CMS Seeks Permanent Changes for Certain Telehealth Services Modified During Public Health Emergency

August 14, 2020
Thomas N. Bulleit
Coronavirus Landing Site


Since the declaration of the public health emergency for the COVID-19 global pandemic (“PHE”), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) has published two Interim Final Rules, as well as certain waivers, that extensively modify coverage of telehealth services in the Medicare program. The Physician Fee Schedule (“PFS”) Proposed Rule for CY 2021, issued August 3, 2020 (the “PFS Proposed Rule”), seeks to make certain of these changes permanent.   Also on August 3, 2020, President Trump issued an Executive Order requiring the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, within 60 days, to review the temporary additional telehealth services offered to Medicare beneficiaries, and propose a regulation to extend these measures, as appropriate, beyond the duration of the PHE. Thus, additional CMS rulemaking may take place in the upcoming months.

Comments on the PFS Proposed Rule are due October 5, 2020. The comment periods for the earlier Interim Final Rules have expired, but no revised final rules have been issued.

We have prepared a table in the format below describing changes implemented by the current rulemaking and related guidance by affected provider and program, and include cites to the pertinent Federal Register pages. 

Affected Providers and Programs

Description of CMS Telehealth Provision

(Temporary for the Public Health Emergency or Proposed to be Permanent)

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact your usual Ropes & Gray advisor.

Click here to read the full Alert.



Thomas N. Bulleit
Thomas N. Bulleit
Retired Partner