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  • Coronavirus Update: March 27, 2020

    A Medicare payment increase, PT telehealth for UnitedHealthcare, APTA tracks telehealth payment changes, and more.

    Practice Guidance

    March 27: COVID Stimulus Package Includes Payment Increase, Opens Telehealth Possibility
    An increase to Medicare payment, temporary relief for some student loans, the potential expansion of telehealth allowances, and help for small businesses are among the provisions that are especially relevant for physical therapy.

    March 27: UnitedHealthcare Allows Telehealth for Physical Therapy
    UnitedHealthcare, the country's largest commercial health insurer, announced a major shift in its coverage policies during the COVID-19 pandemic: Beginning immediately, the payer will reimburse physical therapy delivered via telehealth services. The change is the most wide-ranging payer acknowledgement of PTs as qualified telehealth providers to date, and it moves UHC well past CMS' and a few other payers’ current waivers allowing for limited "e-visit" digital communications between PTs and patients.

    March 27: Charts From APTA Track Payer, Government PT Telehealth Policies
    Now available from APTA: a regularly updated set of resources that track payment and regulatory policies related to the provision of telehealth by PTs.

    March 30, 3 pm: APTA Hosts Facebook Live Event, "Implementing Telehealth in Your Practice STAT"
    APTA will host a Facebook Live version of its sold-out March 26 webinar that featured a panel discussion with experienced telehealth PTs providing insight on how they implement telehealth in their practices.

    From CDC

    March 25: CDC Releases PPE "Burn Rate Calculator"
    A new app helps providers calculate the rate at which PPE will be used in their facilities.

    In the Media

    March 27: What's Inside the Senate’s $2 Trillion Coronavirus Aid Package
    From National Public Radio: a breakdown of the six main groups that will receive relief through the stimulus.

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    Charts from APTA Track Payer, Government PT Telehealth Policies

    The new resources from APTA are intended to be used as quick-reference guides to help you stay on top of changes in whether and how telehealth can be used in physical therapy — PTs should still check with payers and state governments.

    Keeping up with the rapidly changing telehealth environment during the COVID-19 pandemic can be dizzying. APTA can help steady things.

    Now available from APTA: a regularly updated set of resources that track payment and regulatory policies related to the provision of telehealth by PTs The resources exist in five separate files:

    The pages are intended as quick reference only; PTs should still carefully review individual payer policies and state laws and regulations before making a decision on providing telehealth to any patient.

    APTA will update the content of the summaries weekly to keep up with changes.

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information on the pandemic as it relates to the profession.

    UnitedHealthcare Allows Telehealth for Physical Therapy

    The major change, effective until June 18, permits PTs to be reimbursed for telehealth services using the company's typical billing codes but is subject to state laws and regulations.

    UnitedHealthcare, the country's largest commercial health insurer, announced a major shift in its coverage policies during the COVID-19 pandemic: Beginning immediately, the payer will reimburse physical therapy delivered via telehealth services. The change is the most wide-ranging payer acknowledgement of PTs as qualified telehealth providers to date, and it moves UHC well past CMS' and a few other payers’ current waivers allowing for limited "e-visit" digital communications between PTs and patients.

    The new benefits are set to end on June 18 and are subject to state laws and regulations around telehealth, but, if permissible, they enable PTs, occupational therapists, and speech therapists to provide true telehealth services and use their typical billing codes. Eligible codes will be reimbursed by UHC with a place-of-service code 02 and the 95 modifier.

    The UHC change is a significant improvement for PTs. Until now, national private insurers including UHC and Aetna, have been following CMS' lead and allowing only e-visits, a limited form of digital communication restricted to only a portion of codes, and not truly considered telehealth.

    While the COVID stimulus package on the horizon allows the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to apply a waiver permitting PTs to engage in telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries, those waivers are unlikely to happen without a strong advocacy effort from the physical therapy profession — an effort that APTA is facilitating through a template letter to send to CMS that makes the case for the change.

    Carmen Elliott, MS, APTA's vice president of payment and practice management, said that the UHC change is big news.

