The North Star State is a wonderful place to enjoy the snow and practice telepsychiatry! Telepsychiatry brings quality mental health care to rural and underserved areas via teleconferencing technology. Telepsychiatry can positively impact the overall mental health of the state.
Telepsychiatry is commonly used throughout the state of Minnesota. The rules and regulations regarding the practice of telemedicine in Minnesota are fairly permissive, and because of this, it’s a growing practice. The Great Plains Telehealth Resource Center (gpTRAC) is the regional group that helps support the implementation and utilization of telemedicine in Minnesota. Iris is a proud member of gpTRAC and attends their events every year. They have been a great partner in providing care via telepsychiatry throughout the state.
Iris gives Minnesota an A- rating for being an awesome state for providing telepsych services. You rock, Minnesota!
MENTAL HEALTH IN THE LAND OF 10,000 LAKES
According to the Minnesota Department of Human Services, one in five Minnesotans face mental illness each year. One in 25 people live with serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, and one in 10 young people experienced a period of major depression. Suffering from mental illness often means people will have a 10-25 year shorter lifespan than others.
There are a total of 124 child and adolescent psychiatrists in Minnesota. This means that there are only 10 psychiatrists per every 100,000 children in the state, putting Minnesota at a severe shortage. Telepsychiatry can change this for the better.
MINNESOTA TELEMEDICINE RULES & REGULATIONS
Telemedicine means the delivery of healthcare services or consultations while the patient is at an originating site and the licensed health care provider is at a distant site, according to Minnesota State Law. Telemedicine may be provided by means of real-time two-way, interactive audio and visual communications, including the application of secure video conferencing or store-and-forward technology. This technology provides and/or supports health care delivery, which facilitates the assessment, diagnosis, consultation, treatment, education, and care management of a patient’s health care. Minnesota is an Interstate Medical Licensure Compact state.
REIMBURSEMENT FOR TELEMED IN MINNESOTA
Minnesota Law requires telemedicine consults to be paid at the same rate as in-person services. Store and forward technology includes telemedicine consults that do not occur in real time, and that do not require a face-to-face encounter with the patient for all or any part of the consult. Email, phone, and fax services are not eligible for reimbursement.
IMPLEMENTATION OF TELEPSYCH IN MINNESOTA
Implementing your own telepsychiatry department in Minnesota is simple to do with appropriate knowledge and guidance. Besides abiding by HIPAA regulations, there are no specific restrictions related to technology requirements. There are several successful telepsychiatry programs in Minnesota that serve as excellent models to help health care systems looking to implement telemedicine.
IRIS IN MINNESOTA
Iris believes Minnesota is a great state to work and play! We are happy to have developed many relationships in Minnesota. We are currently working on providing telepsychiatry services in a hospital system, including ED consults and inpatient rounding. We look forward to growing our reach in Minnesota, including providing outpatient and specialty services in other areas.