CMS Publishes Interim Final Rule Making It Easier For Healthcare Professionals To Order, and Receive Payment for Ordering, COVID-19 Tests

On May 8, 2020, The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published an interim final rule (75 FR 27550) with comment period that gives individuals and entities that provide services to Medicare, Medicaid, Basic Health Program, and Exchange beneficiaries needed flexibilities to respond effectively to the serious public health threats posed by the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Recognizing the critical importance of expanding COVID-19 testing, CMS is amending several Medicare policies on an interim basis to cover FDA-authorized COVID-19 serology tests, to allow any healthcare professional authorized to do so under State law to order COVID-19 diagnostic laboratory tests (including serological and antibody tests), and to provide for new specimen collection fees for COVID-19 testing under the Physician Fee Schedule and Outpatient Prospective Payment System.  These changes apply to physicians and other practitioners, hospice providers, federally qualified health centers, rural health clinics, hospitals, critical access hospitals, community mental health centers, clinical laboratories, teaching hospitals, providers of the laboratory testing benefit in Medicaid, Opioid treatment programs, and quality reporting programs for inpatient rehabilitation facilities, long-term care hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, home health agencies and durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies suppliers.  Any comments must be filed by July 7, 2020.

  • See the proposed rule here.
  • Submit comments on the proposed rule here.

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