CMS Approves Telehealth Cardiac Rehab During COVID-19 Pandemic

Responding to a key recommendation made by the ACC and other stakeholders, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) used emergency rulemaking authority to add cardiac rehabilitation (rehab) and intensive cardiac rehab services to the list of approved telehealth services outside the annual rulemaking process. ACC members also highlighted the importance of cardiac rehab services to members of Congress during virtual Legislative Conference visits last week, making this an important and notable ACC Advocacy "win."

This is a temporary addition as part of the response to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE). As with other services on the list during the PHE, waivers regarding originating site, communications platform, and other requirements are in effect. COVID-19 coding guidance from the spring will now apply to CPT codes 93797, 93798, G0422 and G0423. These temporary additions will end on the day the PHE ends.

Separately, CMS has proposed a policy that many flexibilities will remain in effect until Dec. 31, 2021, or the end of the calendar year in which the COVID-19 PHE ends, whichever is later. With the PHE already extended into January 2021, flexibilities for policies like remote direct supervision of tests would continue for at least the duration of 2021, providing stability for patients and clinicians.

Keywords: ACC Advocacy, Coronavirus, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (U.S.), Cardiac Rehabilitation, COVID-19, Public Health, Medicare, Medicaid, Current Procedural Terminology, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, Telemedicine


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