Allina making changes to medical messaging billing policy

Allina Health is making changes to its billing policy for online medical messaging starting this month.

According to an email sent out by Allina Health, there will not be a charge for messages related to a recent visit, however people may be charged for messages unrelated to a recent visit.

Allina clarifies that “If you submit a medical message through your Allina Health account that is unrelated to a recent medical visit (within 7 days) and it requires medical decision making or a new care plan on behalf of your provider, you may be charged a fee.”

Listed below are examples of topics where medical messaging will not be charged:

  • Questions about a medical visit that occurred within the previous seven days  
  • Scheduling an appointment 
  • Prescription refill requests when refills remain available 
  • Lab or imaging results related to a recent visit  
  • Requests to complete medical-related forms 
  • Inquiries that lead to the recommendation of a new visit 
  • Updates for your provider not needing a response
  • Inquiries requiring a quick, simple response  

And below are examples of topics where medical messaging may cause a charge:

  • A new issue or symptom requiring a medical assessment or referral 
  • Medication adjustments 
  • Chronic disease check-ins 
  • Changes in a chronic condition 
  • Orders for labs or imaging 

Medical messages that fall into the category listed above will incur a $49 charge. Allina states that charges will be submitted to the insurance on file or billed directly to you.

The company says that submitting a medical message using your Allina Health account means you agree to a possible charge for the message. There will be a reminder about potential charges before submitting a message in your Allina Health account and you’ll be notified of a charge when your provider responds to the message with an assessment or a care plan.