    "The fact that the largest insurer in the country has temporarily shifted its reimbursement policies around telehealth is important in terms of patient and provider care and safety during this pandemic," Elliott said. "But it's also a tremendous opportunity for the physical therapy profession to demonstrate its ability to operate effectively in the telehealth space."

    Coronavirus Update: March 26, 2020

    New PT practice guidelines for COVID patients in acute hospitals, Cigna opens up telehealth for PTs, a call for postacute care COVID preparedness, and more.

    Practice Guidance

    March 26: New Practice Guidelines for Physical Therapy and COVID-19 in Acute Hospital Setting
    A new set of recommendations for physical therapy related to COVID-19 in the acute hospital setting acknowledges the necessity of involvement of PTs well-trained in respiratory physical therapy, but cautions that facilities should be judicious in their use. The recommendations have been endorsed by APTA, the Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Section, and the Academy of Acute Care Physical Therapy, albeit with a few caveats that not all of the Australia-based guidance will apply in the U.S.

    The recommendations are limited to PTs and "other relevant stakeholders" in acute care settings who are providing care to patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. The guidance includes more than 60 recommendations ranging from shift planning to the specific types of PPE PTs should wear.

    March 26: Cigna Adopts Telehealth Policy for Physical Therapy
    Insurer Cigna announced a series of temporary changes that open the possibility for telehealth by PTs, occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists. The measures allow for reimbursement of PT services that include codes 97161 (evaluation, low complexity, 20 minutes, telephone or virtual), 97162 (evaluation, moderate complexity, 30 minutes, virtual), and 97110 (therapeutic exercises, two unit limit). Codes must be appended with a GQ modifier and billed with a standard place-of-service code. Cigna recommends that providers follow CMS guidance on the use of a specific software program but states that it will not require the use an specific software for now.

    March 30, 3 pm: APTA Hosts Facebook Live Event, "Implementing Telehealth in Your Practice STAT"
    APTA will host a Facebook Live version of its sold-out March 26 webinar that featured a panel discussion with experienced telehealth PTs providing insight on how they implement telehealth in their practices.

    From U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

    March 25: HHS Says That Providers Can Share Patient's COVID Status With First Responders
    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued guidance that the HIPAA Privacy Rule allows health care providers to share protected health information on an individual who has been diagnosed with or exposed to COVID-19 with first responders without the individual's permission under certain circumstances. Situations under which HIPAA-covered entities can share this information with law enforcement, paramedics, and other first responders include but are not limited to: when the information is needed to provide treatment; when they are reporting to public health authorities; and when first responders may be at risk of infection.

    In the Media

    March 25: JAMA Viewpoint Stresses the Need to Address Postacute Care Challenges Related to COVID-19
    Authors of an opinion piece in JAMA warn that postacute care facilities may be overwhelmed in much the same way hospitals could soon experience as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses through the population. They stress the need for immediate capacity-building, and urge policymakers to implement additional policies such as paid sick leave for staff, enhanced Medicare rates, and reimbursement for hospital-at-home models "at parity with institutional hospital care."

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    Coronavirus Update: March 25, 2020

    UnitedHealthcare allows e-visits, HHS presses states to ease regulations, HPA shares an interoperability opportunity, and more.

    Practice Guidance

    March 24: UnitedHealthcare Follows CMS Lead on "E-Visits"; Still Excludes "Telehealth" by PTs
    Although developments are happening too rapidly for posting on its website, UnitedHealthcare has announced that it will follow the CMS 1135 waiver policy allowing for a particular type of digital communication between a PT and patient known as an "e-visit." E-visits are not considered telehealth, and UHC explicitly statedthat it will still exclude reimbursement for outpatient therapy services delivered under telehealth. APTA offers an extensive Q&A resource on e-visits, including details on coding and the required "patient portal."

    E-visits through UHC will be paid as carve-outs, separate from the per-visit flat rate. Insurer fee schedules may take up to 60 days to complete fee schedule updates.

    UnitedHealthcare is the second major insurer to adopt the CMS e-visit policy for PTs: earlier in March, Aetna made a similar move. See the second item in the March 19 APTA Coronavirus Update for details and links.

