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PCPs: Learn More About Virtual Visits

As a primary care physician (PCP), you are the traditional first point of contact for patients when they are sick.

But primary care also involves disease prevention, patient education, health maintenance, and coordination of patients’ care across the broader health care system. So it’s important that our members stay in close contact with you.

That is why, in addition to coverage for in-person office visits, Highmark gives you another option to connect with our members — Virtual PCP Visits and Virtual Retail Clinic Visits.

These visits give you the option of remotely delivering primary care services to our members via real-time interactive audio and video telecommunications, or “telemedicine,” when appropriate. A patient can participate in a virtual visit from their home, office, or other private setting.

What are the advantages of virtual visits?

Virtual visits let you extend your reach and improve efficiency and effectiveness while still maintaining high-quality care and attention to patient safety.

Other benefits may include:

  • Increased primary care access for all members, including underserved populations in rural and remote areas.
  • Lower administrative costs for providers.
  • Reduced travel costs for members.
  • Ability to triage cases and help reduce emergency room visits and hospitalizations.

Who can offer virtual visits?

As a Highmark-participating primary care provider, you can offer virtual visits if you have the required telecommunications technology to properly conduct and support them. Services performed must fall under the scope of your license, and the sessions must be conducted following Highmark’s service and security guidelines.

Providing virtual visits for Highmark members is optional and not a requirement of our network providers.

For more information

To learn more about virtual visits, see Chapter 2, Unit 5, Pages 9–15 of the Highmark Provider Manual. The manual is located under Education/Manuals on our online Provider Resource Center.

Get help promoting virtual visits

If you already offer Virtual PCP or Virtual Retail Clinic Visits and want to promote those services to eligible Highmark members, see Chapter 2, Unit 5, Page 12 of the Highmark Provider Manual. There, you’ll find links to informational fliers that you can download, customize for your practice, and give to Highmark members.