Payment Cuts Avoided in Proposed 2018 Physician Fee Schedule

The proposed 2018 Medicare physician fee schedule (PFS) released today by the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) includes some positive news for physical therapists (PTs)—a proposal to maintain the values of some current procedural terminology (CPT) codes commonly used by PTs, and even increase values for a few.

The proposed rule is a win for the profession and its ability to serve patients. CMS had been reviewing many of the CPT codes as potentially misvalued, putting them at risk for sizable reductions. The proposal includes no such reductions, a reflection of several years of work by APTA and its partners to maintain code values. Proposed increases in a few of the codes further underscore the effectiveness of those efforts.

APTA will be advocating to maintain these proposed payment values in the final rule which will be released in November, and will submit comments to CMS by the September 11 deadline.

CMS has also published a fact sheet summarizing the proposed rule.

In addition to the fee schedule, CMS also released its proposed rule for the 2018 outpatient prospective payment system.

APTA regulatory affairs staff are reviewing the proposed rules, and PT in Motion News will publish a follow-up report with more detailed information early next week.

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