During this public health emergency there has been an urgency to expand telehealth/telemedicine to help people receive a wider range of services from their doctors without going to a healthcare facility. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, telehealth was only covered under Medicare/Medicaid for rural providers and existing patients.
In order to reduce person-to-person contact with our most vulnerable population, and thereby decreasing the risk of exposure to COVID-19, the federal government through a waiver and the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act has expanded these services. The goal of this waiver program is to assist in keeping residents healthy by decreasing the risk of exposure while helping to contain the community spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The waiver became effective March 6, 2020 and will be maintained ongoing for the duration of COVID-19. Qualified providers who are permitted to provide Medicare telehealth services during this emergency waiver period include physicians and certain non-physician practitioners such as nurse practitioners, physician assistants and certified nurse midwives. Other practitioners, such as certified nurse anesthetists, licensed clinical social workers, clinical psychologists, and registered dietitians or nutrition professionals may also furnish services within their scope of practice and consistent with Medicare benefit rules that apply to all services. (This is not changed by the waiver).
If you have any questions regarding the telehealth waiver please click the link below: