CMS physician payment proposal nudges open the door for telehealth

From Fierce Healthcare:

Telehealth advocates are rejoicing over last week’s physician payment proposal that would reimburse physicians for certain virtual interactions, a move that some see as a significant first step in overcoming the telehealth payment obstacle.

Buried in the 1,473-page proposed rule released last week by the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services are several new proposals to pay physicians for virtual check-ins and reviewing patient photos or videos using asynchronous or “store-and-forward” transmission.

CMS also proposed adding new billing codes for “prolonged preventative services,” along with three new remote monitoring reimbursement codes recommended by ACT, The App Association.

Jennifer Breuer, a partner with Drinker Biddle, said the proposed rule is a “game-changer” for the telehealth industry if it is finalized in its current form.

“What this really would do is create some pretty broad-based reimbursement for telehealth services not just in rural locations and not just in a healthcare facility, as is currently the case,” she told FierceHealthcare.

 

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