"I don’t get paid," says the specialist consultant.
Yes admittedly, the regulations are not as generous and not so clear about reimbursement for the specialist or consultant. But, there is still a telemedicine ROI to be had.
First, there are a series of CPT codes that apply.
- 96150 initial assessment
- 96151 reassessment
In-patient initial services
- G9435 problem focused
- G0526 detailed, 50 minutes
- G0427 comprehensive
In-patient followup services
- G0406 for 15 minutes
- G0407 for 25 minutes
- G0408 for 35 minutes
ALL require telehealth modifier
- GT for videoconferencing
- GQ for store and forward
Further, reimbursement may be available when the originating site is rural, a skilled nursing facility, or a dialysis center.
But, there are many other financial and professional benefits to participating in a telemedicine or telehealth network.
You are saved the embarrassment of having the patient sit and front of you and you can do nothing because they came to the wrong type of doctor, you. Should you charge? After all, you spent 15 minutes finding out that the patient's problems and expectations were different than advertised.
You make your practice more efficient. You can schedule your time better. You can spend more time doing speciality care and less time with primary care.
You get to spend more, not less, time with the patient. The consultations are presented with the richness of picture, cogent history and curated labs. The referring provider has provided these for you. Compare this to being chosen as one in three names scribbled on a prescription plan. No longer will your opening question “What brings you here?” be answered with “I don’t know, the other doctor sent me.”
Less telephone tag. How many times have you wanted to simply discuss a plan of action, permission to proceed or clarify a point, and become overwhelmed by the moat of telephone tag reinforced by protective staff members.
Share your pride in your results. Sometimes you just do a good job and would enjoy the satisfaction of sharing it. Beyond personal marketing, this feeling is about collegiality.
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