From Dr. Tom's Desk
As part of the 2019 Call Letter for Medicare Advantage CMS announced relaxing of tele-health rules. Starting in 2020, Medicare Advantage Organizations (MAOs) will be able to include tele-health services in their benefit packages.
The implications will be profound.
Tele-medicine as delivered by current models offer primary care clinicians far greater remuneration per hour than any other practice option.
Smart organizations will tie up their clinicians with exclusive service clauses so they can have the right of refusal should their medical staff decide to moonlight providing tele-health services. Once they get a taste of earning $400/hour taking phone calls from their hot tub, as I did last January, it’s going to be hard to keep them in the office paying them, at best, half as much.
And don’t even talk about urgent care.
The tele-health expansion of Medicare Advantage is a big deal. Address the implications now so you don’t get caught behind the curve.