Clinical UM Guideline
|Guideline #:||CG-REHAB-04||Current Effective Date:||04/16/2013|
|Status:||Reviewed||Last Review Date:||02/14/2013|
Physical therapy (PT) is a form of rehabilitation with an established theoretical and scientific base and widespread clinical applications in the restoration, maintenance, and promotion of optimal physical function.
Physical therapists diagnose and manage movement dysfunction and enhance physical and functional abilities. Physical therapy services restore, maintain, and promote not only optimal physical functioning but also optimal wellness and fitness and optimal quality of life as it relates to movement and health. These services performed in the outpatient, office or home setting prevent the onset, symptoms, and progression of impairments, functional limitations, and disabilities that may result from diseases, disorders, conditions, or injuries.
The terms "physical therapy" and "physiotherapy" are synonymous.
Note: Many benefit plans include a maximum allowable physical therapy benefit, either in duration of treatment or in number of visits. When the maximum allowable benefit is exhausted, coverage will no longer be provided even if the medical necessity criteria described below are met.
Note:Please see the following related documents for additional information:
Physical therapy (PT) services are considered medically necessary when the following criteria are met:
A comprehensive evaluation is essential to determine if PT services are medically necessary, gather baseline data, establish a treatment plan, and develop goals based on the data. The initial evaluation is usually completed in a single session. An evaluation is needed before implementing any PT treatment. Evaluation begins with the administration of appropriate and relevant assessments using standardized assessments and tools. The evaluation must include:
A physical therapy session can vary from fifteen minutes to four hours per day; however, treatment sessions lasting more than one hour per day are rare in outpatient settings. Treatment sessions for more than one hour per day may be medically appropriate for inpatient acute settings, day treatment programs, and select outpatient situations, but must be supported in the treatment plan and based on an individual's medical condition. A physical therapy session may include:
Documentation of treatment sessions must include:
In order to reflect that continued PT services are medically necessary, intermittent progress reports must demonstrate that the individual is making functional progress. Progress reports should include at a minimum:
A reevaluation is indicated when there are new clinical findings, a rapid change in the individual's status, or failure to respond to physical therapy interventions. There are several routine reassessments that are not considered reevaluations. These include ongoing reassessments that are part of each skilled treatment session, progress reports, and discharge summaries.
Reevaluation is a more comprehensive assessment that includes all the components of the initial evaluation, such as:
Providers of PT Services
The services are delivered by a qualified provider of physical therapy services acting within the scope of their license as regulated by the Federal and State governments. In addition to licensure, physical therapists must have passed the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE). Physical therapy assistants may provide services under the direction and supervision of a physical therapist. Benefits for services provided by these practitioners are dependent upon the member's contract language.
Aides, athletic trainers, exercise physiologists, life skills trainers, and rehabilitation technicians do not meet the definition of a qualified practitioner regardless of the level of supervision. Aides and other nonqualified personnel as listed above are limited to non-skilled services such as preparing the individual, treatment area, equipment, or supplies; assisting a qualified therapist or assistant; and transporting individuals. They may not provide any direct treatments, modalities, or procedures.
Not Medically Necessary:
Physical therapy (PT) services are considered not medically necessary if any of the following is determined:
Duplicate therapy is considered not medically necessary. When individuals receive physical, occupational, or speech therapy, the therapists should provide different treatments that reflect each therapy discipline's unique perspective on the individual's impairments and functional deficits and not duplicate the same treatment. They must also have separate evaluations, treatment plans, and goals.
Maintenance programs are considered not medically necessary. A maintenance program consists of treatments or activities that preserve the individual's present level range, strength, coordination, balance, pain, activity, function, etc. and prevent regression of the same parameters. Maintenance begins when the therapeutic goals of a treatment plan have been achieved, or when no additional functional progress is apparent or expected to occur. In certain circumstances, the specialized knowledge and judgment of a qualified therapist maybe required to establish a maintenance program, however, the repetitive PT services to maintain a level would be considered not medically necessary.
The following codes for treatments and procedures applicable to this document are included below for informational purposes. A draft of future ICD-10 Coding (effective 10/01/2014) related to this document, as it might look today, is included below for your reference. Inclusion or exclusion of a procedure, diagnosis or device code(s) does not constitute or imply member coverage or provider reimbursement policy. Please refer to the member's contract benefits in effect at the time of service to determine coverage or non-coverage of these services as it applies to an individual member.
