In the beginning of December, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized cuts being made to reimbursement rates for therapy services provided to residents who are covered under Medicare Part B. In the same plan, CMS also expanded coverage for those receiving telehealth care during COVID-19.
According to the new fee schedule, a 9% cut has been made to physical and occupational therapy rates under Part B. This affects residents in skilled nursing facilities the most. Part B Medicare covers “dual-eligible” residents who qualify for both Medicaid and Medicare.
The expansion of coverage for telehealth services has been allowed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will benefit those situated in rural areas. CMS will also be conducting a study to evaluate the benefits and effectiveness of the expanded telehealth services. This could be monumental in how care is provided in the coming years.