    March 25: HPA Curates Resources on Interoperability, Telehealth Providers
    HPA the Catalyst, APTA's component focused on health policy and administration, now offers information for providers on how to gain free access to on-demand patient record retrieval service across the continuum from Kno2, one of the interoperability providers for most of the EHR vendors in postacute care and outpatient settings. Also available: a matrix on audio and video telecommunicationsto help you evaluate telehealth vendors, created by the HPA Technology Special Interest Group and the Frontiers in Science, Rehabilitation, and Technology Council.

    March 26, 2 pm: APTA Hosts Facebook Live Event on International PT Response to COVID-19
    Join APTA and physical therapists from the UK and Canada for a live discussion of how the physical therapy profession is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic internationally. Participants will include Michel Landry, BScPT, PhD, a professor at Duke University and affiliate in the Duke Global Health Institute, who will provide an overview of disaster management and epidemiology, and share experiences from working in other disasters.

    From Health and Human Services

    March 25: HHS Tells States to Ease State Laws and Regs
    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is calling on states to take "immediate actions" to relax laws and regulations that HHS thinks could get in the way of effective health care responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The recommended actions include licensure exemptions and disciplinary moratoriums, waiver of telemedicine practice prohibitions, relaxation of scope-of-practice requirements, and easing of malpractice liability.

    From the Department of Labor

    March 24: Labor Department Provides More Information on Paid Sick Leave, FMLA Expansion
    With requirements now in place for employers with 500 or fewer employees to provide paid sick leave and expanded FMLA benefits, the Department of Labor is rolling out guidance for both employers and employees. The latest resources — a fact sheet for employers, a fact sheet for employees, and a questions and answers document — shed light on a number of issues, including how to count hours for part-time employees, employee information on qualifying reasons for leave, and how small business can obtain exemptions from the mandates.

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    APTA Components Step up to the COVID-19 Challenge With Ever-Growing Resources

    From helping physical therapy faculty move their courses online to conducting a webinar on providing acute care physical therapy during a pandemic, association chapters and sections are keeping the profession informed and creating an impressive array of tools.

     

    "We are going through this, day by day, doing our best to make a positive impact on society in a moment in time when there are no easy solutions."

    That's how APTA President Sharon Dunn, PT, PhD, described the physical therapy community's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. And APTA's components — its sections, academies, and chapters — as well as its councils and academic groups, have been taking on the challenge by offering resources informed by their particular perspectives and expertise.

    Here's a roundup of just some of what's available so far from APTA components.

    [Editor's note: offerings from these and other APTA components are growing by the day — APTA's Chapters and Sections webpage provides direct links to all component websites.]

    American Council of Academic Physical Therapy's COVID-19 Response Webpage
    ACAPT's webpage collects a wealth of information, both from the council and related organizations including APTA, with a focus on online and distance learning. The place to go for lots of great information from individual universities and faculty members.

    APTA Colorado: Coronavirus Information for Providers
    The regularly updated site from APTA Colorado includes key information from local public health agencies, small business resources, and opportunities to volunteer. Another recent addition: a slide deck from a presentation on physical therapist practice and mechanical ventilation.

    APTA Geriatrics Webinar: Resources for Teaching Online Geriatric Content
    This webinar, which was held March 19 but is now available as a recording, is targeted at PTs and PTAs in academic programs who teach geriatric content and are interested in resources and strategies for delivering this content online. Topics include how to continue with labs and practicals, as well as online test-taking.

    California Physical Therapy Association: COVID-19 Webpage
    The California Chapter provides a mix of information specific to California and more general resources and guidance, including a recorded webinar on social distancing and APTA resources on telehealth. Upcoming: a March 26 virtual meeting, "Telehealth: Moving Digital Practice Forward in Physical Therapy."

    HPA The Catalyst: COVID-19 Updates and Resources
    APTA's component focused on health policy administration offers a COVID-19 webpage featuring an in-depth set of questions and answers related to telehealth and physical therapy, as well as links to a source for free access to an on-demand patient record retrieval service and a compiled listing of audio and video telecommunications services, an excel file that helps you sort out telehealth and e-visit vendors that may be a good fit for your practice.

