Have questions for us? service@covidmd.com

What We Do

CovidMD provides the public with information and services to safely navigate the COVID-19 outbreak. Our innovative telehealth platform screens users for a range of risk factors and connects at-risk participants with medical professionals via video chat for a telemedicine appointment – all from the convenience of a PC or smartphone.

Commonly asked questions for providers

  • Can I practice anywhere in the country?

    Since the COVID-19 crisis, physicians have been wondering whether they can treat patients anywhere in the country. Because telehealth lets you connect with patients in any location they have an internet connection, a doctor might as easily see a patient the across the country as across town.

    On March 15, for instance, the federal government waived all state licensure requirements for physicians for purposes of Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement during the COVID-19 crisis. Previously, one of the expectations for physicians participating in Medicare was that they have a state license in the state they are furnishing services. Now, with telehealth, a physician can perform and bill for Medicare or Medicaid services anywhere across the country, even if he or she doesn’t have a license in that state.

    However, states still need to take similar action to permit physicians to practice in their state without a state-specific license. Since states are responsible for actually licensing doctors according to their particular medical board rules, a federal waiver does not affect their requirements for licensing. So far, a number of states have in one way or another waived their requirements that a physician hold a license in their state if the physician holds a license in another state. California and Florida, for instance, will permit any licensed physician to perform services in their states currently. Other states, like Texas and North Carolina, have not gone that far, but have set up expedited licensing processes for out-of-state physicians looking to assist via telehealth during the emergency. When a state does this, not only is the service able to be covered by Medicare and other payors, but the physician is better protected from any allegation that he or she is practicing medicine without a license. Better still, the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC) allows doctors in a participating state to quickly obtain licenses from all other member states (currently at 28 states). Using these three methods together (licensure waivers, temporary emergency licenses, and the IMLC process), physicians can obtain licensure in nearly the entire country on a rapid basis.

    The federal government is strongly encouraging states to adopt a temporary licensure waiver or set up expedited processing for licenses. In a letter sent to all governors, the Department of Health and Human Services asked all states to temporarily suspend their licensing requirements if a physician was licensed in another state. While this is not mandatory, many have taken this approach. Notably, the guidelines for licensure are changing daily, particularly as states start to face higher incidents of COVID-19 diagnoses and are needing to react to the spike in demand for healthcare services. It is important to check the current status of waivers and temporary licenses to understand what is and is not permitted in each state – CovidMD is monitoring these changes in real time to assist our practitioners in providing these critical services in a compliant way.

  • Will I get paid?

    Current compensation is $50 per consult, which includes a $10 high demand payment. Consultations should run a maximum of 15 minutes. *Consults should run a maximum of 15 mins.

  • Do I qualify for your provider network?

    We have an immediate need for physicians specializing in internal medicine, emergency medicine, infectious disease, and primary care. That said, we encourage all medical professionals licensed to diagnose patients to help in this urgent crisis and become telemedicine providers.

  • Do I need a special license, certification, or practice area to provide telemedicine services?

    No. Anyone who is licensed to provide medical services can do so through telehealth technologies. Basic evaluation and treatment recommendations related to COVID-19 are essentially primary care services and all physicians (and, with some restrictions, nurse practitioners and physician assistants) have the requisite education, experience and licensing to treat patients who might have the disease. Particularly as the demands on our healthcare system skyrocket, all practitioners (regardless of specialty) have the legal capability to address this crisis as a result of their medical licensure. This includes surgeons, radiologists, oncologists, and other doctors who don’t normally see patients for primary care.

    Some states, like Ohio, used to have special certifications for telehealth providers, but these have largely gone away as states have become more comfortable with live audio-video telehealth modalities. Although it helps to be familiar with the technological requirements for rendering a telehealth visit, there is no special license, registration, or other authorization from either a state or an accrediting organization that a physician must get in order to provide services through telehealth.

    In fact, most states specifically explain that the standard of care for physicians is no different when services are provided through telehealth from when they are provided in-person. This means that a physician should approach a telehealth visit with the same seriousness, purpose, and planning that would go into a visit in the office. Documentation of services should be similar as should treatment recommendations. At the same time, physicians should understand some of the natural limitations of telehealth, including the ability to directly touch the patient and conduct portions of a physical exam, and refer the patient for additional in-person services when the need arises. This can help to avoid patient confusion, mismanagement, and ultimately malpractice claims.

    At this critical juncture, we need skilled and dedicated medical professionals to help us through the COVID-19 pandemic. It does not matter what your background or practice area is; if you are a licensed physician, you can treat patients for COVID-19 through telehealth.

  • Will you also be providing behavioral health services?

    Yes, we plan to offer behavioral health services in the near future to provide therapy and psychiatric visits via telehealth. Accordingly, we are also welcoming psychologists, therapists, and psychiatrists to our provider network.

  • Do you have malpractice insurance that covers your provider network?

    Yes, CovidMD has malpractice insurance that includes $3M per claim and a $5M annual policy aggregate. All providers are automatically covered under the policy upon contracting with us. Your existing malpractice insurance policy may also already cover telemedicine services, but you can ask your malpractice insurance company if an additional telemedicine rider is necessary if you are concerned.

  • Can I get in trouble for treating patients via telehealth? What if there is a problem?

    We are in the midst of a national emergency and physicians and other healthcare workers are on the front lines. At the same time, it would be naïve to think that there could never be any dissatisfied or, worse yet, harmed patients as a result of COVID-19-related evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment.

    Physicians face risks every day when treating their patients. Particularly with a largely unknown, highly contagious and potentially deadly disease, these risks are amplified. By the same token, patients need to get immediate care that is not hampered by concerns about whether the services are absolutely perfect. There needs to be a balance between the needs of patients and the focus (rightly so) of practitioners on their liability. States such as New York and New Jersey (which have so far been some of the hardest hit by COVID-19) have actually made emergency declarations that physicians and other practitioners cannot be held civilly liable for any injuries or death allegedly stemming from an act or omission by a medical professional acting in good faith and without gross negligence. As other states enter the critical phase of the COVID-19 response, it is possible that they may also grant immunity to healthcare workers on the front lines of this fight.

    Nonetheless, there is always the potential for liability related to improper diagnosis or treatment and whether that happens through telehealth or in-person, it doesn’t really matter. That is why physicians purchase malpractice insurance – to protect against mistakes that, even though they may result in patient harm, are impossible to avoid and are a part of the practice of medicine. We recommend that you contact your malpractice insurance company to discuss the scope of your coverage.

    In addition, At CovidMD, we recognize that limiting liability is important to our physician partners. We do this in two ways. First, we try to reduce the possibility that malpractice could occur in the first place. Not only do we work with highly trained physicians, but we have engaged a clinical leadership team made up of experienced epidemiologists, emergency and primary care physicians, and clinical researchers who are providing updates in real time on the best strategies and protocols (including from the CDC) to diagnose and treat COVID-19. We think that having a standardized clinical product that doesn’t allow any gaps in treatment not only best serves patients, but also ensures that our doctors get it right.

    Second, we provide legal protections from liability for our physician partners. We have purchased a malpractice insurance policy that covers physicians when they are performing services on our platform. This policy can be used to supplement any existing malpractice insurance you already have. In addition, our terms of use (signed by every patient prior to receiving telehealth services) specifically limits liability related to these telehealth services and provides an informed consent that specifically details the benefits and limitations of receiving healthcare through telehealth.

    While we can’t completely eliminate the risk related to medical practice, we’ve taken affirmative steps to both mitigate malpractice as much as possible and provide protection if it does happen.