In medicine, there is no one that is more credible than healthcare providers themselves. One of our customers began utilizing CareTrack’s Telecare in 2020. In 2020, TeleCare generated $2.3M in additional Medicare Reimbursements and is anticipated to exceed $4M in 2021.
Explore Dr. Brown’s case study below that he shared at a recent industry conference to gain insight into what CareTrack Health can do for your practice. Dr. Brown of White-Wilson Medical Center in Fort Walton Beach, Florida explains the benefits in implementing CareTrack Health’s Telecare service and how it can greatly improve your practice and your Medicare patients in a variety of ways.
Dear WWMC providers,
Since 2016, WWMC has partnered with a company called CareTrack Health to provide Chronic Care Management Services (CCM) to our eligible patients. CareTrack Health has partnered with WWMC for other initiatives as well. Unfortunately, many providers are unfamiliar with CCM, and we have recently identified ways to improve our implementation of CCM with CareTrack Health.
Therefore, I want to give you this high-level information on the purpose of CCM and CareTrack Health.
Chronic Care Management (CCM) with CareTrack Health
What is it?
- Chronic Care Management (CCM) is a monthly service that Medicare created in an effort to keep patients healthier, to stay out of the hospital, and, ultimately, to reduce costs. The service first became available to patients in 2015. It typically costs approximately $42 per month. Medicare covers 80% of this service as it does for all routine office-based care, and patients may be billed the remaining 20% of the non-covered portion of their bill ($8 per month). When patients haven’t paid off their deductibles early in the year, they may be billed the full $42, until their deductibles are covered. In fact, this program has been so successful at saving Medicare money (please read here for reference) that several private insurers have followed suit and are paying for CCM (see below).
- You can learn more about CCM at:
Why is this good for patients? CareTrack Health provides key benefits including:
- Monthly ‘quick phone link’ to providers and offices – Patients have access to a phone number to call 24-7 for medical help/support, etc. When patients contact CareTrack, CareTrack can then reach us, either through tasking us or our staff.
- Many of my patients emphasize how quick and easy it was to get an Rx filled by contacting this phone number.
- Continuous reminders to patients who need to work on lifestyle modification such as weight loss, smoking cessation, alcohol moderation, etc.
- Frequent patient monitoring of chronic condition statuses, like diabetes, CHF, hypertension, etc.
- Relief for your already burdened, overworked nurses. You can send messages to your patients through the CareTrack team, including lab results, simple instructions, etc., which is a very underutilized aspect of CCM. Simply send the task to CareTrack, and their staff will take care of it.
- High flexibility – CCM was designed to contact patients on a monthly basis; however, it is highly flexible and can be arranged for any time schedule requested by the patient or the provider.
- CareTrack considers these types of patients “critical” and “chronic but stable.” As you know, “critical” patients can be frequently contacted, very likely every week, while others, “chronic but stable,” may only need CCM every month, every three months or even ‘as needed’ – in which case the patient would only be billed when the patient utilized CCM (pretty cool!)
- Updated complex medication regimens and refills from patients
Why is this good for providers?
- CareTrack’s services add to the providers monthly Relative Value Units
How are patients enrolled in this? (this is an update to our previous protocol, so please read closely)
- CareTrack monitors our upcoming schedules and identifies eligible patients for CCM.
- CareTrack calls these patients and explains the program benefits, costs, protocol, etc.
- CareTrack creates the CarePlan for the patient and inserts it into the chart, sending it to the provider’s in-bucket.
- The Provider will be given a list of CCM eligible patients on each visit date.
- On the day of the visit, the provider mentions that the patient was contacted by CareTrack, and the provider verbalizes (hopefully, enthusiastic) support with patient enrollment in this program. The provider gives the patient their CCM card with the 24-7 phone number and asks the patient if they have any questions. Assuming the patient is still agreeable, the provider signs off on the G0506, and the patient is officially enrolled.
How do providers implement this for patients outside of the appointment setting?
- If you have a patient that is not currently enrolled or wants to re-enroll, please contact CareTrack through standard tasking. They will arrange for CCM enrollment.
- Many commercial insurance companies have seen the success of CCM in Medicare and are now also paying for CCM services. Unfortunately, it’s not 100% clear which will pay for this. If you have a patient with commercial insurance who would like to enroll in CCM, please contact CareTrack through standard tasking. CareTrack will enroll the patients and will take a ‘wait and see approach’ for insurance coverage. So far, CareTrack’s approach has been met with great success.
How will CCM notes be conveyed to providers?
- Monthly routine CCM updates will continue to be auto signed and available for viewing in the chart at any time.
- Monthly CCM updates with significant concerns will be forwarded to providers’ in-buckets and need to be manually signed by providers
- CCM is an important tool for us to help keep both “critical” and “chronic but stable” patients well.
Dr. Gil Brown III
White-Wilson Medical Center
Fort Walton Beach, FL