From Matt Zavadsky
For those who may not have heard yet, today, CMS released the waiver on Medicare treatment-in-place for ground ambulance services for the Public Health Emergency.
Several EMS Association leaders were invited to meet with CMS today as they announced the waiver.
This provides reimbursement to ambulance services for 911 responses to patients who are not brought to local hospitals due to a community-wide protocol designed to preserve health system capacity.
Typically, ambulance agencies are only reimbursed if they transport a patient to an emergency room.
Highlights of the waiver include:
- Medicare reimbursement for patients treated in place due to a community-wide EMS protocol.
- For dates of service starting March 1, 2020 and lasting through the end of calendar year in which the PHE ends.
- Can be billed through May 5, 2022.
- ALS and BLS base reimbursement eligible, depending on level of service provided.
- Does not require the use of telemedicine.
This waiver recognizes the value of the critical role EMS professionals play in the healthcare system.
THANK YOU to the members and leadership of the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians, American Ambulance Association, International Association of Fire Chiefs and International Association of Fire Fighters who collaborated to get this important legislation passed.
Thanks also to the Members of Congress for voting for this waiver, and the staff at CMS who have been very supportive of this initiative.