Health and safety are your primary concerns during the coronavirus outbreak, but the financial stability of your independent practice is also paramount. To assist you in learning more about financial help that may be available to you and your practice, as well as the new billing codes for remotely providing healthcare, Elation Health has published a financial resource guide.
A survey recently conducted by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) revealed that 97% of medical groups have experienced a negative financial impact directly or indirectly related to the COVID-19 epidemic. The federal government has implemented several relief programs, such as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, to help small businesses like your independent practice. The MGMA poll also found that 76% of healthcare providers responding had applied for a loan through the PPP.
Some of the federal programs, including the PPP and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), were rapidly depleted by an onslaught of struggling businesses who immediately applied for assistance. An additional federal package totaling $480 billion should be approved in late April. That package will authorize the Paycheck Protection Program to spend an additional $310 billion. The new bill also provides $75 billion for hospitals and health care providers to address coronavirus expenses and lost revenue.
Elation’s financial guide will update the information regarding PPP and EIDL as soon as it becomes available. Other areas of the guide provide guidance on virtual services billing. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recognizes that telehealth services will become more prevalent and are the best option in many cases for keeping patients and providers safe during COVID-19. CMS specifically categorizes virtual services into 4 groups:
- Telehealth visits
- Virtual check-ins
- Telephone-only E/M.
The Medicare billing codes as well as the Communication Mechanism for each are outlined in the Virtual Services Billing Guidelines section of the financial guide.
Downloads for details on additional COVID-19 programs and for the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) are also available on the site, as pdf documents.
At Elation Health, we’re committed to ensuring your success in dealing with the economic effects of COVID-19. The financial guide is included as part of our COVID-19 Resources because we know as you transition your practice to adjust to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, you need to stay current and to continue to focus on providing the highest quality care to your patients.
As we move through the COVID-19 outbreak and its after-effects, we will continue to update the resource pages, to ensure independent physicians like you have the information you need to make the right decisions for your practice and your patients.