Have Access to High-Quality Health Care Anywhere

Telepsychiatry Software

Planning for Telepsychiatry

Psychiatrists use their Macs or Windows PCs and webcams to provide highly effective assessments, therapies, and checkups with their clients through the Secure Telehealth app. Physicians may present from any location, which gives them more time to be productive.

The physicians who purchase Secure Telehealth meeting rooms may connect to clients from any facility at multiple organizations, including patients in their homes. Our app has an HD resolution at 30 frames per second and its security is end-to-end Advanced Encryption Standard encrypted. Secure Telehealth lets customers sign an HIPAA Business Associate Agreement, making it
HIPAA-compliant.

Features

Waiting Room

Our software at Secure Telehealth includes a virtual waiting room, which allows you to select the next patient into your meeting room.

Dual Monitor

Psychiatrists can use two monitors for telepsychiatry. One monitor shows the video full-screen, while the other shows the EMR software so patients can type notes in real time.

EMR Software

Secure Telehealth only provides video conferencing and does not offer any integration with the Electronic Medical Records (EMR) software. By working alongside the software, we cannot collect any patient information or pass any information to the EMR.

If you have no EMR software, you can check out Practice Fusion.

E-Prescribing Controlled Substances

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Office of Diversion Control released an Interim Final Rule on March 31, 2010, which provides physicians the option of writing prescriptions for controlled substances electronically. However, there has been some confusion about whether these regulations that took effect on June 1, 2010 have given physicians full authority to e-prescribe Schedule II to IV drugs.

You can check out the DEA’s site to view the Interim Final Rule.

Speech Pathology TelePractice

What happens when a rural school district is unable to recruit or retain a speech-language pathologist? An innovative and cost-effective solution to the health-care provider shortage in rural America is telepractice. At Secure Telehealth, we can provide speech-language pathology services to students in remote areas through our software.

How We Can Help

Secure Telehealth provides high-quality PC-based video conferencing services for your telepractice. This is used to connect speech-language pathologists to students in a convenient manner. All video conference sessions are encrypted at the highest level to ensure confidentiality.

Secured video conference sessions can be conducted from any location, including the speech pathologists' homes. No firewall changes are necessary, so the software is portable.

How It Works

The speech pathologist and school nurse will begin by logging in to a Secure Telehealth virtual meeting room from their computers. Next, the student will be brought into the nurse's office where all participants will see and hear each other through the conference call. They will have the chance to discuss therapy materials and activities through the share feature of Secure Telehealth software.

The students will engage in the activity while the speech pathologist is on the other side of the split-screen video. Therapy materials can be as simple as sharing pictures through a shared PowerPoint presentation. A popular feature of our software is allowing parents to observe from another computer.

Please watch the video below to see a simulation where a speech pathologist at her office or home is conducting therapy with a student in school. The student is also being attended by an eHelper at the school.

Rural Mental Health Clinics Use Secure Telehealth to Improve Access

Community-based mental health organizations and rural hospitals use Secure Telehealth to connect their clients to physicians who may be hundreds of miles away.

Benefits

With Secure Telehealth, clinics can share their meeting rooms with multiple part-time physicians. Telehealth, in general, has numerous advantages such as:

  • Improving outcomes for rural populations who might not be able to receive treatment.
  • Reducing no-show rates by allowing remote patients to see the doctor sooner, regardless of where the doctor is.
  • Improving the prospects of CBMHOs successfully recruiting physicians to work in rural areas.

FAQs

If the rule provides me with the option of prescribing electronically, where does the confusion lie?

Although regulations have given physicians permission, the problem remains that a physician’s e-prescribing software must first be certified to meet DEA requirements.

Make sure to ask your software vendor for documentation that confirms your product has been certified to meet the DEA’s requirements in prescribing controlled substances.

Not only must the software be certified, the pharmacies that wish to receive and process these prescriptions should also be signed up to participate with major e-prescribing exchanges such as Surescripts or RxHub.

When will my software become certified?

Part of the problem is the focus for software vendors to meet meaningful use requirements so that eligible providers can receive incentive payments in 2011. That being said, e-prescribing software certification was pushed aside and took longer than desired. Speculation has it that certifications will begin by late summer 2011.

Practice Fusion, a practice management/EMR software, uses Surescripts for their e-prescribing module. They stated that their software would alert all users as soon as the sending prescriptions for schedule II, III, IV, and V drugs become available.

Factors Affecting Quality

The quality of Secure Telehealth is top notch. You can email us at jim.mountain@securetelehealth.com for a 30-minute live demo. If you experience low quality, this could be due to the following:

  • Internet bandwidth (750kbits/second is required for uploads and downloads)
  • Computer speed (a dual-processor computer or a 2.8 GHz processor is needed)
  • The hardware used such as webcams and microphones; see our hardware recommendations here.

Insurance Reimbursement for Telepsychiatry

Qualification for reimbursement depends on your state. Look for your state here.

The location of the beneficiary is a factor in knowing your insurance reimbursement eligibility for Medicare. It is known that Medicare will only pay for telepsychiatry if the beneficiary presents from an approved facility type in a nonmetro county light green or white on the map. You can also check your state on the Census website.

Some of the exceptions of Medicare are the following:

  • Medicare will pay if the beneficiary presents from a Health Professional Shortage Area in a metro county.
  • Medicare will pay if the beneficiary presents from a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC)

Feel free to check out the Health Resources and Services Administration site for more information about the exempted areas for Medicare.

Insurance reimbursement depends on the state and on the private insurance company.

You must be licensed to practice in the state from which the consumer presents.

The American Telemedicine Association has published practice guidelines for telemental health.

You must notify your carrier that you are practicing through telemedicine to be eligible for insurance reimbursement.

