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DOD/DODOASHA RIN: 0720-AB71 Publication ID: Fall 2020 
Title: TRICARE: Prescribing of Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech Therapy by Other Allied Health Professionals Acting Within the Scope of Their License  
Abstract:

This rule will finalize changes to permit coverage of services prescribed by TRICARE-authorized individual allied health professionals for physical therapy (PT), occupational therapy (OT), and speech therapy (ST). The current language of title 32 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), 199.4(c)(3)(x) states that PT, OT, and ST may be cost-shared when services are prescribed and monitored by a physician, certified physician assistant, or certified nurse practitioner. In addition, 32 CFR 199.6(c)(3)(iii)(K)(2) currently states that the services of other individual paramedical providers, such as licensed registered PT, OT, and ST, can be considered for benefits on a fee-for-service basis only if the beneficiary is referred by a physician, certified physician assistant, or certified nurse practitioner and a physician, certified physician assistant, or certified nurse practitioner provides continuing and ongoing oversight and supervision of the program or episode of treatment provided by these individual paramedical providers. As a result, otherwise authorized PT, OT, and ST services for TRICARE beneficiaries are not covered benefits when other Allied Health Professionals, such as Doctors of Podiatry, even when acting within their scope of license, prescribe the services.  

State governments generally regulate the licensure and practice of health care professionals, and DoD limits TRICARE benefits coverage to services and supplies furnished by otherwise authorized TRICARE individual professional providers performing within the scope of their State licenses or certifications. State scope of practice laws vary with regard to the range of services, and some include the authority to prescribe PT, OT, and ST. After assessing the information available, DoD has determined that it is unnecessarily restrictive not to cover otherwise authorized PT, OT, and ST services for TRICARE beneficiaries merely because the services are ordered by a non-physician. Therefore, the regulation is being amended to allow TRICARE coverage of PT, OT, and ST services when ordered by other Allied Health Professionals who are TRICARE authorized providers and acting within the scope of their State license or certificate.

 
Agency: Department of Defense(DOD)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
EO 13771 Designation: Not subject to, not significant 
CFR Citation: 32 CFR 199   
Legal Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301    10 U.S.C. ch. 55   
Legal Deadline:  None
Timetable:
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  04/08/2019  84 FR 13855   
NPRM Comment Period End  06/07/2019 
Final Action  11/00/2020 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: No  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: No 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Amber Butterfield
Department of Defense
Office of Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs
16401 E. Centretech Parkway,
Aurora, CO 80011-9066
Phone:303 676-3565
Email: amber.l.butterfield.civ@mail.mil