COVID-19 has created many challenges for therapy practices over the past few weeks that have changed the way patients will experience appointments. Our freedoms and business routines have rapidly changed and provided sudden challenges that need to be adjusted and addressed. Therapy practices are experiencing appointment drop offs due to social distancing requests and potential exposure to the coronavirus.
We all know that the best therapy that you can provide is in person at the clinic, but when national emergencies occur and social distancing is recommended it is key to plan ahead and provide a solution to patients that are looking to cancel in person appointments.
Telehealth is a solution that therapy practices are considering when it comes to filling in the gap of cancelled appointments. Clinicians have the ability to virtually take on appointments through video conferencing allowing patients to get the treatments they need in the comfort of their home.
It is a powerful tool to help fight against the coronavirus and maintain patient and staff safety while keeping appointments on track. It provides a solution for patients with a fear of going into healthcare facilities and risking an infection. Instead of canceling they can switch or schedule a telehealth appointment instead. This lets them continue the momentum when it comes to their rehab needs.
How does telehealth work?
With telehealth technology a therapist has the ability to send a link or notification before an appointment that the patient can access from their device at home. Once connected the therapist and patient will have virtual access to each other enabling them to have the appointment and move forward with the needed rehab. Using a telehealth tool should be as easy as scheduling an appointment at the clinic. Administrators and clinicians can easily schedule and select the telehealth drop down option similar to the way they select and schedule onsite appointments.
When your practice uses telehealth, it can provide the stability that you need to increase appointments and deliver a better patient experience. Here are some benefits and features that will help make a difference.
Benefits that telehealth offers:
- Addresses the concerns for the spread and dangers of the coronavirus
- Cuts down canceled appointments and no-shows
- Offers a virtual option for appointments over traditional in-clinic visits
- Provides convenience and reduces waiting room times
- Improves patient engagement and satisfaction
- Provides custom care to each patient based on their needs
- Cuts patient costs down
- Allows therapist and patient to be more flexible
Telehealth features that matter:
- Ability to choose video exercises that allows therapist to assemble program
- Realtime patient monitoring that provides access to patient during session
- A complete documentation process that connects to your existing billing
- Metrics and reports access linked to view goals and targets from telehealth results
Recently, President Trump has announced a great deal of flexibility for therapists looking to use telehealth services. Beginning March 6, 2020, Medicare will temporarily pay therapists that use telehealth which will allow patients and therapists to avoid the risks for COVID-19. This provides therapists a wider range of ways that they can connect with patients and continue sessions without having to cancel appointments.
Practice Pro is in the process of providing a telehealth solution that is reimbursable with patient satisfaction in mind. Your concern on how to run your business during the coronavirus crisis is our concern--the goal is to help you maintain and schedule new appointments. We are working hard to implement a telehealth solution and offer it as soon as possible in your EMR. Please stand by as we will have future announcements on our telehealth solution with details on availability and implementation. We are taking this very seriously and strive to provide a solution to elevate your business and solve your coronavirus concerns that are challenging your practice.
In the meantime, feel free to use a simple and free telehealth solution known as Doxy that can help provide an immediate solution to potential cancellations. This solution allows you to create your own personal room and start remote sessions.
Should you have any questions or concerns, click here and we'll be glad to answer and get back to you.