Remote patient monitoring (RPM) is a growing trend in telehealth. This service is designed to help reduce readmissions, decrease costs, and extend a patient’s time in the home. If you are considering using remote care for your patients, it is important to understand the new Medicare reimbursement guidelines.
RPM reduces hospital readmissions
The use of remote patient monitoring CMS has several benefits for health care providers and hospitals. Patients who receive remote patient monitoring experience lower hospital rates. They are better informed about their health conditions and can better manage their treatments.
Remote patient monitoring reduces hospital readmissions by enabling clinicians to build virtual patient relationships. The increased interaction helps patients feel more comfortable and decrease hospital costs. Several studies have shown that RPM reduces readmissions by 64 percent. As a result, hospitals can save $5,034 per patient per year.
Remote patient monitoring systems enable connected medical devices and wearables to communicate with a remote system. The device connects to the RPM system via the patient’s computing device, and real-time data flow to servers for analysis. The results are presented to physicians on their phones. The system also allows two-way communication and real-time decision-making.
It reduces costs
CMS has changed the Medicare system to make remote patient monitoring more affordable and accessible to Medicare recipients. These changes include the introduction of a new home infusion therapy benefit and updating the Home Health Prospective Payment System (CHPPS). The changes are expected to reduce costs and improve patient care while increasing patient safety and quality of care.
One study showed that remote patient monitoring could save nearly $6 billion annually in the U.S. if implemented widely. The technology helps doctors check on patients even after they’ve been discharged. It can also reduce the risk of secondary conditions. This technology is also helpful for preventing age-related healthcare conditions.
It extends time at home.
Remote patient monitoring is a powerful tool for improving patient care. It helps doctors keep a preventive eye on their patients and minimizes time spent in the hospital or office. It also improves the quality of care by detecting serious health problems before they occur.
CMS first recognized remote patient monitoring in 2019. The agency created a handful of new CPT codes to recognize this technology. These codes allow physicians to gather physiological data about their patients in their homes without needing in-person interactions. In addition, the new code now recognizes the service as therapeutic, meaning that clinicians can also track and report data on non-physiological events.
It is an increasingly popular telehealth option.
CMS is increasingly supporting telehealth services, including remote patient monitoring. The service is a good way to provide ongoing care to patients far from their primary care provider. The program offers many advantages, including decreased travel costs, increased convenience, and fewer risks of infection. It also reduces the risk of health complications for patients unable to travel. But it is important to note that remote patient monitoring can only be effective when the patient understands how the device works and is comfortable with it.
CMS recently expanded its guidelines so the clinical staff can perform associated services under the supervision of physicians. This frees up physician time for more complex procedures and treatments. As a result, RPM is here to stay, and its usage will continue to grow.
It is not a diagnostic test.
CMS published a temporary regulation for telehealth and remote patient monitoring. E-visits and virtual check-ins are covered. Despite not being a diagnostic test, remote patient monitoring is eligible for reimbursement. However, providers must fulfill several requirements.
First, a patient must have an established patient relationship. A physician cannot bill for an RPM service unless the patient consents. The patient can consent at the time of service or through a qualified healthcare provider. An Independent Diagnostic Testing Facility (IDF) cannot furnish RPM services. Finally, the RPM data must be reasonable and necessary for diagnosis and treatment.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have provided guidelines for reimbursement of this service. There are five primary CPT codes for remote patient monitoring: initial set-up, supplies & equipment, data analysis, treatment plan development, and management.