September 2020 Client Newsletter
UnitedHealthcare to phase out paper checks
UnitedHealthcare (UHC) announced a new claim payment policy that seeks to eliminate paper checks and requires practices to move to electronic funds transfer (EFT) payments.
Beginning this month for its commercial lines of business, UHC is starting a campaign of emails, letters, and phone calls to encourage practices that have not already enrolled in its EFT program to do so. UHC’s Medicare Advantage plans will start later in the fall and Community and Medicaid plans in 2021.
Those practices who refuse to move to EFT will be paid using “virtual” credit cards and incur credit card merchant fees. Practices can sign up for the UHC EFT program and view the enrollment guides here.
Looking for another Source of Income for Your Practice?
Consider Remote Physiological Monitoring (RPM) & Telemedicine
Are you familiar with Remote Physiological Monitoring (RPM) with Medicare? Patients must have at least 1 chronic condition but could be candidates if their health was such that the remote monitoring could improve their health/keep them out of the hospital.
Do you have any patients that might qualify? Medicare covers the cost for the patient and you can make about $75 per patient per month (about $900 per year), not counting any other services you currently provide.
There are companies who provide the required equipment that sends the results (pulse ox, weight, BP, BS, EFR etc.) to a portal you access and tracks the progress. If the measured values fall outside of preset ranges, you get an email alert. The monthly professional fee includes not just the physician, but also medical assistants, LPNs, RNs, etc.
Continuing to offer Telemedicine after the PHE ends (depending on the insurance coverage, of course) can provide additional income instead of your patients using an Urgent Care Center. Not all medical issues are appropriate for TM, of course, but once the insurers determine the TM policies we will create a document to assist.
Perhaps once a week, offer TM in the evening to accommodate working people. It could still be by appointment. Patients who may have just not sought care, or gone to Urgent Care, would benefit.
Provider Relief Fund Application Deadline Extended - Again
The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) reopened the Provider Relief Fund (PRF) General Distribution portal for certain providers and recently announced the deadline to apply has been extended to September 13th. The portal is reopened for providers who:
Did not receive an initial payment that totals approximately 2 percent of their annual patient revenue;
Received an initial payment, but missed the June 3rd deadline to submit their revenue information for additional funds;
Were ineligible for prior General Distribution funds due to a change in ownership and did not have Medicare fee-for-service revenue in 2019; or
Previously received Phase 1 General Distribution payment(s), but rejected and returned the funds and are now interested in reapplying.
Additionally, HHS planned to release detailed instructions and a data collection template for PRF recipient reporting requirements on August 17th. However, just days before, HHS announced that this information would not be ready by that date but will “soon be made available.” For more information on the PRF, review MGMA’s recently updated resource.