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Thursday Sep 19, 2013

Further delay in Medicare's face-to-face requirement for durable medical equipment

Two months ago, we noted that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) had extended until Oct. 1 the deadline for physicians to comply with requirements that they perform face-to-face encounters with patients before prescribing certain durable medical equipment (DME). As with other federal rules this year, physicians are getting more time.

On Sept. 9, CMS announced(www.cms.gov) that due to continued concerns that some physicians, other health care providers, and suppliers may need additional time to establish operational protocols necessary to comply with the rules it would not begin enforcing the DME face-to-face requirements at this time. Instead, the agency pointed to an unannounced date in 2014. The rules originally were to go into effect July 1, 2013.

CMS said it expects suppliers and physicians who order certain DME items to continue to collaborate and work toward compliance during the next several months. Those suppliers and physicians who are currently implementing the face-to-face requirement should continue to do so, the agency said.

CMS will continue to address industry questions concerning the new requirement and update information on its web site at www.cms.gov/medical-review(www.cms.gov).

– Kent Moore, Senior Strategist for Physician Payment for the American Academy of Family Physicians

Posted at 10:26AM Sep 19, 2013 by David Twiddy

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