Every clinician knows the difficulty of making decisions with incomplete data. With only in-office visits or limited self-reporting from patients, determining if a clinical intervention is necessary or assessing the effectiveness of a therapy is challenging. These critical decisions don’t have to hinge on unreliable patient reports or infrequent measurements of physiological variables.
Remote patient monitoring (RPM) can be a powerful tool to improve patient outcomes and build on the patient-physician relationship, making patients feel more supported in monitoring their health. RPM has been shown to be effective in treating hypertension, diabetes, and obesity.
“Telehealth is the future of healthcare, and the future has arrived. You can elect to be on the leading edge or you can wait for it to come to you. We at PAVMT believe in engaging the broader universe of telehealth, and hope you will approach RPM proactively, bring value to your patients, your practice and take a leadership position in this new normal.”– Desmond Watt, PA-C, co-founder and immediate past president of PAs in Virtual Medicine and Telemedicine
By collecting patient data on FDA-approved medical devices that sync to an app, patients can send readings directly to a web-based Dashboard you can access from a computer in your office. This gives you the data you need to make diagnoses and can show fluctuations over time that would be missed with a single reading at an office visit.
Here are three steps you can take now to introduce RPM to your practice:
1. Review the conditions you’re treating in your patient population
How many patients in your practice could be helped by adding RPM to their care? RPM can be reimbursed for any conditions with digital devices that monitor physiological parameters, including diabetes, hypertension, obesity, anorexia or other weight loss, cardiovascular disease, COPD, asthma, and cancer, to name a few.
2. Check with your billing department about RPM CPT reimbursements
You’ll want to learn how you can file reimbursements for using RPM with your patients. Currently all states cover RPM (through CMS and most insurance), 12 states (AR, CT, DE, GA, HI, ME, MS, NE, NH, NJ, and VA) and the District of Columbia additionally require that commercial insurance cover RPM. United Healthcare has openly stated that they cover RPM nationally.
Below is a breakdown of current reimbursements for the CPT codes specifically related to RPM.
3. Decide what aspects of RPM your practice will handle
Using RPM requires a few steps: prescribing and getting consent from your patients, setting up the device(s), and collecting the data. Beyond this, a data review process can offer additional insights into patient health, specific triggers, or important trends in a patient’s physiological parameters. The initial enrollment (prescription and consent form) must be completed by an MD, NP, or PA.
You can implement RPM in a way that best fits your practice. You have the option to:
- Complete every aspect of RPM in-house, from patient consent through data review.
- Simply prescribe RPM for the patient, get their consent, and connect their device to the app on their phone. Then, have a 3rd party, like RPM365, under the “general supervision” clauses of these CPT codes, handle the review and communication for you.
- Or a hybrid, where you only handle prescribing and consent and have the 3rd party handle everything from there.
What does all this mean to you and your practice?
RPM can be a significant new source of income for your practice. For every 100 patients (single provider practice), the average annual RPM gross revenue can be $147,600 ($69 + $54 = $123 x 100 patients = $12,300 x 12 months = $147,600.) For a group practice that can average closer to 500 patients, the annual gross reimbursements can reach $738,000.
These new revenues alone can heighten your position within the practice, and there is much more to RPM than the reimbursements that help pay for it. There is real improvement in patient outcomes because you obtain objective data from which to evaluate treatment plans. You are also creating a meaningful bond between the patient and yourself; they feel cared for and therefore are more likely to stay on therapy and remain loyal to the practice.
We are here to answer your questions about how RPM can be implemented in your practice. We will work with you to determine how the RPM365 platform can help you become the RPM Driver in your practice!