    APTA Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy: COVID-19 Updates
    The Academy's website has been reconfigured with a focus on COVID-19 and includes regular updates. Special features on the site: a multi-resource update on providing pediatric physical therapy via telehealth, and updates on the status of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act—IDEA—as various legislative relief packages are being worked out on Capitol Hill.

    APTA Private Practice Section: Critical Resources for Managing Your Business During the COVID-19 Pandemic
    The Private Practice Section's extensive resources include frequently updated information on telehealth, plus perspectives on topics including cash flow modeling, paid sick leave, and making determinations around what is and isn't "essential care." The section has also created a special open-access issue of its Impact magazine solely devoted to COVID-19.

    APTA Rhode Island: Updates Regarding COVID-19
    The Rhode Island Chapter's COVID-19 page is arranged in an easy-to-follow format that divides regularly updated content into various buckets: telehealth, APTA statements, outpatient practice resources, school-based physical therapy resources, and more. Latest additions include resources on home care, with a section on care for the elderly coming in the near future.

    FiRST Council Telehealth Discussion Board
    Since its inception, APTA's Frontiers in Rehabilitation, Science, and Technology Council has been at the forefront of the conversation around telehealth in physical therapy. Its discussion board remains the go-to for insight and illuminating exchanges on what has become a crucial topic.

    Academy of Acute Care Physical Therapy and HPA, The Catalyst webinar: Acute Care Physical Therapy and COVID-19 — How Can We Add the Greatest Value?
    The APTA sections focused on acute care and health policy joined forces to deliver a March 19 webinar, now available as a recording that takes a close look at how to provide the best care in hospitals in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Topics include managing and triaging physical therapy resources, caring for the critically ill, physical therapy in the ED and more. The slide presentation from the webinar is also available for download.

    Know of more component resources to share? Post them to APTA's Component Leaders discussion page or share them in the comments below.

    Coronavirus Update: March 24, 2020

    APTA joins effort for stepped up NPE response by Congress; new template letter for telehealth; wound care considered "essential," and more.

    Practice Guidance

    March 24: APTA Joins Push for PPE, More Consistent Recommendations for Use
    A letter endorsed by 19 health care professional organizations not only urges Congress to step up efforts to supply providers with PPE, but to get CDC and other agencies on the same science-based page, and to take steps to ensure that shortages won't happen again.

    "We need proper support to care for patients safely and effectively," the letter states. "This includes clear, evidence-based protocols and highest level of protection in order to care for infected individuals as well as prevent the spread of the coronavirus in health care facilities and the community. Congress and the Administration must exhaust every option available to increase PPE production and prioritize distribution to frontline providers and health care facilities."

    March 24: New Coalition Connects Health Care Organizations With PPE Suppliers
    The PPE Coalition and the US Digital Response Team are collaborating on Project N95, connecting personal protective equipment manufacturers with state and local governments and health care providers and institutions who submit a request. According to their website, they hope to have millions of units available for distribution within the coming weeks.

    March 24: APTA Offers Template Letter to CMS Advocating for Telehealth for PTs, PTAs
    APTA has developed a template letter for you to use in advocating to CMS for Medicare coverage of telehealth furnished by PTs and PTAs to ensure that patients continue to have access to the rehabilitative care they need amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Instructions are included at the top of the letter.

    March 24: Multiprofessional Group Including APTA Says Wound Care Is an Essential Activity
    The Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders, a group that includes APTA, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, the Amputee Coalition, and others, issued a statement countering hospital decisions to shut down outpatient-based wound care departments as "non-essential" during the coronavirus pandemic.

    "Nonhealing wounds, left untreated and unmanaged, can result in significant medical issues including infection, sepsis, the need for limb amputation, and even death," according to the statement. "As a result many procedures provided by wound clinics are essential — not elective — to protect the health of patients and prevent an escalation of their disease."

    From the CDC

    March 23: CDC Study on Cruise Ship COVID Transmissions Finds Virus Present on Surfaces 17 Days After Last Contact
    Testing on the Diamond Princess, the Grand Princess, and other ships found SARS-CoV-2 present on some surfaces after passengers — some asymptomatic — had vacated the ship 17 days earlier.

