Prevent Interruptions in Physical Therapy Act Passes Senate Committee
The US Senate Finance Committee has approved the Prevent Interruptions in Physical Therapy Act (S. 313), a piece of legislation proposing extended "locum tenens" provisions for physical therapists in rural and underserved areas. According to this PT in Motion article, the bill would “allow a PT to bring in another licensed physical therapist to treat Medicare patients and bill Medicare through the practice provider number during temporary absences for illness, pregnancy, vacation, or continuing medical education.” Sharon Dunn, the president of the APTA, called this a win for physical therapists and highlighted the PT community’s efforts during this month’s PT Day on Capitol Hill as being instrumental to the victory. For more information on this bill and what you can do to make an impact the legislation that will shape the future of PT, click here.
AMA Still Pushing for ICD-10 Contingencies
With the ICD-10 transition happening in under 100 days, the AMA is making a final push to establish contingencies for physicians who aren’t fully prepared for the transition. According to AMA President Steven J. Stack, "This transition to ICD-10, if it goes forward on Oct. 1, and that appears to be the current trajectory, [means] it is absolutely imperative that there is better end-to-end testing, a grace period, and hardship exemptions in place." One of the AMA’s proposed contingencies: a two-year grace period during which physicians could continue coding with ICD-9 and still receive full payments. While most physical therapists are ready for the transition, those who still need to prepare have plenty of resources available. If you’re feeling uneasy about October 1, you can get caught up in a hurry with the ICD-10 Crunch-Time Guide.