This past November, CMS announced that starting January 1, 2023, Medicare will pay physicians in all states and other practitioners with prescription authority, such as nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician assistants (PAs) in some states, to perform comprehensive pain management for their patients living with chronic pain. Medicare health insurance covers individuals over the age of 65 and disabled Americans.
CMS has created 2 specialized billing codes just for chronic pain management (Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System codes G3002 and G3003) that these health care practitioners can use to get paid for their time spent caring for patients and coordinating patient care with other health care practitioners, like physical therapists, psychologists, and even complementary practitioners, such as massage therapists and acupuncturists.
Did CMS include patient input in the ruling?
Yes! CMS released a draft version of this idea in July 2022 and posed many questions asking for patient and other stakeholder input. The U.S. Pain Foundation sent an alert this summer explaining the kinds of input they were seeking. Thank you to those who took action! U.S. Pain Foundation submitted a lengthy comment to the docket answering CMS’s questions from the patient perspective. You can read our comment here. We are pleased that CMS really did incorporate our recommendations into the final rule. In fact, they quoted the organization’s comment 12 times in the final rule.