[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
July 19, 1995

Compensating Physicians for Telephone Calls-Reply

Author Affiliations

Albany Medical College Albany, NY

JAMA. 1995;274(3):217. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530030036027

In Reply.  —I share Dr Balon's annoyance at the time spent talking with third-party payers. Nonetheless, it is important conceptually and strategically to keep the two issues separate. The case in favor of compensating physicians for telephone encounters with patients is broader and stronger than that for calls with third-party payers. Greater medical judgment and risk are involved in calls with patients. Furthermore, compensating for calls with patients would result in more efficient medical care, more timely follow-up, and better documentation of telephone encounters.The computerized patient record of Dr Churgin provides important data on the frequency of telephone encounters in primary care. Moreover, this system will enable them to document the impact on the numbers of telephone and face-to-face encounters if their HMO decides to count telephone encounters when measuring productivity.I appreciate Dr Heath's support. He and Dr Spitz point out that lawyers charge for telephone calls. This

First Page Preview View Large
First page PDF preview
First page PDF preview