Remote patient monitoring, the use of technology integrated care to monitor patient health status outside of traditional clinical settings, is now recognized as a reimbursable service by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”). The use of this kind of technology can offer patients the ability to receive follow up care in their homes, reduce costs to the overall system and allow providers to reach patient populations from afar. CMS released new rules related to Remote Patient Monitoring which include new CPT codes for Chronic Care Remote Physiologic Monitoring.
The new CPT codes are:
CPT code 99453: “Remote monitoring of physiologic parameter(s) (eg, weight, blood pressure, pulse oximetry, respiratory flow rate), initial; set-up and patient education on use of equipment.”
CPT code 99454: “Remote monitoring of physiologic parameter(s) (eg, weight, blood pressure, pulse oximetry, respiratory flow rate), initial; device(s) supply with daily recording(s) or programmed alert(s) transmission, each 30 days.”
CPT code 99457: “Remote physiologic monitoring treatment management services, 20 minutes or more of clinical staff/physician/other qualified healthcare professional time in a calendar month requiring interactive communication with the patient/caregiver during the month.”
Most notably, CPT 99457 permits remote patient monitoring to be performed by non-physician clinical staff, making it easier for healthcare providers to meet patient needs and manage workflow. While CMS does not specify which types of technology are eligible for remote monitoring reimbursement, it does plan to issue guidance to assist practitioners with that question. Overall, CMS continues to recognize the useful nature of telehealth and new avenues for reimbursement are likely to follow the development and expansion of remote patient monitoring payment mechanisms.