Telehealth Physical Therapy EMR | Making Hybrid Care Possible
Technology plays a vital role in connecting PT patients with at-home physical therapy. The physical therapy EMR is front and center in ensuring that telehealth is successful.
Making Telehealth Happen
EMR driven telehealth is completed in four broad steps:
Setting Up Telehealth Workflows
- The first step is to configure telehealth workflows at the EMR backend before the solution can be utilized.
- After adding the right time zone at the facility level, messaging templates are configured for sending automated invitations.
- Separate customizable invitation templates are developed for sending out telehealth email messages and telehealth SMS messages.
- These templates utilize tokens like the Telehealth URL, which refers to the web link for patients to click on and join the meeting.
- Automated invitations for telehealth appointments are sent out through the appointment reminders module in the EMR but invitations can also be sent out manually.
Scheduling Telehealth Visits
- Scheduling a telehealth appointment follows the exact same sequence as a regular PT appointment with an additional setting in place that marks it as telehealth.
- The virtual meeting room includes the use of a timer that prevent patients from joining the meeting too soon or after it is over.
- Therapists can verify patient eligibility before inviting them to join a telehealth session thus staying clear of reimbursement issues.
Anchoring The Telehealth Visit
- A “join meeting” link in the user interface enables the therapist to start the telehealth session.
- The therapist can also join the meeting while completing clinical documentation by opening the SOAP note or the flowsheet.
- The join meeting link in the documentation interface takes the therapist into the meeting as the PT provider and telehealth meeting host.
- The telehealth meeting could be documented on one web tab or screen and the video meeting conducted on another tab or screen.
- Each meeting has a unique meeting id that serves as a unique identifier for the appointment and patient.
- Therapists can optionally resend the invitation to the patient either as an SMS or as an email invitation.
- Once the meeting starts, the timer starts running and all information gets stored in the software’s database.
- The EMR enables documenting the meeting, accessing patient records, and generating telehealth charges all at the same time.
- On completion of the visit, patients get a summary of the visit along with other details via the telehealth workflow.
Staying Compliant In Telehealth
- When completing telehealth documentation and generating charges, from the flowsheet or from SOAP notes, payer-specific settings ensure that the right charges are being generated with the correct modifiers and codes.
- Adhering to payer rules and billing guidance for telehealth charges includes presenting the right place of service codes and modifiers on the claim form through the insurance settings interface.
- All telehealth billing settings apply if billing is for the appointment or date of service marked as telehealth.
Virtual care and in-person care complement each other and go hand in hand. Hybrid care is the future and the EMR is making it happen.