TELEHEALTH / TELEMEDICINE SERVICES
What Is Telehealth/Telemedicine?
Telehealth/Telemedicine, as brought to you be Greco Associates and provided by MDLIVE, is comprised of a national network of U.S. board certified doctors who use electronic health records, telephone consultations and online video consultations to diagnose, recommend treatment and write short term, non-DEA controlled prescriptions, when appropriate.
According to the American Telemedicine Association:
Formally defined, telemedicine is the use of medical information exchanged from one site to another via electronic communications to improve a patient’s clinical health status. Telemedicine includes a growing variety of applications and services using two-way video, email, smart phones, wireless tools and other forms of telecommunications technology.
Starting out over forty years ago with demonstrations of hospitals extending care to patients in remote areas, the use of telemedicine has spread rapidly and is now becoming integrated into the ongoing operations of hospitals, specialty departments, home health agencies, private physician offices as well as consumer’s homes and workplaces.
Telemedicine is not a separate medical specialty. Products and services related to telemedicine are often part of a larger investment by health care institutions in either information technology or the delivery of clinical care. Even in the reimbursement fee structure, there is usually no distinction made between services provided on site and those provided through telemedicine and often no separate coding required for billing of remote services. ATA has historically considered telemedicine and telehealth to be interchangeable terms, encompassing a wide definition of remote healthcare.Patient consultations via video conferencing, transmission of still images, e-health including patient portals, remote monitoring of vital signs, continuing medical education, consumer-focused wireless applications and nursing call centers, among other applications, are all considered part of telemedicine and telehealth.
While the term telehealth is sometimes used to refer to a broader definition of remote healthcare that does not always involve clinical services, ATA uses the terms in the same way one would refer to medicine or health in the common vernacular. Telemedicine is closely allied with the term health information technology (HIT). However, HIT more commonly refers to electronic medical records and related information systems while telemedicine refers to the actual delivery of remote clinical services using technology.
When would a patient use telehealth/telemedicine?
For which conditions would a patient use it?
For non-emergency care such as:
Acne Joint Aches and Pains
Allergies Nausea and Vomiting
Bronchitis Pink Eye
Cold and Flu Rashes
Fever Sinus Infection
Gout Sore Throat
Infections Urinary Tract Infection
Cold and Flu
Nausea and Vomiting
What is the benefit for a patient and their family members?
Greco Associates’ telehealth/telemedicine offering applies to everyone ranging from the uninsured and underinsured to the very well insured. Whether you have insurance or not, or a primary care physician or not, telehealth/telemedicine offers the patient the convenience of 24/7, 365 access, and the avoidance of a copay for unnecessary office or emergency room visits. This offering does not replace, but provides a complement to the patient’s primary care physician, if they have one.
We partner with MDLIVE for the provision of services. If someone were to contract/register directly with MDLIVE, there would typically be a $49 charge per consultation. However, we have created an offering that provides unlimited use, for very low fixed monthly fees, and no additional consultation fees.
Both individual and family plans are available. These plans may be purchased by individuals (voluntary option) for themselves or their family, or may be purchased in volume at a significant discount by a company, which may want to provide this service as a benefit for their employees. Customized service platforms are also available for health systems.
Who/What is MDLIVE?
Founded in 2009, MDLIVE is the leading digital provider of online healthcare delivery services and software that benefit patients, health systems, employers, and payers. MDLIVE’s organizational philosophy is virtual care, anywhere. They are singularly focused on creating a new collaborative care model that seamlessly and securely (via voice, video, email, and mobile) enables quality connections between patients and doctors while increasing access to affordable healthcare.
MDLIVE is funded by John Sculley, formerly President and CEO of Pepsi-Cola and CEO of Apple Computer (who currently serves as MDLIVE’s vice-chairman) and other investors including Heritage Group, Sentara Healthcare, Sutter Health, Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, the Social+Capital Partnership, and Bedford Funding. Their service offerings fall into the three segment categories of direct-to-consumer, enterprise level, and health systems.
