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  • APTA Summary Available for National Proposed Coverage TENS Treatment for CLBP

    APTA has posted a summary of the recent National Coverage Analysis Proposed Decision Memo from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) for chronic low back pain (CLBP). For patients meeting the specified definition of CLBP in the memo, CMS proposes coverage only when those patients are enrolled in a clinical study. The clinical study must address whether TENS provides a clinically meaningful reduction in pain, improvement in function, or reduction in other treatments or services. In addition, the study must adhere to specified standards of scientific integrity and relevance to the Medicare population.

    CMS will accept public comment on this proposed decision memo through April 12. APTA will submit comments on behalf of membership.

    The summary is available to APTA members on the Medicare Coverage Issues webpage under the "TENS" heading.

    'Outstanding Work' Represented in April PTJ

    The articles in this month's PTJ demonstrate documentation of effectiveness of current physical therapy interventions, proposed novel interventions, and the application of knowledge to different patient populations. As you listen to this month's Craikcast, keep in mind that—as  illustrated in the article by Wiles, Matricciani, Williams, and Olds—in 1945, the typical paper in PTJ  was anecdotal, authored by 1.4 US authors who worked in hospitals, and consisted of 4 pages and 4 references. In 2010, the typical paper used a cross-sectional survey or randomized controlled trial design, with 4.6 authors working in universities across the globe, and consisted of 12 pages and 49 references.