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CMS expands telehealth again, makes other changes

CMS expands telehealth again, makes other changes

WASHINGTON - CMS has made another round of changes to support health care providers during the coronavirus pandemic, including allowing physical therapists and occupational therapists to provide telehealth services.

“For the duration of the COVID-19 emergency, CMS is waiving limitations on the types of clinical practitioners that can furnish Medicare telehealth services,” the agency stated. “Prior to this change, only doctors, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and certain others could deliver telehealth services.”

Also among the expansions to telehealth: CMS is waiving the video requirement for certain telephone evaluation and management services, opening the door for Medicare beneficiaries to use an audio-only telephone to get telehealth services.

Additionally, CMS is changing its process of adding new services to the list of Medicare services that may be furnished via telehealth to a sub-regulatory vs. a rulemaking process, allowing the agency to consider requests by practitioners now learning to use telehealth as broadly as possible.

Other non-telehealth related changes include CMS not enforcing certain clinical criteria in the LCDs that limit access to therapeutic continuous glucose monitors for beneficiaries with diabetes, giving clinicians greater flexibility to allow more of their diabetic patients to monitor their glucose and adjust insulin doses at home.

For a full list of changes, go here.


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