Telehealth to Get New CPT Codes

The American Medical Association, creator of CPT codes, has turned its attention to the growing area of telehealth.

Marie Thibault

October 15, 2015

2 Min Read
Telehealth to Get New CPT Codes

Marie Thibault

Telehealth is a rapidly growing area of healthcare, with regulators and legislators following the space closely. Now, the latest advancements in telehealth are gaining additional legitimacy as the American Medical Association (AMA) is working to create new Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes for novel telehealth services.

In a recent press release, the AMA announced the first meeting of its new Telehealth Services Workgroup. There are more than 50 experts in the group, tasked with the job of helping create the list of new CPT codes and changes to the existing list. Of course, there already are some CPT codes for telehealth, including remote monitoring, chronic care management for patients at home, and off-site critical care monitoring.

"Input from the Telehealth Services Workgroup will help the CPT code set reflect new technological and telehealth advancements available to mainstream clinical practice, and ensure the code set can fulfill its role as the health system's common language for reporting contemporary medical procedures," Steven J. Stack, MD, president of AMA, said in the release.

The creation of the workgroup folllowed a stakeholder meeting held in June 2015 to gather recommendations on potential codes. According to a summary of that June meeting, some of the issues discussed included how telehealth technology services should be reported now, whether new codes should be created or if current CPT codes used with a modifier would suffice, and how to account for the different expenses incurred with telehealth services versus in-person services.

The future of CPT codes in telehealth will be shaped by those who know the field best—the experts working in the industry. Stack said in the AMA release, "Tapping into the clinical and technological expertise of the healthcare community and innovators produces the practical enhancements that CPT needs to reflect the coding demands of the modern health care system." 

If you want to learn more about CPT codes, check out the MD&M Minneapolis conference, November 4-5, 2015. Jolayne Devers, principal at JD Lymon Group, will be discussing "Competitive Strategies for CPT Code Use and Acquisition" on Nov. 4. 

Marie Thibault is the associate editor at MD+DI. Reach her at [email protected] and on Twitter @medtechmarie


About the Author(s)

Marie Thibault

Marie Thibault is the managing editor for Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry and Qmed. Reach her at [email protected] and on Twitter @MedTechMarie.

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