Arkansas Total Care is making it easier for Arkansans to get the medical care they need through telemedicine and telephonic technologies. Telemedicine technology allows members to see a doctor, nurse practitioner or physician assistant remotely by using an audio-visual communication system.
On March 11, 2020, Governor Asa Hutchison declared a public health emergency on due to the coronavirus and the resulting sickness, COVID-19. In response to the declaration telemedicine regulations have been relaxed, such as restrictions on behavioral health services and the requirement to have an established relationship with the provider prior to telemedicine.
With the relaxation of statewide telemedicine regulations and restrictions; and the mandate for responsible social distancing, Arkansas Total Care is encouraging our members and all Arkansans to take advantage of telemedicine and telephone technology when seeking care. This benefit includes telemedicine or telephone counseling services provided by in-network behavioral health professionals including psychiatrists, psychologists, nurse practitioners and licensed professional counselors (LPCs) and licensed social workers (LCSWs).
Prohibition for the use of telemedicine technology for limited occupational, physical and speech therapy services has also been suspended. Services such as physical, occupational and speech therapies (PT/OT/ST) can be provided using telemedicine services by physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech-language pathologists. These services are available and billable to established patients until April 20, 2020. Sessions are limited to thirty minutes with a maximum of three sessions per week. Services must be provided utilizing both a video and audio component. Patients who are under 18 must have parental involvement during the session. Evaluations, re-evaluations, services provided by assistants and group services are not included in this telemedicine benefit.
In these days of declared emergencies and in all days to come, Arkansas Total Care is there for our members and our community, committed steadfastly to our purpose: Helping Arkansas Live Better.