Washington Watch Weekly - May 8, 2020 | ASCRS
Washington Watch

Washington Watch Weekly - May 8, 2020

HHS Extends Deadline for CARES Provider Relief Fund Attestation to 45 Days

On May 7, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) extended the deadline for healthcare providers to attest to receipt of payments from the Provider Relief Fund and accept the Terms and Conditions. Providers will now have 45 days, increased from 30 days, from the date they receive a payment to attest and accept the Terms and Conditions or return the funds. As an example, the initial 30-day deadline for providers who received payment on April 10, 2020, is extended to May 24 from May 9, 2020. With the extension, not returning the payment within 45 days of receipt of payment will be viewed as acceptance of the Terms and Conditions.

ASCRS and ASOA Telemedicine Task Force Releases Addendum to Introduction to Tele-Ophthalmology Guide Reflecting COVID-19 Changes; CMS Expands Telemedicine Code List to Include Eye Codes

The ASCRS and ASOA Telemedicine Task Force released an Addendum to the Introduction to Tele-Ophthalmology Guide reflecting the recent coverage and reimbursement changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition, on April 30, CMS expanded and updated the list of telemedicine codes, which now includes the eye codes. Therefore, you may now bill 92002-92004 and 92012-92014 for audio/video telehealth visits. Note: We have requested a clarification regarding the waiving of the exam requirements. As you are aware, CMS specifically waived the exam requirements for 99201-99215.
We will keep you updated.

ASCRS and the Ophthalmic Pharmaceutical Coalition Request Extension of Pass-Through Period for Qualifying Devices, Drugs, and Biologicals Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic

On May 7, ASCRS and the members of the Ophthalmic Pharmaceutical Coalition, sent a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma requesting that CMS use its authority under Section 1135(b)5 of the Social Security Act to extend transitional pass-through status for qualifying devices, drugs, and biologicals due to the pandemic.

Due to the impact of the pandemic and the cancellation of elective procedures, which affect the utilization of these drugs, we are urging CMS to extend the statutory pass-through period for all products that have pass-through status as of April 1, 2020 and that would be policy packaged because they are “integral to” a procedure in both the HOPD and ASC settings for the duration of the public health national emergency. In addition, we are asking the agency to extend each policy packaged product’s pass-through at least one year from the date the Secretary announces the end of the public health emergency.

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