The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has published guidance online for states that opt to cover telemedicine services. Noting that “Telemedicine is viewed as a cost-effective alternative to the more traditional face-to-face way of providing medical care (e.g., face-to-face consultations or examinations between provider and patient),” the federal agency advises that a separate Medicaid State Plan Amendment (SPA) is not required if states “decide to reimburse for telemedicine services the same way/amount that they pay for face-to-face services/visits/consultations.”
In July 2014, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a 5-page informational bulletin related to services for those on the autism spectrum.
With many state agencies uncertain about what the CMS guidance means for them, many have taken no action yet. In February 2015, the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) co-sponsored a webinar, “CMS Guidance and Autism Spectrum Disorders”, that provides perspective on how one state (Connecticut) has responded to the CMS guidance. Featuring an impressive array of presenters from AUCD, Easter Seals and the Autism Society, the slides from that presentation and contact information for the speakers have now been archived and are available to the public. The audio recording of the AUCD webinar is not yet available but when it is, NAME will inform our members. For the autism webinar slides and bios of the speakers, click here: February 2015 autism webinar.
In a December 15, 2014 letter to State Medicaid Directors, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued guidance regarding “free care”. This topic appears in a number of previous CMS guidance documents, including: “1997 Medicaid and School Health: A Technical Assistance Guide,” and “2003 Medicaid School-Based Administrative Claiming Guide.” The 12/15/14 letter provides clarification on “free care” in light of 2004 Departmental Appeals Board (DAB) Decision Number 1924.
NAME hopes to continue providing you information on this topic, as we reach out to our federal partners at CMS.
The American Public Health Association and its Center for School, Health and Education website highlights the role of school-based health services in helping to prevent school dropout and improve graduation rates. In another publication demonstrating the inextricable link between health and academic success, the Center for Society and Health at Virginia Commonwealth University argues the cost effectiveness of public investments to reduce debilitating chronic conditions, save tax dollars and boost economic productivity. And, in recognition that school dropout poses a major threat to public health, the Healthy People 2020 goals include an indicator related to educational achievement for the first time.