CMS to cover behavioral therapy for obesity

Share this article:
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has proposed covering intensive behavioral therapy for obese individuals enrolled in Medicare Part A or Part B.

Obesity is defined as a body mass index (BMI) greater than 30 kg/m2. The therapy would consist of screening for obesity, a dietary assessment and intensive behavioral counseling and therapy to promote weight loss through diet and exercise.

According to the Aug. 31 memo, CMS would cover a face-to-face visit every week for the first month, a face-to-face visit every other week for months two through six, and a face-to-face monthly visit for months seven through 12. In order to qualify, a beneficiary would have to be competent and alert, and meet with a qualified primary care physician or primary care provider, such as a nurse practitioner. While skilled nursing facilities would not be eligible for reimbursement, a less obese older population nonetheless would be good news for providers struggling to keep up with the costs and demands of bariatric patients.

The public can weigh in by clicking on the memo and clicking on the orange “comment” button.

Share this article:

More in News

Profile: AHCA's money player

Profile: AHCA's money player

If there's a prevailing theme around the hours American Health Care Association senior fellow Elise Smith keeps, it's that they are constant.

Residents cheer tractor parade

Residents cheer tractor parade

Many residents of the Oskaloosa Care Center in southern Iowa used to be farmers. They're reminded of their past by the cornfield next to the nursing home — and, once ...

No need for injury

No need for injury

Due to dynamic factors in moving residents, facilities must invest wisely in lifts, slings and batteries to make sure workers stay safe while performing transfers