Public Announcements

 

UPDATE: Information on TELEHEALTH SERVICES in NE - APTA

Dear Members,

We have been getting calls and emails about telehealth services in Nebraska and our ability to provide and get paid for those services.  APTA has done a wonderful job of providing resources for you – please access the links below for information about Telehealth.   This morning  Medicare is recognizing  telehealth services performed by PTs.  Here is the link to the announcement:  https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/fact-sheets/medicare-telemedicine-health-care-provider-fact-sheet  

See email below regarding Nebraska – we can provide telehealth services under the Uniform Credentialing Act and also regarding Medicaid – there are links for that.  Lastly, I will be sending a letter to BCBS of Nebraska to ask for temporary provision for physical therapists to provide telehealth services to their subscribers.     I have the link below from CMS and the impact on health providers since it was declared a national emergency.  Please read this also to help you decide on the delivery of physical therapy services in your clinics. 

Advisory:  PTs, Telehealth, and the Coronavirus

http://www.apta.org/PTinMotion/News/2020/03/09/CoronaAdvisoryTelehealth/ 

Telehealth in Physical Therapy in Light of COVID-19

http://www.apta.org/PTinMotion/News/2020/3/16/TelehealthCOVID19/

Challenges and Opportunities in Telehealth:  A Q&A With the Experts

http://www.apta.org/PTinMotion/News/2020/3/16/TelehealthCOVID19/ 

CMS:  COVID-19 Emergency Declaration Health Care Providers Fact Sheet

https://www.cms.gov/files/document/covid19-emergency-declaration-health-care-providers-fact-sheet.pdf

 

Email from:

Claire Covert-ByBee

Program Manager II, Office of Rehabilitation and Community Services 

NEBRASKA DHHS - Licensure Unit

 

“Good morning!  I've also been receiving questions regarding telehealth and PT/OT/SLP.  In statute, there were some laws passed during the past Legislative session regarding telehealth that are set out in the Uniform Credentialing Act.  As you know, the Physical Therapy Practice Act is under the Uniform Credentialing Act, and so the statutes in the UCA pertain to Physical Therapy.  These include 38-120.01, 38.120.02, and 38-1,143.  http://dhhs.ne.gov/licensure/Documents/UniformCredentialingAct.pdf

Additionally, there is the Nebraska Telehealth Act that sets out provisions for Medicaid coverage. http://dhhs.ne.gov/licensure/Documents/NebraskaTelehealthAct.pdf

I’m not very well versed on Medicare provisions or the insurance laws in general for commercial insurance (BCBS) so I can't comment on those specifically.
However, several Boards have met and discussed this topic over the past few years.  The Boards for PT, OT and ASLP have made the determination that care occurs where the patient is located and that it is up to the Nebraska Licensed provider to determine whether telehealth is the best method to deliver care. “

Grace

Grace Knott

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: 

below please find the questions I’ve received recently re: Telehealth (non the telephonic temporary services MLTC provider bulletin speaks to) and the answers to them in follow up to the discussion on our PAC Mtg call today.  Please reach out if any questions.

 

  • Is telehealth service cov'd by NTC?  If so are there any specific CPT codes or place of service info that must be used for these services outside of the standard billing? Yes, telehealth is covered by NTC. No special contracting/licensure/registration required.  Services are billed with standard codes and modifiers, with addition of also including a GT modifier to denote telehealth services.  POS 2 (Home) is an acceptable POS code.  Here is a link to our telehealth resource guide: https://www.nebraskatotalcare.com/providers/resources/telehealth.html

 

  • Do Tele-health services require pre-authorization like standard OT/PT/ST services?  If a patient already has an existing pre-authorization in place for OT/PT/ST and receives Tele-Health services is the existing pre-authorization valid for the Tele-Health service? No, a specific telehealth auth is not required.  PT/OT/ST services still require prior authorization.  If those services are authorized and delivered via telehealth that would be done using the units/existing authorization.

 

Telehealth services reimburse at same rate as face to face.  Additionally, telehealth services do need to be delivered via a HIPAA secure platform (typically skype or facetime does not meet that requirement).