Question Telehealth visit - no video

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If your provider is doing telehealth and the audio connects but not the Video on their side, the patient has audio and video for the encounter. Can you still bill for a completed encounter? Or does it become a Phone only encounter?
Thanks for any input.
 

Blackhorse

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We code and bill per provider's documentation, not by what you or other staff see what happened during the visit. If doctor's note says "audio only", then you can only bill 99441-99443.
 

sedel1156

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If the visit begins with audio/visual, but the patient loses the video - is this billed as a telephone only visit? Or, is it billed as per the greatest amount of time spent as either audio or video?
 
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If the visit begins with audio/visual, but the patient loses the video - is this billed as a telephone only visit? Or, is it billed as per the greatest amount of time spent as either audio or video?
Hi there, for Medicare patients it will depend on whether the service was primarily audio/visual or audio only:

Practitioners should report the code that best describes the service. If the service was furnished primarily through an audio-only connection, practitioners should consider whether the telephone evaluation and management or assessment and management codes best describe the service, or whether the service is best described by one of the behavioral health and education codes for which we have waived the video requirement during the PHE for the COVID-19 pandemic. If the service was furnished primarily using audio-video technology, then the practitioner should bill the appropriate code from the Medicare telehealth list that describes the service.

Private payers may have different guidelines.

Medicare doesn't define "primarily" but amount of time seems like the easiest way to keep track and determine how to code.

I think the key for practices is to document these visits carefully. When the visit begins providers should note the time and what sort of connection the provider and patient had and when the video is lost, note that time.
 
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