|90901||Biofeedback training by any modality [when done for medically necessary indications]|
|94667||Manipulation chest wall, such as cupping, percussing, and vibration to facilitate lung function, initial demonstration and/or evaluation|
|94668||Manipulation chest wall, such as cupping, percussing, and vibration to facilitate lung function; subsequent|
|97001||Physical therapy evaluation|
|97002||Physical therapy re-evaluation|
|97010-97028||Application of a modality to one or more areas (supervised) [includes codes 97010, 97012, 97014, 97016, 97018, 97022, 97024, 97026, 97028]|
|97032-97036||Application of a modality to one or more areas (constant attendance) [includes codes 97032, 97033, 97034, 97035, 97036]|
|97039||Unlisted modality [when not specified as a procedure that is considered investigational and not medically necessary]|
|97110-97139||Therapeutic procedure, one or more areas [includes codes 97110, 97112, 97113, 97116, 97124, 97139]|
|97140||Manual therapy techniques (eg, mobilization/manipulation, manual lymphatic drainage, manual traction), one or more regions, each 15 minutes|
|97150||Therapeutic procedure(s), group (2 or more individuals)|
|97530||Therapeutic activities, direct (one-on-one) patient contact (use of dynamic activities to improve functional performance), each 15 minutes|
|97532||Development of cognitive skills to improve attention, memory, problem solving (includes compensatory training), direct (one-on-one) patient contact, each 15 minutes|
|97535||Self care/home management training (eg, activities of daily living (ADL) and compensatory training, meal preparation, safety procedures, and instructions in use of assistive technology devices/adaptive equipment) direct one-on-one contact, each 15 minutes|
|97537||Community/work reintegration training (eg, shopping, transportation, money management, avocational activities and/or work environment/modification analysis, work task analysis, use of assistive technology device/adaptive equipment), direct one-on-one contact, each 15 minutes|
|97542||Wheelchair management (eg, assessment, fitting, training), each 15 minutes|
|97597-97598||Debridement (eg, high pressure waterjet with/without suction, sharp selective debridement with scissors, scalpel and forceps), open wound, (eg, fibrin, devitalized epidermis and/or dermis, exudates, debris, biofilm), including topical application(s), wound assessment, use of a whirlpool, when performed and instruction(s) for ongoing care, per session|
|97602||Removal of devitalized tissue from wound(s), non-selective debridement, without anesthesia (eg, wet-to-moist dressings, enzymatic, abrasion), including topical application(s), wound assessment, and instruction(s) for ongoing care, per session|
|97750||Physical performance test or measurement (eg, musculoskeletal, functional capacity), with written report, each 15 minutes|
|97755||Assistive technology assessment (eg, to restore, augment or compensate for existing function, optimize functional tasks and/or maximize environmental accessibility), direct one-on-one contact, with written report, each 15 minutes|
|97760||Orthotic(s) management and training (including assessment and fitting when not otherwise reported), upper extremity(s), lower extremity(s) and/or trunk, each 15 minutes|
|97761||Prosthetic training, upper and/or lower extremity(s), each 15 minutes|
|97762||Checkout for orthotic/prosthetic use, established patient, each 15 minutes|
|97799||Unlisted physical medicine/rehabilitation service or procedure [when not specified as a procedure that is considered investigational and not medically necessary]|
|G0151||Services performed by a qualified physical therapist in the home health or hospice setting, each 15 minutes|
|G0157||Services performed by a qualified physical therapist assistant in the home health or hospice setting, each 15 minutes|
|G0159||Services performed by a qualified physical therapist, in the home health setting, in the establishment or delivery of a safe and effective physical therapy maintenance program, each 15 minutes|
|G0281||Electrical stimulation (unattended), to one or more areas, for chronic stage III and stage IV pressure ulcers, arterial ulcers, diabetic ulcers, and venous stasis ulcers not demonstrating measurable signs of healing after 30 days of conventional care, as part of a therapy plan of care|
|G0283||Electrical stimulation (unattended, to one or more areas for indications other then wound care, as part of a therapy plan of care|
|G0329||Electromagnetic therapy, to one or more areas for chronic stage III and stage IV pressure ulcers, arterial ulcers, and diabetic ulcers and venous stasis ulcers not demonstrating measurable signs of healing after 30 days of conventional care as part of a therapy plan of care|
|S8950||Complex lymphedema therapy|
|S8990||Physical or manipulative therapy performed for maintenance rather than restoration|
|S9117||Back school, per visit|
|S9131||Physical therapy, in the home, per diem|
|ICD-10 Diagnosis||ICD-10-CM draft codes; effective 10/01/2014|
Government Agency, Medical Society, and Other Authoritative Publications:
PT (Physical Therapy)
|Reviewed||02/14/2013||Medical Policy & Technology Assessment Committee (MPTAC) review. Updated Websites.|
|Reviewed||08/09/2012||MPTAC review. Updated websites and references.|
|01/01/2012||Updated Coding section to add code S8990; removed revenue codes 0420-0429.|
|Reviewed||08/18/2011||MPTAC review. Updated websites and references.|
|01/01/2011||Updated Coding section with 01/01/2011 CPT and HCPCS changes.|
|Revised||08/19/2010||MPTAC review. Clarified language in Providers of Physical Therapy (PT) Services section stating that physical therapists are required to have licensure and have passed the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) and that other qualified providers of PT are required to act within the scope of their licenses. Websites and references updated.|
|01/01/2010||Updated Coding section with 01/01/2010 HCPCS changes.|
|Reviewed||08/27/2009||MPTAC review. Remove Place of Service/Duration section. References and coding updated.|
|Reviewed||08/28/2008||MPTAC review. References updated.|
|Reviewed||08/23/2007||MPTAC review. References and Coding section updated.|
|Revised||09/14/2006||MPTAC review. Minor revision to Not Medically Necessary statement. References updated.|
|Revised||12/01/2005||MPTAC review. Revision based on Pre-merger Anthem and Pre-merger WellPoint Harmonization.|
Last Review Date
|RA-008 (Midwest Medical Review & UM criteria)||Physical Therapy / Occupational Therapy For NASCO, Prestandardized Medicare Supplement Plans, Group Blue Retiree Products, And FEP|
|WellPoint Health Networks, Inc.|