by Wyn Staheli, Director of Research
February 23rd, 2017
Telehealth is proving to be the wave of the future as the number of practices offering these services continues to grow. An online poll by Medical Economics asked those who visited their site about the implementation of telehealth services implemented by their individual practices this year. As of February 2, 2017, the results were significant:
- 30% already utilize the technology,
- 33% WILL implement it, and
- 37% have no plans to implement the technology.
Compare those numbers with a more randomized survey in 2015 in which only 15% of respondents stated that they used telehealth technology.
CMS recognizes the need for telehealth services and has increased the number of covered services which are rendered via telehealth. Additionally, a telehealth flag and modifier were added to the 2017 CPT code book.
In support of this growth, Find-A-Code, includes two new flags for 2017. One identifies codes listed in the CPT code book and the other identifies codes which CMS covers as a telehealth service. Please note that some codes (e.g., 99202) will show both modifiers.
Be aware of payer policies regarding the reporting of these services. Some payers may require the use of modifier 95 and others (e.g., Medicare) require the use of modifier GT (or GQ in the case of asynchronous communication for places like Alaska).