Continuity of care is important.
Federal law now ensures that PTs are able to take advantage of something APTA has been working on for several years—the ability to provide care continuity for Medicare patients in the PT's absence through a provision known as "locum tenens."
While APTA originally pressed for locum tenens to be extended to all PTs, the final version of the legislation applies only to PTs in non-metropolitan statistical areas, medically underserved areas (MUAs), and health professions shortage areas as defined by the US Department of Health and Human Services. Clearly, locum tenens allowances for PTs need to be expanded.
Why It Matters
Continuity of care is important, particularly in physical therapy. Patients shouldn't have to have their care interrupted, and PTs shouldn't be forced to suspend services during temporary absences for illness, pregnancy, vacation, or continuing medical education.
APTA supports expansion of Medicare locum tenens policies in ways that would make these provisions available to as many PTs as possible
Aug 10, 2021 / Position Paper
Using these arrangements, providers are able to ensure that their patient care does not lapse and that appointments are not missed at the same clinic.
Mar 1, 2020 / Article
Locum tenens allows a PT to bring in another licensed PT to treat Medicare patients and bill Medicare through the practice provider number.
Additional Locum Tenens in Medicare Advocacy Content
Mar 20, 2023 / News
If enacted, PTs across the country would be allowed to secure substitute care for patients during an absence.
Sep 20, 2022 / Roundup
Here's the status of APTA-supported legislation on the fee schedule, telehealth, prior authorization, the PTA differential, and more.
Aug 1, 2022 / Roundup
District offices, town halls, maybe a visit to your clinic? Here are some topics worth mentioning.