    From CMS

    March 23: CMS Approves Medicaid Waivers in 11 States
    Alabama, Arizona, California, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, and Virginia have received section 1135 waivers on a range of requirements including prior authorization, provider enrollment, public notice mandates, and fair hearing request timelines.

    In the Media

    Health Care, Tech, Nonprofits Collaborate in COVID-19 Response
    A group of high-tech firms, large health care systems, nonprofits, and others are partnering to utilize data analytics to evaluate the effectiveness of community mitigation efforts, identify at-risk populations who need diagnostic testing, and optimize health care delivery and supply chain operations.

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    APTA Joins Push for PPE, More Consistent Use Recommendations

    A letter endorsed by 19 health care professional organizations not only urges Congress to step up efforts to supply providers with PPE, but to get CDC and other agencies on the same science-based page, and to take steps to ensure that shortages won't happen again.

    The federal government needs to not only do more to ensure that personal protection equipment is available to all health care workers, it needs to do a better job of providing consistent science-based advice on the use of PPE: That's the message APTA and 18 other health care professional organizations sent to Capitol Hill as the COVID-19 pandemic triggers shortages of crucial protective supplies.

    In a March 20 letter to the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, APTA and other organizations including the American Nurses Association, the American Academy of Physician Assistants, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, and the American Occupational Therapy Association urged legislators to take steps to "ensure that personal protection equipment … is available to all health care systems, facilities, and providers to ensure safe working environments during the current COVID-19 pandemic and any future crisis."

    The letter doesn't simply address supply shortages, however. The organizations also press for "more definitive and aligned statements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) about the transmission of coronavirus." Right now, the letter states, "the recent guidelines from both agencies differ on what masks or respirators are needed for health care providers."

    "Before any new guidance is released, the appropriate agency must have clear scientific evidence that the change in standards is proven to keep clinicians and their patients safe," the letter states, adding that "we urge Congress to include language in the next supplemental package to ensure the CDC communicates to the public the data-driven transmission science behind this decision."

    In addition for increased PPE availability and more consistent, science-based usage recommendations, the organizations also press for a list of additional actions by Congress, including mandating that a sustainable inventory of PPE be maintained at the Strategic National Stockpile, requiring that the Department of Health and Human Services develop better reporting rules around PPE use, and commissioning studies from the Government Accountability Office to review "root causes" of the current shortages as well as worldwide supply chain issues that could be improved in anticipation of future pandemics.

    According to Justin Elliott, APTA vice president of government affairs, the PPE letter is just one piece of the association's advocacy efforts around the coronavirus pandemic. Other efforts include grassroots communication efforts to increase telehealth opportunities for PTs and PTAs, and a push to press Congress for additional relief to physical therapy providers and patients.

    "In these extraordinary times, we need to not just react to current challenges but also be forward-thinking, looking at every possible avenue to ensure safety," Elliott said. "PPE is certainly one key element, but we're also keenly aware of opportunities to reduce transmission risk through new ways of thinking about providing care, including via telehealth. At the same time, we need to anticipate the potential harm this crisis could do to clinicians' livelihoods."

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    Coronavirus Update: March 23, 2020

    Tips on what to ask about telehealth; guidance on paid leave law; coronavirus "self-checker"; CMS enrollment relief, and more.

    Practice Guidance

    March 23: APTA Recommends PTs Ask Specific Questions About Telehealth Provisions
    As telehealth provisions evolve rapidly at the state, federal, and private payer levels, it's crucial that PTs fully understand what does and doesn't apply to them. Here are five questions to ask payers and state agencies.

    March 19: APTA Private Practice Section Provides Guidance on Paid Leave Law
    The Families First Coronavirus Response Act signed into law last week includes requirements for employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide paid sick time and extended FMLA leave. This resource from the APTA Private Practice Section provides a summary of the law, and suggestions on next steps for private practices.

    March 19: APTA Private Practice Section Publishes "General Considerations" Related to COVID-19
    There are growing list of "what ifs" that PTs in private practice need to consider around the coronavirus — this resource from the APTA Private Practice Section covers a range of possible scenarios, ranging from employee illness to responding to drops in demand.

