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The Future of Your Health Care Using Telehealth Services

| July 28, 2021
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2021 could be the pivotal year for how businesses operate moving forward. Will they offer employees a work from home option, will Zoom meetings be standard procedure, will telehealth replace typical doctor visits? The answers are still being worked out, but it's worth exploring now so you're prepared for what lies ahead.

Telemedicine and mobile health open up opportunities making health care more manageable and accessible for both the doctor and the patient. Health services are already tracking vital signs with remote monitoring devices, communicating through web portals, and even receiving on-the-spot care from doctors via video chat. If you feel comfortable self-monitoring your data and submitting it using a mobile device, and reviewing lab results via a patient portal, then you might find the new face of health care a welcome change. Add to these benefits the ability to get the care you need 1) from the comfort of your home, 2) without missing work, and 3) without sitting for extended periods in a waiting room.

So, what's the cost of all this convenience?

Medicare Part B covers certain telehealth services. You pay 20% of the Medicare-approved amount for your doctor or other health care provider's services, and the Part B deductible applies. For most telehealth services, you'll likely pay the same amount as in-person services. To find out how much your test or service will cost, talk to your doctor or health care provider. 

Starting in 2020, Medicare Advantage Plans offered more telehealth benefits—check with your plan to see what additional benefits it now offers.

If your coverage is through Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage Plan, you won't have to pay out-of-pocket costs (called cost-sharing) for COVID-19 tests. 

Medicare made these changes to telehealth in 2020:

  • You can get telehealth services at either renal dialysis facilities or at home
  • You can get telehealth services for certain emergency department visits at home
  • You can get certain physical and occupational therapy services at home
  • Medicare covers some services delivered via audio-only devices
  • Medicare also covers virtual check-ins and E-visits

As the face of health care changes, we're your trusted partners. We’re here to help answer questions, ensure you’re aware of any policy changes, and help guide you through any resulting financial implications. Call us today, and together let's prepare you for a new generation of health care.

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This document is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as legal or tax advice. One should consult a legal or tax professional regarding their own personal situation. Any comments regarding safe and secure investments and guaranteed income streams refer only to fixed insurance products offered by an insurance company. They do not refer in any way to securities or investment advisory products Insurance policy applications are vetted through an underwriting process set forth by the issuing insurance company. Some applications may not be accepted based upon adverse underwriting results.  Death benefit payouts are based upon the claims paying ability of the issuing insurance company. The firm providing this document is not affiliated with the Social Security Administration or any other government entity.

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[1] https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/telehealth

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