Pretty much every clinic in the U.S. healthcare system has learned recently that it’s essential to have tools for providing remote care to patients. Many clinics were caught off guard by the speed with which everyone had to switch to all-remote visits, and only had the tools in place to provide some limited care over the phone, but not telemedicine video visits. Most reimbursements for telephone visits are much lower than they would be for video visits, so if your clinic was in that situation, now is the time to switch to a better platform for remote care.
Even when the current COVID-19 pandemic has subsided and we are able to get back to a more “normal” system of seeing patients in person regularly, there are still a lot of benefits that an effective video telemedicine software program can provide.
Different Types of Telemedicine & Telehealth
There are several different types of telemedicine and telehealth:
- Synchronous (real-time) video chats
- Synchronous audio chats over a telephone connection
- Asynchronous (not real-time) communication using direct messaging tools through a portal, or over secure text message
- E-prescribing through a patient portal
- Delivering lab results through a patient portal
While all of these are important parts of care, the one that provides the highest level of reimbursement and gives your patients the best care experience is real-time video chats.
Choosing a Telemedicine Platform
The first step toward providing patients with real-time video telemedicine visits is to have a software program in place. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has created a temporary rule authorizing clinics to provide services over any type of video chat platform (Zoom, FaceTime, Skype, etc.). The goal is to make telemedicine more accessible for all clinics and patients, but it comes with a big caveat: these platforms are not HIPAA compliant and may not be secure.
If you’re building a telemedicine program for the long-term, it’s critical that you have a platform that will support secure communication so you can keep using it when the temporary CMS authorization expires.
Choose a platform that:
- Offers secure, HIPAA-compliant technology
- Is easy to use for you, your staff, and your patients
- Can be up and running quickly without extensive software implementation times
- Integrates with your EHR, practice management software, scheduling, and other key components of your medical software system
- Can be used on multiple devices, including desktops, laptops, smartphones, and tablets
- Is built specifically for small or independent clinics
- Is affordable and scalable to meet your needs
Learn How AdvancedMD Can Help
AdvancedMD is the leader in providing integrated software solutions for small and independent clinics. Our telemedicine platform has all the tools to provide exceptional patient care and is easy to install and use. Talk to us today to see a demo of our telemedicine software and find out how easy it is to get started.