Part One – Navigating the New Normal

Like most businesses, COVID-19 has changed the way medical practices operate, virtually overnight. Those already offering Telehealth services to their patients were ahead of the game in their pandemic response. Practices new to telehealth services now find themselves navigating multiple business decisions, including if and how to implement telehealth in order to continue to see patients during this crisis, on top of navigating a complex regulatory environment that is changing almost daily.

Many may be asking, just what is Telehealth? The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines telehealth as the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support and promote long-distance clinical health care, patient and professional health-related education, public health and health administration. Technologies include videoconferencing, the internet, store-and-forward imaging, streaming media, and terrestrial and wireless communications. ( n.d.)

Dean Dorton spoke recently with leading practice administrators about their practice’s ability to expand or accelerate their telehealth service offering to accommodate their patients and generate revenue.

While you may have implemented whatever Telehealth solution you could weeks ago as a quick short-term solution, we recommend as you start to review your short-term and long-term plans, you take a step back and assess various platforms. It is critical to ensure you have the best Telehealth solution for your practice for your long-term strategic plans. Even if you do not plan on providing Telehealth as a main function of your practice in years to come, understanding your options and having one or two “on deck” for disaster plans is critical.

The first order of business for new practices working to implement Telehealth, is to select a HIPAA-compliant vendor. The following list contains vendors that represent providing HIPAA-compliant video communication products and will enter into a HIPAA Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with your entity:

  • Skype
  • Updox
  • VSee
  • Zoom
  • me
  • Google G Suite Hangouts Meet
  • Cisco Webex Meetings
  • Amazon Chime
  • GoToMeeting
  • Spruce Health Care Messenger

Dean Dorton has experts available to assist your practice in assessing and implementing an alternate business plan, including Telehealth initiatives, and partnering with you to navigate this complex regulatory environment. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our experienced team. We are committed to assisting you navigate any of your business challenges.

For more information on how the Coronavirus is impacting businesses across multiple industries, visit our COVID-19 resource page:

COVID-19 Resources