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Telehealth: Start with the Basics

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Telehealth: Start with the Basics

TELEHEALTH - Blog

Murer Consultants Expert Advice: Telehealth

The world of telehealth is new, exciting, and evolving minute by minute. In fact, 64% of the American healthcare population is willing to see a doctor or therapist remotely. And the attraction doesn’t stop there: many insurance providers now make it economically attractive for healthcare providers to offer telehealth services.

As this new trend impacts modern healthcare practices, Murer Consultants will be offering regular tips and advice to keep your entity at the head of the curve.

Tip #1: Don’t get lost in the terminology – telehealth and telemedicine are two different things.

Although both terms are used interchangeably by some, the meanings of telehealth and telemedicine are technically different.

Murer Recommends: Start with the basics.

Telehealth incorporates Telemedicine, but includes many other things as well; telehealth is not referring to a specific service, but rather encompasses several different services and practices. The four applied domains of telehealth, as defined by the Center for Connected Health Policy, are:

• Live Videoconferencing: a two-way interaction between patient and provider
• Store-and-Forward: Transmission of health history from one provider to another
• Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM): Personal health data exchange from patient to provider
• Mobile Health (mHealth): Practice and education supported by electronic communication (texts, alerts, etc.).

Alternatively, Telemedicine refers specifically to consultation or examination between practitioner and patient through telecommunication. These services include mental health counseling and dentistry.

State Medicaid and private insurance programs may broaden the definition or use the term differently, however. Pay close attention to how these entities define telemedicine or telehealth services to ensure proper understanding of the regulatory framework as well as the proper utilization of and reimbursement for these services.

If your entity is just getting their telehealth-feet wet or you’re looking to refine your entity’s use of telehealth practices, Murer Consultants is here to offer expert guidance. Start by visiting our Telehealth info center or by speaking with a consultant at 708.478.7030 or info@murer.com.

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