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What Our Gov Is Doing

photo via @WhiteHouse via Twitter

On March 6, President Donald Trump signed an emergency funding bill in response to the coronavirus outbreak, which includes $500 million in waivers for Medicare telehealth restrictions, according to The Hill.

The measure includes $2.2 billion for health agencies to prepare for and prevent the spread of the virus in the United States, as well as more than $3 billion for vaccine research. The figure substantially exceeds the $2.5 billion in emergency funding that the White House initially proposed last week.

Five things to know:

1. The bill includes $8.3 billion in emergency funding, with $7.76 billion going to federal, state and local agencies. Around $2.2 billion is devoted to preventing virus spread across the U.S. and $3 billion for vaccine research.

2. CMS previously restricted payment for communication technology to beneficiaries in rural areas. That benefit was extended to all beneficiaries in this bill.

3. CMS also pays for non-face-to-face care management services and remote patient monitoring services, according to the fact sheet.

4. The CDC held a call on March 5 to address clinical guidelines for virtual treatment in the wake of the coronavirus spread, according to Politico.

5. American Well CMO Peter Antall, MD, said the company is preparing for an increased volume of telehealth appointments potential due to the coronavirus, according to Politico.

IF you have to get a Coronavirus test:

Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) covers a test to see if you have coronavirus (officially called 2019-novel coronavirus or COVID-19).

This test is covered when your doctor or other health care provider orders it, if you got the test on or after February 4, 2020.

Your costs in Original Medicare

You usually pay nothing for Medicare-covered clinical diagnostic laboratory tests.


Your provider will need to wait until after April 1, 2020 to be able to submit a claim to Medicare for this test

For further reading, click the highlighted text in

the paragraphs above.

As always, if you have any Medicare questions please give us a call.

All the Best,

Randall J. Lawson

Owner/Medicare Specialist

The HgO Group

803-851.0219 office

National Producer Number #9276045

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