    From the CDC

    March 23: CDC Debuts Online Coronavirus "Self-Checker"
    The CDC is now offering an app designed to help individuals who wonder if they're experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. Called "Clara," the program asks a series of questions that include symptoms being experienced, age, geographic location. Based on answers provided, Clara recommends actions to be taken, from calling 911 to staying home and contacting a health care provider.

    From CMS

    March 23: CMS Issues FAQs on Medicare Provider Enrollment Relief
    As part of the 1135 waiver process in place during the coronavirus pandemic, CMS is easing some requirements related to provider enrollment in Medicare, including waivers to site visits and criminal background checks associated with fingerprint-based background checks, as well as postponement of all revalidation actions. This recently published list of frequently asked questions about the waivers includes a list of Medicare Private Enrollment Hotline numbers.

    From the Department of Labor

    March 22: Labor Department Provides Information on Paid Leave Law, Fair Labor Standards Act
    With the Families First Coronavirus Response Act now signed into law, the U.S. Department of Labor has published resources that explain the essential elements of the mandated paid leave now in place for employers of fewer than 500 people. Also included on the page: questions and answers about the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act.

    In the Media

    March 23: IBM and DOE Launch COVID-19 Computing Consortium
    IBM has partnered with the Department of Energy to launch the COVID-19 High Performance Computing Consortium, which will combine supercomputing capabilities from 16 systems to help researchers better understand SARS-CoV-2 and develop potential therapies and a vaccine. Consortium partners include Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, the National Science Foundation, NASA, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Amazon, and Google.

    March 22: FTC Warns of Coronavirus Scams
    The Federal Trade Commission is warning the public of malicious websites, robocalls, and other scams -- including dishonest websites selling disinfectants and medical supplies, and others selling unapproved products purporting to cure or prevent contracting the virus.

    March 22: Therapy Continues During Crisis, But Worries Over Protective Supplies and Employment Loom
    From Skilled Nursing News: "Even with heightened concern amid the spread of the virus, and with the threat of protective gear declining, therapists are still jumping in to help patients get well — in spite of great risk and putting in extra hours."

    March 19: Nursing Home Outbreaks Lay Bare Chronic Industry Problems
    From Associated Press: " Burgeoning coronavirus outbreaks at nursing homes in Washington, Illinois, New Jersey and elsewhere are laying bare the industry’s long-running problems, including a struggle to control infections and a staffing crisis that relies on poorly paid aides who can’t afford to stay home sick.”

    Visit APTA's Coronavirus webpage for more information and updates.

    Asking the Right Questions About Telehealth

    It's not enough to ask if telehealth is permitted by a state agency or payer: You need to ask specific questions to understand what you can and can't do.

    As the coronavirus pandemic worsens, PTs and PTAs are looking for answers around what they can and can't do in terms of telehealth. APTA's advice: Get the right answers by asking the right questions.

    According to Alice Bell, PT, DPT, APTA senior payment specialist, in addition to federal-level changes around digital communications with patients, the telehealth environment is also evolving rapidly at both the private payer and state regulatory levels.

    "Right now, there's a great deal of confusion around the coverage of telehealth when provided by physical therapists," Bell said. "Some broad policies and federal and state legislation may be interpreted as including physical therapists even though this is not explicitly stated."

    Daniel Markels, APTA state affairs manager, says that miscommunication can make matters worse.

    "If a PT calls a payer and asks if telehealth is covered, the payer may say yes not knowing that it's a PT asking the question or what codes the physical therapist intends to bill," Markels said.

    That's why APTA recommends that, besides having a solid understanding of the limitations in state licensure scopes and relevant state and federal laws, PTs ask the following questions when communicating with a payer or state agency about whether telehealth is permitted for physical therapist services:

    • Will services provided by physical therapists (and PTAs working under the direction and supervision of the PT) be covered when provided via telehealth?
    • If so, what codes should be billed and what modifiers are required?
    • What device(s) or application(s) can be utilized?
    • What, if any, consents are required?
    • Are there any special documentation requirements?

    [Editor's note: Official guidance and best practices related to telehealth and e-visits could change rapidly as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to evolve. For the most current information from APTA, see our main Telehealth webpage and visit our APTA.org/Coronavirus/ webpage.]