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Psychiatr Serv ; 72(1): 100-103, 2021 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1059742


Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many mental health care services have been shifted from face-to-face to virtual interactions. Several health policy changes have influenced telehealth uptake during this time, including changes in technology, Internet connectivity, prescriptions, and reimbursement for services. These changes have been implemented for the duration of the pandemic, and it is unclear if all, some, or none of these new or amended policies will be retained after the pandemic has ended. Accordingly, in the wake of changing policies, mental health care providers will need to make decisions about the future of their telehealth programs. This article briefly reviews telehealth policy changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic and highlights what providers should consider for future delivery and implementation of their telehealth programs.

COVID-19 , Drug Prescriptions , Insurance, Health , Mental Health Services , Telemedicine , Continuity of Patient Care , Drug Prescriptions/standards , Humans , Insurance, Health/legislation & jurisprudence , Insurance, Health/organization & administration , Insurance, Health/standards , Insurance, Health, Reimbursement/legislation & jurisprudence , Insurance, Health, Reimbursement/standards , Mental Health Services/legislation & jurisprudence , Mental Health Services/organization & administration , Mental Health Services/standards , Telemedicine/legislation & jurisprudence , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Telemedicine/standards , United States
Telemed J E Health ; 26(11): 1310-1313, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-719187


This article reviews the current experience and the flaws encountered in the rush to deploy telemedicine as a substitute for in-person care in response to the raging coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; the preceding fault lines in the U.S. health care system that exacerbated the problem; and the importance of emerging from this calamity with a clear vision for necessary health care reforms. It starts with the premise that the precursors of catastrophes of this magnitude provide a valid basis for planning corrective measures, improved preparedness, and ultimately serious health reform. Such reform should include standardized protocols for proper deployment of telemedicine to triage patients to the appropriate level and source of care at the point of need, proper use of relevant technological innovations to deliver precision medicine, and the development of regional networks to coordinate and improve access to care while streamlining the care process. The other essential element is a universal payment system that puts the United States at par with the rest of the industrialized countries, regardless of variation among them. The ultimate goal is creating an efficient, effective, accessible, and equitable system of care. Although timing is uncertain, the pandemic will be brought under control. The path to a better future after the pandemic offers some consolation for the massive loss of life and treasure during this pandemic.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Triage/organization & administration , Disaster Planning/organization & administration , Humans , Insurance, Health, Reimbursement/standards , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/standards , Triage/standards , United States/epidemiology
J Vasc Surg ; 73(2): 392-398, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-628496


Implementation of telemedicine for patient encounters optimizes personal safety and allows for continuity of patient care. Embracing telehealth reduces the use of personal protective equipment and other resources consumed during in-person visits. The use of telehealth has increased to historic levels in response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Telehealth may be a key modality to fight against COVID-19, allowing us to take care of patients, conserve personal protective equipment, and protect health care workers all while minimizing the risk of viral spread. We must not neglect vascular health issues while the coronavirus pandemic continues to flood many hospitals and keep people confined to their homes. Patients are not immune to diseases and illnesses such as stroke, critical limb ischemia, and deep vein thrombosis while being confined to their homes and afraid to visit hospitals. Emerging from the COVID-19 crisis, incorporating telemedicine into routine medical care is transformative. By leveraging digital technology, the authors discuss their experience with the implementation, workflow, coding, and reimbursement issues of telehealth during the COVID-19 era.

COVID-19 , Pandemics , Patient Care , Telemedicine , Vascular Diseases , Clinical Coding , Humans , Insurance, Health, Reimbursement/economics , Insurance, Health, Reimbursement/standards , Licensure, Medical , Mobile Applications , Patient Care/economics , Patient Care/methods , Patient Care/standards , Patient Selection , SARS-CoV-2 , Telemedicine/economics , Telemedicine/organization & administration , Telemedicine/standards , Telemedicine/trends , United States , United States Department of Veterans Affairs , Vascular Diseases/diagnosis , Vascular Diseases/economics , Vascular Diseases/therapy , Workflow