How does it actually work?
Step 1: Call toll-free
A patient calls a toll-free hotline that is available 24/7/365.
Step 2: Speak with a care coordinator
A care coordinator evaluates the patient to determine if telehealth/telemedicine is appropriate and
redirects the patient to a doctor if appropriate.
Step 3: Speak with the doctor
Once an available provider is located, MDLIVE automatically calls and connects the doctor to the patient.
By video conference
Step 1: Visit website
Patient visits the MDLIVE website and logs in using their username and password.
Step 2: Find a doctor
MDLIVE helps the patient determine if telehealth/telemedicine is appropriate and searches for a provider using criteria, such as specialty, language, gender, location, or simply find the next available doctor.
Step 3: See the doctor online
Once an available provider is located, MDLIVE automatically connects the doctor to the patient via an online portal.
By mobile app
A patient can download a mobile app from Google Play, Apple App Store, and from the Windows Store. It is very easy to use and the patient can handle the entire process via their mobile device. A patient can schedule a call with a doctor, can connect with an MDLIVE service assistant, update their medical history, check their symptoms, and view and manage their account.
How is the continuity of care for the patient handled?
Who are the doctors?
MDLIVE has the nation's largest network of doctors for telehealth/telemedicine services. Doctors are state-licensed to practice in the state where the patient is located, US Board certified, and credentialed using NCQA and URAC guidelines. On average, doctors have 15 years of experience practicing medicine. Their specialties include primary care, pediatrics, emergency medicine and family medicine. Background checks are conducted with primary source verification through the National Physician Data Base (NPDB) and the American Medical Association (AMA) for medical licensure, training and education, work history, and malpractice history.
The GA offerings provided by MDLIVE
In the direct-to-consumer segment or “voluntary offering,” if an individual patient were to contract/register directly with MDLIVE, there would typically be a $49 charge per consultation, which is completely waived in GA’s offering. GA offers individual subscribers and their families special discounted unlimited access for a modest flat monthly fee to US board certified and fully insured physicians by phone, video, or mobile app 24/7/365 with NO copays and NO consultation fees. These telehealth/telemedicine services are beneficial, applicable, and available to everyone whether they are well insured, underinsured, have high copays and deductibles, or are not insured.
GA also offers special programs for associations and professional societies which can be offered to their membership with special membership pricing, as a value added affinity program, while at the same time earning an ongoing royalty/annuity for their organization.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT Greco Associates at 908-490-0060, or email info@GrecoVALUE.com
GA also offers very attractive enterprise level employer sponsored and/or insurance payer embedded plans. In the employer scenario, the employer purchases the service at a discount from the direct-to-consumer/voluntary offering (described above) and provides it to their employees and their families, as an additional employee benefit. Depending upon the number of employees involved, the employer discount could be very significant. In the insurance scenario, large payers, e.g., Cigna and government sponsored organizations, e.g., Medicare and Medicaid are taking a similar approach and embedding the service as part of the policy subscription with the monthly fee rolled into the premium. Special programs are also available for colleges and universities, including students, faculty, administration, and alumni.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT Greco Associates at info@GrecoVALUE.com
Finally, GA works with health systems that are interested in licensing the MDLIVE platform and partnering with MDLIVE to integrate the telehealth/telemedicine services into an overall private label health system branded patient engagement strategy. In such cases, the health system may utilize their physicians to staff the platform when they are available, with overflow to the rest of the MDLIVE network when they are not. This approach also affords the health system the opportunity to position themselves with patients and arrange for any necessary follow-up with the patients, utilizing their full range of local hospital system provided services. Patients using a health system licensee for this service would pay a separate fee for each consultation. Flat monthly fees and unlimited usage do not apply in this case, as they do in the direct-to-consumer/voluntary offering and enterprise employer and insurance payer models, described above.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT Greco Associates at info@GrecoVALUE.com