LEEDer Group Inc.
8508 North West 66th St.
Miami, Florida 33166 USA

Phone Toll-free: 866.814.0192 or 305.436.5030
Fax Toll-free: 866.818.0373 or 305.436.0086
E-mail Address: orders {at] LEEDerGroup [dot] com

Contracture Management Related

Infrared Therapy Devices

Infrared Therapy Devices = non—covered for treatment by Medicare when used for the treatment of diabetic and/or non-diabetic peripheral sensory neuropathy, wounds, and/or ulcers of the skin and/or subcutaneous tissues.

Medicare has clearly ruled against these devices; nevertheless, the “facts” supporting the efficacy of these devices suggests they may work. As with many “cures”, the placebo effect may be responsible.

  • Provider Types Affected
    Physicians, suppliers, and providers who submit claims for the use of infrared therapy devices for treatment of diabetic and/or non-diabetic peripheral sensory neuropathy, wounds and/or ulcers of the skin and/or subcutaneous tissues in Medicare patients.
  • Impact on Providers
    This article is based on Change Request (CR) 5421. Effective for services performed on or after October 24, 2006, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has made a National Coverage Determination (NCD) stating the use of infrared and/or near-infrared light and/or heat, including monochromatic infrared energy (MIRE), is non-covered for the treatment, including symptoms such as pain arising from these conditions, of diabetic and/or non-diabetic peripheral sensory neuropathy, wounds and/or ulcers of the skin and/or subcutaneous tissues in Medicare patients.
  • Background
    The use of infrared therapy devices has been proposed for a variety of disorders, including treatment of diabetic neuropathy, other peripheral neuropathy, skin ulcers and wounds, and similar related conditions, including symptoms such as pain arising from these conditions. A wide variety of devices are currently available. Previously there was no NCD concerning the use of infrared therapy devices, leaving the decision to cover or not cover up to local Medicare contractors.
The following requirements are in effect as of October 24, 2006

Effective for services performed on or after October 24, 2006, infrared therapy devices, HCPCS codes E0221 (infrared heating pad system) and A4639 (infrared heating pad replacement) are non-covered as DME or PT/OT services when used for the treatment of diabetic and/or non-diabetic peripheral sensory neuropathy, wounds, and/or ulcers of the skin and/or subcutaneous tissues.

  • Claims will be denied with CPT 97026 (infrared therapy incident to or as a PT/OT benefit) and HCPCS E0221 or A4639, if they are accompanied by the following ICD-9 codes: o 250.60-250.63, o 354.4, 354.5, 354.9, o 355.1-355.4, o 355.6-355.9 o 356.0, 356.2-356.4, 356.8-356.9, o 357.0-357.7, o 674.10, 674.12, 674.14, 674.20, 674.22, 674.24, o 707.00-707.07, 707.09-707.15, 707.19, o 870.0-879.9, o 880.00-887.79, o 890.0-897.7, or o 998.31-998.32.
  • Note that denial of infrared therapy claims for the indications listed above applies to all settings, and affects Types of bills (TOBs) 12X, 13X, 22X, 23X, 34X, 74X, 75X and 85X.

  • If you submit a claim for one of the non-covered services, your patient will receive the Medicare Summary Notice (MSN) message stating “This service was not covered by Medicare at the time you received it”. The Spanish translation is: “Este servicio no estaba cubierto por Medicare cuando usted lo recibió.”
  • If you submit a claim for one of the non-covered services you will receive a remittance advice notice that reads: Claim Adjustment Reason Code 50, “These are non-covered services because this is not deemed a ‘medical necessity’ by the payer.”
  • Physicians, physical therapists, occupational therapists, outpatient rehabilitation facilities (ORFs), comprehensive outpatient rehabilitation facilities (CORFs), home health agencies (HHAs), and hospital outpatient departments should note that you are liable if the service is performed, unless the beneficiary signs an Advanced Beneficiary Notice (ABN).
  • DME suppliers and HHA be aware that you are liable for the devices when they are supplied, unless the beneficiary signs an ABN.