In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, Congress and the Trump administration implemented a record number of legislative, regulatory, and sub-regulatory changes to the Medicare program. These alterations allow for unprecedented flexibility to healthcare providers, Medicare Advantage Plans, and Part D plans. Some of the changes waived Medicare participation conditions, allowing patients to be treated in alternative care settings. Other changes allow for telemedicine services to be eligible for Medicare reimbursement to physicians and other healthcare providers.

Significant COVID-19 changes that include telecommunication reimbursement include telephone visits, physician supervision services, urban and rural areas, and new sites (including patient homes). Hospitals can now provide alternative services at locations, including other healthcare facilities, expansion sites (hotels or community facilities), and specific services at patients’ homes. Moreover, licensed providers can provisionally offer services outside of their enrollment state. 

Both the benefits and unintended consequences of these policy actions should be carefully analyzed by policymakers and stakeholders to provide patients access to healthcare, and so providers can offer high-quality care. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, stakeholder input and analyses should inform the regular rulemaking process to guarantee any permanent governing adaptations improve the Medicare program. The effects of these policies should be meticulously studied to determine the most efficient way to prepare for future public health emergencies.

Want to know more about the new regulations or need some assistance navigating through Medicare terminology, plans, policies, etc.? Look no further; Senior Health Medicare is here to help you find your path through the Medicare world. Click here to read more information about regulatory changes. 

Senior Health Medicare is a superior resource for Medicare guidance, information, and ongoing client support. Selecting a Medicare plan is not a flippant decision. It requires annual revisiting and re-evaluating for the client to stay in the most cost-effective coverage. Senior Health Medicare is here to serve as your resource through all the years to come. Contact us today at 888-404-5049 or visit us on the web at

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