Monday, August 17, 2009

Telemedicine arrives to Medicare


Medicare will pay for a limited number of Part B services that are furnished by a physician or practitioner to an eligible beneficiary via a telecommunications system. For eligible telehealth services, the use of a telecommunications system substitutes for a face-to-face, "hands on" encounter.

Distant Site Practitioners
Practitioners at the distant site who may furnish and receive payment for covered telehealth services (subject to State law) are:
Nurse practitioners (NP);
Physician assistants (PA);
Nurse midwives;
Clinical nurse specialists (CNS);
Clinical psychologists (CP) and clinical

Telehealth Services
As a condition of payment, an interactive audio and video telecommunications system must be used that permits real-time communication between the physician or practitioner at the distant site and the beneficiary at the originating site. Asynchronous "store and forward" technology is permitted only in Federal telehealth demonstration programs conducted in Alaska or Hawaii.
The current list of Medicare telehealth services includes:
n Consultations (CPT codes 99241 – 99255);
n Office or other outpatient visits (CPT codes 99201 – 99215);
n Individual psychotherapy (CPT codes 90804 – 90809);
n Pharmacologic management (CPT code 90862);
n Psychiatric diagnostic interview examination (CPT code 90801);

NC contact:
DCREGION IV – ATLANTA Lana DennisE-mail: Telephone: (404) 562-7379States: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee


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