Medicare and Dysphagia Services Speech-language pathologists long involved in dysphagia services and Medicare coverage remember the first related issue that gained the attention of the Association. The Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA, now the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services [CMS]) ruled in the 1980s that there had to be a concomitant communication ... Article
Article  |   December 01, 2002
Medicare and Dysphagia Services
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Steven C. White
    Health Care Economics and Advocacy Team, ASHA
  • Mark L. Kander
    Health Care Economics and Advocacy Team, ASHA
Article Information
Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Practice Management / Articles
Article   |   December 01, 2002
Medicare and Dysphagia Services
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia), December 2002, Vol. 11, 15-17. doi:10.1044/sasd11.4.15
SIG 13 Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia), December 2002, Vol. 11, 15-17. doi:10.1044/sasd11.4.15
Speech-language pathologists long involved in dysphagia services and Medicare coverage remember the first related issue that gained the attention of the Association. The Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA, now the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services [CMS]) ruled in the 1980s that there had to be a concomitant communication disorder in order for a speech-language pathologist to provide Medicare covered service to a patient with dysphagia. The rule was eliminated only after a long advocacy campaign by ASHA. HCFA had referred the issue to the Office of Health Technology Assessment (OHTA) that, in turn, delayed its report for over a year. It took a change in OHTA administrative leadership to allow the report to be completed. The author of OHTA report subsequently found no reason to restrict Medicare patients with dysphagia from services rendered by speech-language pathologists. Consequently, HCFA reversed its Medicare policy decision.
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