An occupational therapy assistant will need to get an associate degree, which can typically be completed in about two years. You have an opportunity to register your own concerns on this issue through the APTA Regulatory Action Webpage or directly through the Federal Register and should do so if you are concerned. This is a proposed rule, it is subject to change. Likewise if the PT is seeing a patient for the initial evaluation and the PTA gathers some of the evaluation data, like ROM or administers a Berg Balance Scale then the total PTA time is to be considered in the same way as above. To join the profession, you must have an associate degree from an accredited OTA program as well as pass the NBCOT® Exam for certification. Occupational Therapy Assistant Modifier Required in 2020 The Balanced Budget Act of 2018 called for a payment adjustment when a patient is seen by a therapy assistant rather than a therapist. It’s due to this exceptional growth — along with job flexibility, high job satisfaction, and only moderate work stress levels — that U.S. News & World Report ranked OTA the #1 healthcare support role in both 2016 and 2017. Subsequently, in the 2019 final rule CMS clarified, noting that any care that exceeded 10% of the total time of care fit the “in part” definition and would be subject to the reduced billing. You must also become very familiar with these rules so you are ready for implementation in January. Keep in mind that modifiers are applied on a per code, basis, and should be included in the claim when billed. It does not apply to Critical Access Hospitals. You guys rock and are always quick to respond! What are the assistant modifiers for PTAs and OTAs? CMS says anything equal to or greater than 11% requires application of the modifier. As of October 2020, OTA, PTA, and SLPA will no longer be able to bill for Part A or B patients in SNF. This change will impact the modifiers you use and ultimately the reimbursement that you receive for services provided by PTAs/OTAs. In summary, in 2020, all Medicare Part B providers must report with a modifier (yet to be determined) indicating whether an OT or an OTA provided services. CMS is soliciting comments on whether these new requirements (particularly the documentation requirements) will create a significant administrative burden. APTA Proposed Fee Schedule News (July 30, 2019). According to posted information, APTA appears to take issue with various aspects of the proposed rule and will be working with CMS to address concerns. Soon you could be helping people to achieve their best possible future and be paid well to do it. Meanwhile, the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) has been gathering feedback in a … Therapeutic services include all timed and untimed coded procedures and modalities including initial evaluations and re-evaluations. The 2020 CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) proposed rule has been released. St. Catherine University developed the NBCOT Prep Coaching Program that helps prepare you to sit for the exam after graduation. If this rule becomes final, you would be required to begin applying these modifiers where applicable on January 1, 2020. Looking for the ideal Future Occupational Therapy Assistant Gifts? While occupational therapy assistants would only make an average of $56,135 in Alaska, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. Thirdly, they state the modifier codes will need to be applied when any portion of concurrently provided care that exceeds the 10% time requirement. Secondly, they need to be applied for any care provided solely by the PTA or OTA. If the PTA/OTA care was 7 minutes or more then the CQ/CO modifiers are added to those line items. 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