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Evaluating Telemedicine Technology

If you are like most people, you don’t evaluate telemedicine technology every day. Sifting through the various options and vendor claims can be confusing. There are some things that most telemedicine software platforms have in common. They generally support video and audio conferencing over the internet using the patient’s PC or mobile device. Beyond that, there are a few less common features that make sense to look for. Doing so will increase the likelihood of a successful telemedicine program for your practice.

Automated Reimbursement Verification

Telemedicine laws and payer practices vary greatly. If you want to be sure that you are paid for every video encounter, be sure to look for a software solution that has built-in reimbursement validation. The vendor maintains a database of payer information and state laws and checks the eligibility of each patient for reimbursement before the video visit is confirmed.

EHR Integration

Look for a telemedicine system that can communicate with your EHR or practice management solution, eliminating double data entry and making your staff more efficient. With a good integration, you can seamlessly schedule appointments and send patient information securely back and forth between the systems.

Patient and Provider Support

The telemedicine software should be easy to use, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be questions from time to time. Look for a vendor that will directly support you and your staff, along with your patients.

Scheduling

It is smart to think a lot about how video visits will be scheduled within your practice. Some software solutions allow for patients to schedule video visits online, while others keep control over scheduling in the hands of your staff by offering provider scheduling.

Custom Branding

If giving your patients a consistent experience and keeping your brand on the top of their minds is important to you, consider a telemedicine solution that lets you tailor the look of the application to include your logo and brand identity.

The Ability to Work Well Over Low Bandwidth and Slow Internet Connections

When technology vendors talk about system performance, they often give you information and details assuming the best case condition. But unfortunately, medical office buildings and hospitals are notorious for less than optimal network environments. If you don’t find a solution that works well even under these conditions, you may experience poor video quality or unresponsive screens. This has the potential to derail the entire endeavor.

If you take each of these considerations into account, you should be able to find a telemedicine solution that will meet the needs of your practice and your patients alike.

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