Dear Alberta Physician,
The COVID-19 Pandemic has increased challenges in provision of healthcare across the globe. Out of concern for public safety during the pandemic, the Northwest Territories (NWT) has taken steps to reduce patient travel into Alberta where possible.
We would like to encourage you to consider whether the services requested for the patient who has been referred could be delivered in whole or in part by virtual care/telemedicine.
To facilitate care via telemedicine, the NWT’s Minister of Health and Social Services has approved exemption from NWT licensing and exemption requirements for the provision of telemedicine to patients residing in the NWT, by Physicians in good standing on the CPSA’s general register and having a referral for the care provided from a NWT Physician. Physicians meeting these criteria should contact the CMPA to ensure their coverage extends to the NWT.
In general, Physicians providing consultation by telemedicine to patients in the NWT do not require privileges/credentials with the Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority. Questions about credentialing can be directed to the Office of Medical Affairs and Credentialing at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Physicians providing telemedicine services to NWT patients may bill through Alberta Health Services using Alberta billing codes, which will be processed via the same reciprocal billing process used when seeing NWT patients in person.
If you do not meet the above requirements and wish to provide telemedicine services, you will need to complete a full application. For details on this, or for other questions, contact the Office of Professional Licensing at email@example.com.
Dr. AnneMarie Pegg,
Territorial Medical Director|Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority
Virtual Care Tools and consent
The CPSA has issued a statement to you outlining CPSA Advice to the Profession: COVID-19 Virtual Care (https://mailchi.mp/cpsa/cpsa-advice-to-the-profession-covid-19-virtual-care). The CPSA statement gives explicit instructions on verbal consent and documentation, which are both required to provide virtual care.
While phone is the simplest virtual care solution, it is recognized that video is often required to assess and manage patients.