Among several industries that have taken a great down surge due to crises created due to COVID-19, healthcare is also one of the sectors struggling to generate revenue. Since the pandemic is a prevailing condition, medical practices consider telehealth as an excellent option in order to deal with the public health emergency across the country. Moreover, telemedicine can be used for both patients with or without corona virus so as to safeguard high-risk patients, healthcare workers, and the entire healthcare sector from the virus spread.
With the increase in the number of cases due to COVID-19, even telehealth also has developed certain restrictions. Patients can take a video consultation right from their home, and there is no necessity of maintaining a HIPAA compliant technology to execute the purpose of telemedicine in the longer run. When a very few practices were able to adapt to telehealth service, most practices have been finding it difficult to manage the overall operations, particularly, charges and changes with respect to payment for visits and newly released codes pertained to corona virus.
This is where a medical billing outsourcing partner is required for medical practices to deal with challenges and adaptive issues due to COVID-19. Let us see how a medical billing and coding outsourcing company can help overcome the COVID-19 crises.
Handling changes in telehealth guidelines during the COVID-19 outbreak
A medical billing outsourcing partner benefits you with handling continuous changes which include the following:
- Medicare has implemented a rule to pay physicians for performing audio-only telephone calls and teleservices that are covered have greatly expanded. As of March 1, 2020, it also includes emergency department visits.
- Rates for telemedicine services will be paid at rates similar to traditional in-person visits, irrespective of COVID-19 or not.
- Physicians can perform medical screening exams through telehealth visits.
- Telehealth can be utilized by both new and existing patients.
- Cost-sharing is waived off on telemedicine visits.
- Physicians need not be in the facility to provide telehealth services to patients and can provide them consultation from being at home.
- Physicians can use applications such as Skype or FaceTime against HIPPA compliance during this pandemic.
New codes are being introduced
Since traditional health visits do not work out during this pandemic, telehealth services have been uplifted with mere restrictions. But the medical codes for traditional and telehealth services vary to an extreme extent. Additionally, new codes have been introduced for providing COVID-19 treatment to patients, which make it more difficult for practices to update them with telemedicine codes and COVID-19 codes that are unfamiliar to them.
This is the right time for medical billing companies to realize how difficult it is to handle their medical billing and coding processes with confused COVID-19 codes on one hand, where to use and how to use and directing complete focus on patients on the other hand. Therefore, outsourcing your medical billing and coding processes help you manage your operations and spend time for patients’ care.
Keeping non-essential personnel out of the office
The entire country tries mostly staying at home to avoid the spread of virus through maintaining social distancing. In such times, onsite billing and coding personnel may have the need to come to office and use the office-based software for accomplishing billing and coding needs of the office. To avoid the spread of virus and keep the situation at your office intact, outsourcing your medical billing and coding will be an excellent option to deal with your practice against COVID-19 crises.
Focussing on patients when offering health advice virtually
To ensure proper care is given to patients during teleheatlh, the American Medical Association has come up with few tips, which include the following:
- Private environment with patient privacy
- Correct equipment for telehealth and dual screens for EHR documentation
- Physicians in professional attire even when at home
- Staying away from other app notifications till the end of consultation
- Review of the history of patients before teleconsultation
- Maintaining eye-contact with patients by placing webcam properly
- Effective and clear communication
- Good listening attitude while on consultation to understand patients better
The telehealth concerns mentioned in this blog clearly showcase that medical billing and coding outsourcing is necessary to take control of the prevailing pandemic condition. If you need the best outsourcing partner for your medical billing company, approach 24/7 Medical Billing Services, the leading medical billing services company in the US anytime as per your convenience. The company has quite a good number of outsourcing plans to support clients like you during this COVID-19.