• The Center for Connected Health Policy (CCHP) has created this video primer on how Medicare policy gets created, who can act to make changes and the difference between "telehealth" and "communications technology based services (CTBS)".

Medicare Telehealth Billing Resources:

  • The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has created a List of Telehealth Services payable under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule when furnished via telehealth.  This list was updated in February 2023.  Everything on the list will be covered through the end of Calendar Year (CY) 2023.  Updates for CY 2024 will be addressed through the normal Physician Fee Schedule update process.  The fee schedule is updated annually and takes effect on January 1 or each year.  Proposed changes are published in the Federal Register by November of each year.

Resources Related to the Unwinding of the Public Health Emergency (PHE):  During the PHE, individuals with Medicare had broad access to telehealth services, including in their homes, without the geographic or location limits that usually apply as a result of waivers issued by the Secretary, facilitated by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2020, and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. “Telehealth” includes services provided through telecommunications systems (for example, computers and phones) and allows health care providers to give care to patients remotely in place of an in-person office visit.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, extended many telehealth flexibilities through December 31, 2024, such as:

  • People with Medicare can access telehealth services in any geographic area in the United States, rather than only those in rural areas.
  • People with Medicare can stay in their homes for telehealth visits that Medicare pays for rather than traveling to a health care facility.
  • Certain telehealth visits can be delivered audio-only (such as a telephone) if someone is unable to use both audio and video, such as a smartphone or computer.

Medicare Advantage plans may offer additional telehealth benefits. Individuals in a Medicare Advantage plan should check with their plan about coverage for telehealth services. Additionally, after December 31, 2024 when these flexibilities expire, some Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) may offer telehealth services that allow primary care doctors to care for patients without an in-person visit, no matter where they live. If your health care provider participates in an ACO, check with them to see what telehealth services may be available.

The PHE officially came to an end on May 11, 2023.  Here are a number of resources to help you prepare for the unwinding of the PHE which takes place in different stages between May 11, 2023 and December 31, 2024.  Guidance and policies continue to be somewhat of a moving target so check back frequently for updates and changes and make sure you check the update date for all documents!