The 2022 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule released on November 2 by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) added certain services to the Medicare telehealth services list through December 31, 2023. Last year, we wrote about temporary “Category 3” services that were added to the Medicare services list for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE). Now, these services that would have otherwise been removed after the PHE ends will remain on the telehealth services list through calendar year 2023. CMS issued a Fact Sheet regarding the rule.

Category 3 telehealth services in the final rule include home visits for established patients, emergency department visits, critical care services, and hospital and nursing facility discharge day management services. CMS also extended the inclusion of two new cardiac rehab codes through calendar year 2023.

Beyond the expanded service list, CMS is amending the definition of “interactive telecommunications system” to include audio-only communications technology when used for telehealth services for the diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of mental health disorders furnished to established patients in their homes under certain circumstances. Generally, however, other services on the Medicare telehealth services list, unless specifically excepted, must still be furnished using audio and video equipment permitting two-way, real-time interactive communication.

This post was written by Jeffrey Ehrhardt, an incoming Rivkin Radler associate pending admission to the New York Bar.