42 U.S.C. § 1395n - Procedure for payment of claims of providers of services

Cite as42 U.S.C. § 1395n

(a) Conditions for payment for services described in section 1395k(a)(2) of this title

Except as provided in subsections (b), (c), and (e), payment for services described in section 1395k(a)(2) of this title furnished an individual may be made only to providers of services which are eligible therefor under section 1395cc(a) of this title, and only if-

(1) written request, signed by such individual, except in cases in which the Secretary finds it impracticable for the individual to do so, is filed for such payment in such form, in such manner and by such person or persons as the Secretary may by regulation prescribe, no later than the close of the period ending 1 calendar year after the date of service; and

(2) a physician, or, in the case of services described in subparagraph (A), a physician, a nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist (as those terms are defined in section 1395x(aa)(5) of this title) who is working in accordance with State law, or a physician assistant (as defined in section 1395x(aa)(5) of this title) who is working in accordance with State law, who is enrolled under section 1395cc(j) of this title, certifies (and recertifies, where such services are furnished over a period of time, in such cases, with such frequency, and accompanied by such supporting material, appropriate to the case involved, as may be provided by regulations) that-

(A) in the case of home health services (i) such services are or were required because the individual is or was confined to his home (except when receiving items and services referred to in section 1395x(m)(7) of this title) and needs or needed skilled nursing care (other than solely venipuncture for the purpose of obtaining a blood sample) on an intermittent basis or physical or speech therapy or, in the case of an individual who has been furnished home health services based on such a need and who no longer has such a need for such care or therapy, continues or continued to need occupational therapy, (ii) a plan for furnishing such services to such individual has been established and is periodically reviewed by a physician, a nurse practitioner, a clinical nurse specialist, or a physician assistant (as the case may be), (iii) such services are or were furnished while the individual is or was under the care of a physician, a nurse practitioner, a clinical nurse specialist, or a physician assistant (as the case may be), and (iv) in the case of a certification made by a physician after January 1, 2010, or by a nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant (as the case may be) after a date specified by the Secretary (but in no case later than the date that is 6 months after March 27, 2020), prior to making such certification a physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant must document that a physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, certified nurse-midwife (as defined in section 1395x(gg) of this title) as authorized by State law, or physician assistant has had a face-to-face encounter (including through use of telehealth and other than with respect to encounters that are incident to services involved) with the individual during the 6-month period preceding such certification, or other reasonable timeframe as determined by the Secretary;

(B) in the case of medical and other health services, except services described in subparagraphs (B), (C), and (D) of section 1395x(s)(2) of this title, such services are or were medically required;

(C) in the case of outpatient physical therapy services or outpatient occupational therapy services, (i) such services are or were required because the individual needed physical therapy services or occupational therapy services, respectively, (ii) a plan for furnishing such services has been established by a physician or by the qualified physical therapist or qualified occupational therapist, respectively, providing such services and is periodically reviewed by a physician, and (iii) such services are or were furnished while the individual is or was under the care of a physician;

(D) in the case of outpatient speech pathology services, (i) such services are or were required because the individual needed speech pathology services, (ii) a plan for furnishing such services has been established by a physician or by the speech pathologist providing such services and is periodically reviewed by a physician, and (iii) such services are or were furnished while the individual is or was under the care of a physician;

(E) in the case of comprehensive outpatient rehabilitation facility services, (i) such services are or were required because the individual needed skilled rehabilitation services, (ii) a plan for furnishing such services has been established and is periodically reviewed by a physician, and (iii) such services are or were furnished while the individual is or was under the care of a physician; and

(F) in the case of partial hospitalization services, (i) the individual would require inpatient psychiatric care in the absence of such services, (ii) an individualized, written plan for furnishing such services has been established by a physician and is reviewed periodically by a physician, and (iii) such services are or were furnished while the individual is or was under the care of a physician.

For purposes of this section, the term "provider of services" shall include a clinic, rehabilitation agency, or public health agency if, in the case of a clinic or rehabilitation agency, such clinic or agency meets the requirements of section 1395x(p)(4)(A) of this title (or meets the requirements of such section through the operation of subsection (g) or (ll)(2) of section 1395x of this title), or if, in the case of a public health agency, such agency meets the requirements of section 1395x(p)(4)(B) of this title (or meets the requirements of such section through the operation of subsection (g) or (ll)(2) of section 1395x of this title), but only with respect to the furnishing of outpatient physical therapy services (as therein defined) or (through the operation of subsection (g) or (ll)(2) of section 1395x of this title) with respect to the furnishing of outpatient occupational therapy services or outpatient speech-language pathology services, respectively.

To the extent provided by regulations, the certification and recertification requirements of paragraph (2) shall be deemed satisfied where, at a later date, a physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant (as the case may be) makes a certification of the kind provided in subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (2) (whichever would have applied), but only where such certification is accompanied by such medical and other evidence as may be required by such regulations. With respect to the certification required by paragraph (2) for home health services furnished to any individual by a home health agency (other than an agency which is a governmental entity) and with respect to the establishment and review of a plan for such services, the Secretary shall prescribe regulations which shall become effective no later than July 1, 1981 (or in the case of regulations to implement the amendments made by section 3708 of the CARES Act the Secretary shall prescribe regulations which shall become effective no later than 6 months after March 27, 2020), and which prohibit a physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant who has a significant ownership interest in, or a significant financial or contractual relationship with, such home health agency from performing such certification and from establishing or reviewing such plan, except that such prohibition shall not apply with respect to a home health agency which is a sole community home health agency (as determined by the Secretary). For purposes of the preceding sentence, service by a physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant as an uncompensated officer or director of a home health agency shall not constitute having a significant ownership interest in, or a significant financial or contractual relationship with, such agency. For purposes of documentation for physician certification and recertification made under paragraph (2) on or after January 1, 2019 or no later than 6 months after March 27, 2020, for purposes of documentation for certification and recertification made under paragraph (2) by a nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant,,1 and made with respect to home health services furnished by a home health agency, in addition to using documentation in the medical record of the physician, nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or physician assistant who so certifies or the medical record of the acute or post-acute care facility (in the case that home health services were furnished to an individual who was directly admitted to the home health agency from such a facility), the Secretary may use documentation in the medical record of the home health agency as supporting material, as appropriate to the case involved. For purposes of paragraph (2)(A), an individual shall be considered to be "confined to his home" if the individual has a condition, due to an illness or injury, that restricts the ability of the individual to leave his or her home except with the assistance of another individual or the aid of a supportive device (such as crutches, a cane, a wheelchair, or a walker), or if the individual has a condition such that leaving his or her home is medically contraindicated. While an individual does not have to be bedridden to be considered "confined to his home", the condition of the individual should be such that there exists a normal inability to leave home and that leaving home requires a considerable and taxing effort by the individual. Any absence of an individual from the home attributable to the need to receive health care treatment, including regular absences for the purpose of participating in therapeutic, psychosocial, or medical treatment in an adult day-care program that is licensed or certified by a State, or accredited, to furnish adult day-care services in the State shall not disqualify an individual from being considered to be "confined to his home". Any other absence of an individual from the home shall not so disqualify an individual if the absence is of infrequent or of relatively short duration. For purposes of the preceding sentence, any absence for the purpose of attending a religious service shall be deemed to be an absence of infrequent or short duration. In applying paragraph (1), the Secretary may specify exceptions to the 1 calendar year period specified in such paragraph.

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