Many states have enacted or have pending legislation to increase coverage of the use of technology to bring a specialist to a patient’s bedside or community clinic from a distant location without the need for either party to physically travel. This is telehealth, an expanding solution to the shortage of health care in rural areas. Telehealth may also be referred to as telemedicine, but definitions for each vary by state and payer. Without any consideration of state law or payer policies, telehealth services might be loosely defined as technology-enabled, patient-specific services provided by a physician or practitioner in a distant geographic location to a patient who requires that physician’s expertise.

If the term telehealth brings non–face-to-face services to mind, the thought is correct—telehealth services are not provided in person. However, from a coding and billing perspective, many telehealth services represent face-to-face services, albeit via use of telehealth technology. With a...

You do not currently have access to this content.