CMS Releases CY 2021 Physician Fee Schedule
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule for Calendar Year (CY) 2021 which has traditionally included proposed changes to the Ambulance Fee Schedule for the same year. The American Ambulance Association (AAA) has confirmed with CMS that the reason there are no references to the Ambulance Fee Schedule in the Proposed Rule is because the temporary add-ons were built into the regulations themselves. Thus, the governing regulations already indicate that the temporary add-on payments for ground ambulance transports are effective for services furnished through December 31, 2022. The regulations are at 42 CFR §414.610 (c)(1)(ii) and 42 CFR §414.610 (c)(5)(ii).
The Proposed Rule also seeks to extend or make permanent several of the telehealth waivers CMS has implemented during the public health emergency. Because CMS does not believe it has the authority to reimburse ambulance providers or suppliers for services provided without transportation also occurring, these waivers have not applied to ground ambulance. However, we will review these provisions of the rule closely to identify potential opportunities to include ground ambulance providers and suppliers in these policies.