By Eryn Crawford, President, CompPoint Managed Care
According to a recent presentation on telehealth by One Call Care Management, a nationally projectable survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of American Well found 64% of consumers were willing to have a video visit with a doctor, and 7 out of 10 Americans prefer to get common prescriptions via video visit.
At the time of the writing of this articles, currently in the US:
Obviously, not all injuries are appropriate for telemedicine, so which ones are? Concentra Occupational Health reports that grade 1 and 11 upper and lower extremity strains/sprains, first degree burns, back and neck strains/sprains without significant limitations, contusions, partial thickness abrasions, contact rashes, repetitive-use injuries, bloodborne pathogen exposures are all injuries that can be treated virtually. (2)
The cost of telemedicine/telerehab is comparable to a visit to a brick and mortar clinic, though studies have shown that treatment duration is generally shorter, thus reducing overall costs. Generally, billing is submitted at fee schedule or usual and customary and subject to available PPO discounts.
There may be limitations to the viability of telemedicine/telerehab in some instances. Injured workers may not have access to the technology necessary for a virtual visit or may not have easy access to a private place for the visit to take place. Some injuries require hands-on or emergency treatment. Several states have regulatory restrictions on telemedicine, though many of those are being relaxed in light of the pandemic. Despite a few constraints, the benefits of telemedicine and telerehabilitation for workers’ compensation patients are straightforward:
For 30 years, Brentwood has focused on caring for injured employees. Our clients aren’t just customers, they’re our partners. To learn more, please visit our website at www.bwood.com, or contact us for more information.
(1) Source, Michelle Despres, PT (April 1, 2020) One Call Telerehab: The Future is Now. [Webinar]
(2) Concentra.com/occupational-health/telemedicine (March, 2020)