CMS Proposes to Both Ease and Tighten Physician Supervision Requirements for Hospital Outpatient Services


On July 1, 2009, CMS placed on display its proposed changes to its Hospital

Outpatient Prospective Payment System rule. Included among those changes

are proposals to alter CMS's physician supervision requirements pertaining to

hospital outpatient services, requirements that have been in flux since last

year. As readers will recall, in CMS's calendar year (CY) 2009 proposed and

final rules, the agency provided what it termed a restatement and clarification

of the requirements for physician supervision of hospital diagnostic and

therapeutic services. (See "Be Careful What You Assume" and "Clarity is

Hard to Find.") In those rules, CMS appeared to reverse long-standing policy

by requiring physician supervision in locations and instances when that

supervision had previously been assumed to be in place. In the 2010 proposed

rule, however, CMS has proposed a somewhat different approach. Ober|Kaler's Thomas Coons explains.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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