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April 2016
CLINICAL PRACTICE MANAGEMENT
CMS Waives Certain Restrictions for Telehealth Services
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently implemented a Comprehensive Care Joint Replacement (CCJR) Payment Model that aims to support better and more efficient care for beneficiaries undergoing hip and knee replacements, the most common inpatient surgeries for Medicare beneficiaries. This model tests bundled payment and quality measurement for an episode of care associated with hip and knee replacements to encourage hospitals, physicians, and post-acute care providers to work together to improve the quality and coordination of care from the initial hospitalization through recovery. 
 
Under this new model, certain provisions of CMS’ telehealth regulations are waived. Patients may now receive telehealth services in their homes or other places of residence, and may be located in any geographic location. Therefore this waiver allows for the provision of Medicare approved telehealth services to patients (captured in the CCJR payment bundle) without requiring patients to travel long distances or even leave their homes for services and follow-up care. All other regulations for the provision of telehealth services remain unchanged. For more information, see the IDSA website.


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