CMS makes telehealth permanent for home health




, CMS makes telehealth permanent for home health

CMS on Thursday made everlasting adjustments to telehealth flexibilities for house well being suppliers.

In its house well being cost rule for 2021, the company signed off on adjustments to permit suppliers to make use of telehealth for associated expert providers in the event that they’re outlined in a affected person’s care plan. It additionally requires supplies to explain how telehealth would enhance therapy in a affected person’s medical report. CMS bumped pay for house well being suppliers by 1.9%, or about $390 million.

“The usage of know-how could not substitute for an in-person house go to that’s ordered on the plan of care and can’t be thought of a go to for the aim of affected person eligibility or cost,” in keeping with a CMS truth sheet.

The company additionally rubber-stamped a 5% cap on wage index cuts for 2021 and adjustments to house infusion remedy that should go into impact by Jan. 1 underneath the 21st Century Cures Act. CMS primarily based its adjustments to 2021 cost charges for house infusion remedy providers on the 2021 doctor payment schedule, resulting in a zero.7% lower to house infusion suppliers—a reduce of about $385,000.

The rule takes impact Jan. 1.

Residence well being suppliers largely supported CMS’ plans to cowl telehealth, saying the rule would increase entry to care, particularly in rural areas. However the jury remains to be out on whether or not telehealth improves affected person care, stated the Medicare congressional advisory group MedPAC in its feedback on the proposed rule. The group apprehensive higher telehealth flexibilities may make Medicare extra weak to misuse or result in decrease entry to in-person take care of enrollees.

Congress created a brand new house infusion remedy profit underneath the Cures Act to permit Medicare beneficiaries to obtain medication or biologicals at house intravenously or subcutaneously.