LOUISVILLE, Ky., May 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- National healthcare consulting firm HSG has announced the creation of a new Virtual Health Consulting service to help hospitals, healthcare systems, and physician practices address the viability of implementing virtual visits with patients. Expansion of reimbursement parameters and relaxation of restrictions by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), and pressure on commercial payers to do the same in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic, make virtual care more realistic and partially mitigates potential lost revenue. The logistical implementation of virtual visits can present challenges and opportunities. HSG's new Virtual Health consulting service is designed to help health systems create a program that meets patients' needs and generates revenue for the facility.
With directives to maximize social distancing, and imperatives to conserve Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at least through the summer, health systems must continue to embrace meeting patients' needs with virtual visits. For many healthcare organizations, systemic changes need to be made to support heightened virtual care and ensure adequate documentation of interactions to satisfy reimbursement requirements.
"We know that a lot of organizations put off the idea of virtual visits because of the abundant limitations from CMS and private insurers. With the relaxation of regulatory requirements and expansion of reimbursement parameters, many hospitals and healthcare systems have predictably embraced virtual care as an immediate strategy to maintain outpatient care and associated revenues. Physician, Advanced Practice Provider (APP), and patient acceptance predict virtual care becoming a long-term strategy for patient care. This can have sweeping implications for clinical and business operations, processes, and revenue cycles," said Terrence R. McWilliams, MD, Director and Chief Clinical Consultant at HSG.
HSG's initial goal in launching a consulting service focused on virtual health is to assist hospitals and healthcare systems so they can continue to thrive during this challenging time. Many providers are experiencing a decrease of more than 50% of their physician practice volumes. To emerge from plummeting patient interactions, healthcare organizations must establish, implement, and get paid for healthcare visits performed via acceptable telecommunications technology. Long term, the service aims to support healthcare organizations as they leverage virtual health as a sustainable care solution for the community.
Healthcare providers must be aware of the current conditions for conducting virtual telehealth visits and consider the future environment to be able to sustain virtual care after the pandemic. Initially, health systems may have to expand patient portal permissions or utilization and investigate platform security. Longer-term, healthcare systems must explore how to sustain virtual care initiatives, review options for ongoing reimbursement with commercial insurers, and anticipate the impact on provider compensation models.
Coding for clinicians who may independently bill Medicare for evaluation and management visits has a long list of rules and requirements to follow. HSG's service addresses these complex rules and helps to ensure a mutually convenient, secure mechanism for healthcare systems to provide needed patient care in a safe and acceptable manner.
Organizations in need of information on how to plan and be reimbursed for virtual patient interactions should visit the website and download HSG's free webinar on Virtual Visits: Collecting Fees & Operational Logistics. Additional information regarding telehealth visit billing codes and guidelines can be downloaded from the website. For more information about implementing health system and healthcare provider virtual health programs, contact Terry McWilliams, MD, at 502-614-4292 or email [email protected].
HSG builds high-performing physician networks so health systems can address complex changes with confidence. From boosting market power and financial strength to preparing for value-based care, HSG can help you define your strategy, implement that strategy, and manage your physician network short- or long-term. HSG, a Louisville-based national healthcare consultancy firm, can be reached via its website and LinkedIn or by emailing [email protected] or calling (502) 814-1180.
Karolyn Raphael, Winger Marketing
[email protected] or 312-494-0422
Terrence R. McWilliams, MD, FAAFP, Director and Chief Clinical Consultant at HSG
Dr. Terrence McWilliams, Director and Chief Clinical Consultant at healthcare consulting firm HSG, helped launch a new consulting service to address virtual health care in hospital systems and healthcare networks.