For our third and final post in our 3-series on telehealth, Red House looks back to our interview with Andrew Livingston, founder at Doxy.me, a user-friendly telehealth platform, to discuss how telehealth is billed . . . we are obviously excited about the article on billing.
First, it is all about parity. Across many specialties, telehealth has coverage parity. That means that care rendered over a telehealth medium must be treated as though they were in-person visits. That means the same amount of money; it’s the law. Otherwise it disincentivizes practitioners and insurers from using a potentially powerful tool in their practice. For example, a follow-up consultation with a patient to review results carried out over a telehealth platform must be treated, from a billing standpoint, the same as if were done in person. That is good news for the growth of your practice.
Further, Andrew told Red House, “You have to be pushy as a doctor, diligent about it.” Even if it is available in your state, “insurers are not always forthcoming with program details.” He has seen that, “doctors are able to get [telemedicine benefits] added to their contracts and have profitable contract rates.”
Next, getting it established is the hard part. But you do not need to be the expert. That’s why you have a professional billing service help you. It’s our job to know how to get the right modifiers for you, negotiate the contract on your behalf, so you can start implementing. What you will need to do is decide which types of services you will offer in a new telemedicine – you need to be sure it’s right for your specialty after all. You also need to decide if you’ll offer this on a cash basis also. Since the costs are lower, Andrew said, “we occasionally see doctors offering lower prices for telehealth solutions.”
Finally, yes, the rates will help you grow your practice and offer a host of other benefits to you and your patients. It varies greatly by state. We suggest you contact us, consult the American Telehealth Association, and Doxy. All three will help you successfully implement your new telehealth platform.
Andrew is currently the founder of doxy.me telemedicine, a global organization that makes it easier and more affordable for healthcare providers to care for their patients anywhere, including rural and underserved areas. Doxy.me created a free telemedicine solution that works on a smartphone, tablet, or computer. He believes everyone should have access to care through telemedicine.