Bipartisan Legislation Would Permanently Expand Medicare Telehealth Access for Physical Therapy
During the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth services have played an important role in enabling continued patient access to physical therapy.
Physical therapists have ensured seniors and other at-risk patient populations can manage their pain, regain strength, and enhance mobility — all while minimizing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, preventing costly hospitalizations, and reducing unnecessary strain on the healthcare system during the public health emergency (PHE) — by providing physical therapy services via telehealth.
This has been possible thanks to a provision put into place by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) during the PHE, but this telehealth expansion has not yet been made permanent.
Fortunately, Congress is taking action with bipartisan legislation to solve this problem.
The Expanded Telehealth Access Act (H.R. 2168/S. 3193) would make permanent the temporary policy that allows physical therapists and physical therapist assistants to deliver and bill for services provided via telehealth under Medicare.
Lawmakers need to hear from physical therapy professionals and community stakeholders that we support this bill. Your advocacy if critical to moving this legislation forward.