Telehealth visits are available free of charge to patients with a concierge membership. We offer real-time, interactive consultations for adult patients with certain conditions and complaints residing in Georgia. Telemedicine offers you the ability to avoid scheduling time away from family and work just to make it to a doctors appointment. Best of all, there's no waiting rooms full of sick people to get you sicker.
If you are having or believe that you have a medical emergency please go directly to the nearest emergency room or call 911.
Existing concierge members are able to schedule telehealth visits on-demand. Please call or text the office and we will email your appointment link to the email we have on file.
If you are interested in becoming a concierge member, check out the concierge membership page for more information.
Insurance Coverage of Telehealth Visits
Are telehealth appointments covered by Georgia Medicare?
Yes. However, only for patients in rural areas. Telehealth for all other Georgia Medicare patients is a non-covered service.
Are telehealth appointments covered by private insurance?
Yes - this is mandatory by law in Georgia. However, patients with private insurance, including patients with Medicare Advantage plans, will be responsible for payment at the time of service. If you would like, you may be able to file a claim with your insurance company, who may reimburse all or part of the cost of your visit. You will be provided with the information and documentation necessary to file a claim. We no longer file insurance claims with any insurance companies.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Medicare temporarily extended coverage for telehealth visits. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022 authorizes a 151 day extension to the telehealth coverage provided by Medicare. This means that Medicare will likely suspend coverage for telehealth visits in March 2023.
Georgia Laws on Telehealth and Telemedicine*
In Georgia, the delivery of medical care via telehealth and telemedicine are governed by the "Georgia Telehealth Act". According to Georgia law, telehealth and telemedicine appear to be treated as the same practice for legal purposes.
In the state of Georgia, health insurance companies must cover services provided via telehealth. According to Georgia law,
An insurer shall not exclude a service for coverage solely because the service is provided through telemedicine services and is not provided through in-person consultation or contact between a health care provider and a patient for services appropriately provided through telemedicine services.
In addition, health insurance companies have to pay doctors the same for telehealth visits as they would for in-person office visits. So, if the insurance company typically pays the doctor $100 for an in-office visit, the insurance company also has to pay the doctor $100 for a telehealth visit. Georgia law on telehealth and telemedicine seemingly attempts to incentivize doctors to provide telehealth services. This concept aligns with the stated purpose of the law, which is to ensure greater access to healthcare services to patients in rural locations in Georgia. According to Georgia law,
An insurer shall reimburse the treating provider or the consulting provider... on the same basis and at least at the rate that the insurer is responsible for coverage for the provision of the same service through in-person consultation or contact;
The "Georgia Telehealth Act" has many other restrictions on insurance companies in regards to the payment of telehealth and telemedicine services. For example, insurances companies are not allowed to place restrictions on prescriptions for telehealth services that are greater than the law requires. Insurance companies also cannot dictate which electronic platforms are used by physicians - any telehealth platform that complies with federal and state law must be covered.
Rules and Regulations on Telehealth in Georgia
Although the "Georgia Telehealth Act" places a significant amount of statutory focus on how insurance companies are expected to incorporate into the digital healthcare landscape, doctors in Georgia are bound by other rules and regulations as a result of the "Medical Practice Act". The "Medical Practice Act" provides the legal authority of the Georgia Composite Medical Board to license and regulate the practice of medicine by physicians in Georgia.
Most, if not all, of the regulations pertaining to physicians practicing telemedicine in Georgia are outlined in Chapter 360-3, Investigations and Discipline. Specifically, Rule 360-3-.02 , Unprofessional Conduct Defined limits the situations a doctor is allowed to write prescriptions for scheduled medications. For example, doctors are not allowed to write prescriptions for stimulant ADHD medications unless they have completed an in-person examination of the patient at least once. There are some specific exceptions to this rule and physicians should refer to the appropriate rules and regulations for clarification.
*The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to constitute legal advice. All information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only. Please contact a licensed attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter.