By Matt Jurek DPT, CSCS
RTM Specialist

In today’s ever-changing healthcare landscape, staying ahead of the curve is crucial for physiotherapy providers. One revolutionary advancement that has transformed patient care is Remote Therapeutic Monitoring (RTM). In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the key aspects of RTM, including its benefits, codes, software requirements, and the potential it holds for both patients and healthcare providers.

What is Remote Therapeutic Monitoring?

Remote Therapeutic Monitoring involves leveraging technology to remotely monitor and manage patients’ health conditions. By collecting real-time data, analyzing it, and providing interventions without the need for in-person visits, RTM empowers patients to actively participate in their own care from the comfort of their homes.

Key Billing Codes for RTM

In the United States, to facilitate reimbursement for RTM services, specific codes have been established. These codes include:
  • 98975: This code covers the evaluation and training of the patient for Remote Therapeutic Monitoring. It enables healthcare providers to educate patients on the RTM process and how to interact with the monitoring devices or apps. The patient’s access and attempt to utilize the supplied device along with being under the therapist’s care for >16 days must be demonstrated in order to bill.
  • 98977: This code is applicable when patients interact with the provided monitoring devices or apps. If patients engage with the RTM system for at least 16 days out of a 30-day period, healthcare providers can bill this code to reflect patient compliance and involvement in their own care.
  • 98980 and 98981: These codes capture the additional time spent by physiotherapy providers in modifying Home Exercise Programs, tracking compliance, and engaging in synchronous communication (phone or video chat) with patients. If the cumulative time is greater than or equal 20 minutes, 98980 is eligible to be billed. For an additional cumulative 20 minutes in the same month, including an additional synchronous conversation, 98981 is eligible to be billed.

The Benefits of RTM

Several factors can influence exercise adherence to HEPs in physical therapy. Some of the key benefits include:

Improved Patient Compliance: Adherence to an HEP also prevents setbacks and re-injury, while helping to both maintain progress made during therapy sessions

Enhanced Patient Engagement: Real-time monitoring and personalized feedback through RTM empower patients to take control of their health, increasing their engagement in the treatment process.

Improved Time and Cost Savings: RTM reduces the need for frequent in-person visits, saving patients time and minimizing travel costs. It also enables healthcare providers to streamline their workflows and optimize their time, ultimately leading to increased efficiency.

Enhanced Patient Engagement: Real-time monitoring and personalized feedback through RTM empower patients to take control of their health, increasing their engagement in the treatment process.

e-Guide: RTM 101
Increasing Patient Satisfaction &
Clinic Reimbursement with Remote Therapeutic Monitoring (RTM)

Choosing the Right Software

To effectively implement RTM, providers need reliable software that meets regulatory requirements and streamlines the monitoring process. When selecting software, consider the following:

FDA Approval:

Ensure that the software and any wearable devices associated with RTM have the necessary approvals from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Integration and Features:

Look for software that integrates seamlessly with electronic medical record (EMR) systems and offers features such as tracking exercise progress, providing patient reminders, and enabling easy communication between patients and healthcare providers.

Compliance Tracking:

The software should have the ability to track patient compliance with exercise programs, device usage, and interaction with the RTM system, facilitating accurate billing and reporting.

Checklist to Get Started with RTM

Here is a quick checklist to get started with RTM:

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