Telemedicine is viewed as a cost-effective alternative to the more traditional face-to-face way of providing medical care (e.g., face-to-face consultations or examinations between provider and patient) that states can choose to cover under Medicaid. This definition is modeled on Medicare’s definition of telehealth services (42 CFR 410.78). The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently clarified their requirements for state amendments for telemedicine services. Telemedicine terms and guidelines have been more clearly defined and explained by CMS. According to CMS, states need not submit plan amendments for telemedicine coverage under Medicaid if they intend to pay for services provided via telemedicine in the same way they reimburse in-person visits. CMS approval is only needed if payment amounts differ.
Telehealth Fun at MGMA 16
If you are attending MGMA 2016, be sure to stop by AdvancedMD’s (@advancedmd) booth, #711, for a free psychic reading via telemedicine! While you’re receiving your personal reading (it won’t be a health IT-related reading), stay at the booth to learn about how AdvancedMD is helping small group practices predict their futures, with telemedicine and other technologies.
— AdvancedMD (@advancedmd) October 21, 2016
Telehealth’s SmarTigr System Produces Results
Charleston Area Medical Center Improves Quality and Performance in Patient Engagement and Readmissions
With the help of a video based patient education system, Charleston Area Medical Center (@CAMC_HS) has reduced readmissions for chronic pulmonary disease and other chronic conditions. CAMC utilized the TeleHealth Services’ (@TIGREddie) SmarTigr solution to standardize patient education and increase patient engagement.
— TeleHealth Services (@TIGREddie) October 19, 2016
AnMed Health Improving Patient Education, Satisfaction and Value-Based Purchasing Reimbursements
AnMed Health (@AnMed_Health), a multidisciplinary system with five hospitals and nearly 60 locations, set a goal to improve health literacy and Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) patient satisfaction scores. Telehealth Services’ SmarTigr once again helped easily improve patient education and engagement, this time with a 200 percent increase in the number of videos viewed by patients.
Cigna Telehealth Connection Expands Access and Choice To Millions, Including Adding Access To Behavioral Health Consults
Global health service company Cigna (@Cigna) announced new, expanded access and choice to affordable telehealth services for millions of Americans enrolled in Cigna administered medical and behavioral health plans for 2017. In 2017, Cigna will significantly expand its telehealth coverage by adding AMWELL (@AmericanWell) to its existing offering of MDLIVE – both as a standard telehealth benefit for most of Cigna’s U.S. employer-sponsored group health plans, as well as many of its individual health plans on and off public marketplace exchanges. Both services operate national networks of board-certified doctors that are able to treat minor medical conditions such as allergies, cold and flu and sinusitis.
Global Telemedicine Market Expected to Reach $66.6 billion by 2021, at 18.8 percent CAGR
At the end of September, Mordor Intelligence (@mordorintel) announced the publication of their research report on the telemedicine market. The report titled, “Global Telemedicine Market – Growth, Trends and Forecast,” discusses the current landscape and outlook of the market. Telemedicine has the potential to revolutionize healthcare by making it possible to instantly deliver healthcare at any time to and from anywhere in the world. The telemedicine market is mainly driven by the constant technological innovation, increasing remote patient monitoring, and rising use of treatments that require long follow-ups.
MouthWatch Showcases New TeleHealth Solution TeleDent™ for Dental Care at Annual ADA Meeting Known for Highlighting Dental Innovation
MouthWatch (@mouthwatchpro), a New York-based developer of teledentistry systems, recently showcased their all-in-one teledentistry platform, TeleDent at the American Dental Association meeting in Denver on October 20–22. TeleDent is designed to be a HIPAA-compliant turnkey platform for reaching patients wherever they may be located – at schools, nursing homes, health clinics and public events. Dental hygienists can share images, live video, and patient data with a supervising dentist who then can give recommendations or suggest an in office visit if necessary.
In State News
Telehealth May Help Fill Mental, Behavioral Health Needs in Rural Nebraska
Nebraska’s Department of Health and Human Services recently reviewed the state’s needs in their report, The Comprehensive Behavioral Health Needs Assessment. According to the report, telehealth might be one solution for rural Nebraskans with little access to mental health and substance abuse resources. One in five Nebraskans said he has experienced a mental illness or substance use disorder within the past year while 79 of Nebraska’s 93 counties were designated as having mental health practitioner shortages.
MMC Receives Telemedicine Grant From USDA
USDA Rural Development South Dakota recently awarded Mount Marty College a grant for the purchase of video conferencing equipment that will enhance the Master in Education curriculum provided to tribal colleges. MMC received $116,445 through USDA’s Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program, which is designed to meet the educational and health care needs of rural America. Advanced telecommunications technologies provide enhanced learning and health care opportunities for rural residents.
CMS Covered Telehealth Services
You can download the list of services payable under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule when furnished via telehealth on the CMS website.