The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) has recently unveiled the Telemedicine Toolkit to prepare hospitals for wider adoption of the technology.
According to AHIMA, hospitals and practices can use the toolkit to assess potential opportunities relating to their particular needs as well as to analyze documentation, legal and reimbursement practicalities ahead of establishing their own telehealth program.
Also, the toolkit — available for free to AHIMA members — can help guide the development of telehealth programs with a particular focus on virtually and securely engaging patients in ways that align with business and clinical strategies, and existing information governance programs.
"This new AHIMA toolkit gives HIM professionals and healthcare providers the resources to understand the exact process and regulations that are needed to put a successful telemedicine program into action," AHIMA interim CEO Pamela Lane said in a statement. "The value of telemedicine is its ability to increase patient access to healthcare, making the proper care possible, in many cases, and more convenient in others."
AHIMA's move comes after the announcement made by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which saw a significant increase in telehealth claims of Medicaid payments. OIG expects this trend to continue, with the U.S. House of Representatives recently passing legislation to reimburse physicians and hospitals for using telemedicine tools to conduct visits with patients across state lines.