CMS Announces Additional Waivers and Flexibilities for Healthcare Provider Response to COVID-19

On April 30, 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it had issued additional waivers and flexibilities in response to requests from healthcare providers. Among other updates, Medicare will no longer require an order from a treating physician or other practitioner for coverage of a Medicare beneficiary’s COVID-19 (and related) diagnostic tests. This means pharmacists can administer the tests without a practitioner order (which services can be billed directly by a pharmacist enrolled in Medicare or a laboratory, or by a coordinating provider or practitioner) and make it easier for beneficiaries to be tested at parking lot testing sites operated by pharmacies. Medicare and Medicaid will also cover certain serology (antibody) tests used to determine whether a person may have developed an immune response to COVID-19

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