Live video conferencing sessions are considered Protected Health Information (PHI). They fall under the scope of HIPAA. At Secure Telehealth, we take pride in being able to meet all of the HIPAA standards for technical safeguards. This is why we require users or the covered entities to sign a HIPAA business associate agreement.

In addition, the signee must safeguard the physical surroundings of the workstation providing access to protected health information.

Hospital Emergency Departments

To connect to on-call staff psychiatrists in their homes or professional offices, hospital emergency departments use Secure Telehealth's online video conferencing service. We offer the software through cloud computing.

Secure Telehealth provides training and 24/7 technical support to all endpoints, whether inside or outside the hospital. These are all included in the monthly fee. Interviews are also encrypted at the highest level by our software. Aside from that, confidentiality is assured even if the physician is presenting from a home network.

The specialist conducts assessments or evaluations by interviewing the patient remotely. They can determine whether to admit or discharge the patient based on medical factors as well as the interview or assessment results. Patients can benefit from telehealth by being able to skip the line in the ER waiting room.

Additional Resources

Article: "Telepsychiatry in the Emergency Department" from the California Health Care Foundation

Abstract: Patients who present in the Emergency Department (ED) with mental health issues often encounter long delays before being evaluated, admitted, transferred, or discharged. Arranging appropriate evaluation for these patients often disproportionately affects the operation of the ED, particularly in terms of space and staffing.

Some hospitals are using telemedicine to help evaluate ED patients. This report examines seven ED telepsychiatry programs in terms of their operational structure, financial support, and challenges they have encountered. It also looks at the potential value telepsychiatry could bring to the efficient operation of the ED as well as improved patient care.

The issues discussed in the report include:

  • Technology and Infrastructure

  • Financial Support

  • Federal and California Regulatory Issues

  • Licensing Requirements

  • Accreditation Standards

  • Reimbursement Related to Medicare, Medicaid, and Private Payers

The complete report is available for download here.

Telehealth Software for PCMH

Our face-to-face video technology at Secure Telehealth allows Patient-Centered Medical Homes to provide care coordination to their patients, as well as follow-up checkups, referrals, and specialist visits. Real-time access to specialists is accomplished without requiring the patient to leave the medical home. The physician can be located anywhere a laptop computer is connected to the Internet.

A HIPAA-compliant service uses PCs and webcams to deliver a high-quality video conferencing experience without the cost of expensive equipment. The consumer stays in the familiar surroundings of his or her medical home.

Secure Telehealth helps you meet many of the PCMH standards set forth by the NCQA published on July 24, 2018. You can achieve the following tasks:

  • After-Hours Appointments (Even If the Provider Is at Home)

  • Assess Patient Response to Medications (From Home)

  • Arrange or Provide Treatment for MH and Substance Abuse Disorders (Same-Day Treatment With Off-Site Provider
    via Telehealth)

  • Collaborate With the Patient/Family to Develop a Care Plan

  • Hold Regular Team Meetings (Across Facilities)

  • Offer Alternative Appointments (HIPAA Secure
    Video Conference)

  • Perform Patient-Specific Checks for Drug-Drug and Drug-Allergy Interactions (From Home)

  • Provide Bilingual Services (Across Facilities)

  • Provide Self-Management Tools to Record Self-Care Results (Check-In With Patients at Home)

  • Same-Day Appointments (Even If the Provider or Specialist Is at Another Facility)

  • Training Care Teams (Across Facilities)

  • Two-Way Communications Between Patients/Families and the Practice

ezgif.com-webp-to-jpg (13)

Patient-Centered Medical Home Telehealth

Secure Telehealth face-to-face video conferencing can be used to build a functional medical neighborhood for a Patient-Centered Medical Home.

Specialists can meet with primary care clinicians to coach them on handling particular diagnoses or conditions that frequently occur among the practice’s patients. This reserves consultations and referrals for the cases that require direct specialist involvement.

Aside from being tangible manifestations of greater coordination, these approaches—because they involve PCC and specialist interaction over time—can help strengthen relationships that facilitate further coordination efforts.

This reprint from the Coordinating Care in the Medical Neighborhood published by the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality shows how telehealth can improve collaboration within a medical neighborhood.

“Several approaches may be useful in increasing collaboration between specialists and PCCs. These include telemedicine and virtual consultation or case meetings on a panel of patients” (Yee 2011; Forrest 2009).

A high-functioning medical neighborhood can serve as a learning community that leads to relationships where PCCs and specialists effectively co-manage care. An example is Project ECHO (Extension for Community Health Care Outcomes), a health-care program targeted to rural and underserved populations in New Mexico, which uses specialists to train rural providers.

Project ECHO gives specialists technical competencies to serve vulnerable patients with chronic and complex diseases. This type of collaborative, learning community can help move the medical neighborhood from a focus on providing individual care to an emphasis on mutual responsibility for population health.

ezgif.com-webp-to-jpg (15)

Telehealth Integrates Behavioral Health Into Primary Care

Secure Telehealth’s software helps behavioral health organizations integrate mental health services into a primary care setting. Our app is particularly well suited for this particular task because it uses everyday devices. Instead of hiring a full-time BH specialist, PCP contracts with behavioral health agencies can provide on-demand assessments through telehealth.

Get in Touch

Strike while the iron is hot or while the consumer is motivated to seek mental health treatment. Saying "the doctor will see you now" is much more effective than "the doctor will see you in six weeks."

By purchasing a Secure Telehealth meeting room, you can save more by being able to collaborate with many (50-100) Primary Care Physician offices. For more information, you can contact Jim Mountain through email jim.mountain@securetelehealth.com or by calling him at (412) 837-9320.