Friday, December 21, 2018

DoD Proposed Rule Published to add Physical and Occupational Therapy Assistants as TRICARE Authorized Providers

Dan Ciolek

On December 20, 2018, the Department of Defense published a proposed rule titled “TRICARE; Addition of Physical Therapy Assistants and Occupational Therapy Assistants as TRICARE Authorized Providers.”  The proposed rule summary states the following:

“The Department of Defense is publishing this proposed rule to add certified or licensed physical therapy assistants (PTAs) and occupational therapy assistants (OTAs) as TRICARE-authorized providers to engage in physical therapy or occupational therapy under the supervision of a TRICARE-authorized physical therapist or occupational therapist in accordance with Medicare's rules for supervision and qualification when billed by under the supervising therapist's national provider identification number. This rule will align TRICARE with Medicare's policy, which permits PTAs or OTAs to provide physical or occupational therapy when supervised by and billed under a licensed or certified physical therapist or occupational therapist.”

The comments deadline in February 19, 2019.   As some AHCA members furnish therapy services under the TRICARE benefit, AHCA will be evaluating this proposed rule related to potential impact on SNF TRICARE therapy services.  Please contact AHCA’s Dan Ciolek, Associate Vice President, Therapy Advocacy if you have questions or comment recommendations.

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