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Editor's e-Note
Telehealth has been a revelation. Typically, the technology is less expensive and more convenient. What's not to like?

If you're a clinical documentation specialist or coder, documentation for these patient encounters could be a real headache. This month’s E-News Exclusive reviews several of the hurdles that must be overcome to properly chronicle this unique type of care.

Lee DeOrio, editor
e-News Exclusive
Telehealth Poses Documentation Challenges
By Tammy Combs, RN, MSN, CCS, CCDS, CDIP, CNE

According to a recent report from Parks Research, 64% of US broadband households reported using a telehealth service from April 2020 through April 2021. Thirty-four percent of those households reported they used telehealth services as the only option to see a provider during that time. According to a survey from Harris Poll, 35% of those surveyed would consider replacing their primary care provider if the telehealth options featured qualified physicians on demand. Bottom line? Telehealth is something that isn’t going away anytime soon.

With several studies pointing to higher patient satisfaction and lower provider costs, telehealth helps bridge the gaps in provider shortages in a cost-efficient manner. However, new methods of seeing patients brings new challenges in properly documenting telehealth visits and can compromise quality if not done correctly.

Consider the variables. The pandemic brought to light that no two households were alike. Some had access to internet, while others did not. Some patients continued seeking health care, while others put it on hold. Some people continued with their lives as if nothing new was happening, while others locked down only to emerge months later looking to make up for lost time—especially when it came to their health. These variables presented challenges and a variety of situations when it came to connecting with patients virtually.

Full story »
Other News
Increasing the Use of ICD-10 Z Codes May Help Address Social Needs in Primary Care
Poor health outcomes are often related to unmet social needs. Collecting and analyzing data through ICD-10 Z codes could provide more insight into this area, according to Healio.

CA Doctor Sentenced in Medicare Fraud Scheme Involving Upcoding
A California doctor billed Medicare more than $12 million for medically unnecessary vein ablation procedures using incorrect billing codes to receive higher reimbursement, according to RevCycleIntelligence.
Products & Services
New Report Analyzes Health IT Trends
Pivot Point Consulting has released its second quarter (Q2) Healthcare IT Directions Report, underscoring six trends certain to drive health IT decision-making in 2022. Pivot Point's team of experts continually studies and identifies top trends in health IT, sharing their insights and know-how with health IT leaders operating at a range of organizations, from hospitals and health systems to provider networks and payers. For Q2 2022, top-of-mind trends include the myth of The Great Resignation to the importance of the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement and enterprise resource planning. Pivot Point Consulting's Q2 2022 Healthcare IT Directions Report provides insights and recommendations to help leaders frame strategies, drive innovation, and operate efficiently in an unpredictable, rapidly evolving environment. Learn more »

PulsePoint Adds EHR Solution
PulsePoint announces the general availability of its programmatic approach to engaging health care providers (HCPs) within their point-of-care workflow. Clients using Life by PulsePoint, the company's media activation platform, can directly engage HCPs in real time within EHR systems while adhering to HIPAA and data privacy regulations. Designed to be turnkey, this new capability allows health care marketers to target provider identification numbers on various EHR platforms and trigger communications based on a variety of identifier and treatment codes, including ICD-10 codes. Once identified, HCPs can be reached using standard brand assets across various touch points within the EHR platform experience. This ensures that the messaging reaches providers at strategic treatment inflection points during the patient journey, at the point in time when patients are most receptive to receiving and retaining information about a treatment. Now, health care marketers have the ability to build awareness with brand messaging, deliver therapeutic messaging, distribute copay support, and enroll patients into patient engagement programs to improve health outcomes. Learn more »
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Industry Insight
Barret, Bowen Among New Sequoia Project Board Members

The Sequoia Project, a nonprofit and trusted advocate for nationwide health IT interoperability, recently announced this year’s board of directors and board-elected officers. Additionally, the company introduced the new Stakeholder Engagement Workgroup and launched two new Information Blocking Compliance Task Groups.

The Sequoia Project welcomes new board members Willarda Edwards, MD, of the American Medical Association, and Josh Mast of Cerner. The board of directors elected new officers, including the following:

• chairman: Michael Hodgkins, MD, retired, of the American Medical Association;

• vice chairman: David Horrocks of the New York eHealth Collaborative;

• secretary: Lee Barrett, executive director and CEO of Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission;

• treasurer: Rita Bowen of MRO; and

• immediate past chair and physician representative: Steven Lane, MD, of Sutter Health.

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