CMS Posts Decision of Non-coverage on Thermal Intradiscal Pain Therapy

PainSuite_rRecently the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) posted a non-coverage determination for IDET (Intradiscal Electrothermal Therapy), a non-surgical alternative treatment for discogenic low back pain.   While a CPT code had been established, reimbursement had not.  Ultimately the agency concluded that “there is insufficient evidence to conclude that thermal intradiscal procedures (TIPs) will improve health outcomes in the Medicare population with low back pain.”  

Obtaining reimbursement codes and valuation for pain treatment is a continuing focus for AAPM on behalf of its members.  As such, to help CMS better understand TIPs, including IDET, and the value of appropriate pain care to patients, AAPM participated in a joint response to CMS with AAPMR, ASA, ASIPP, ISIS, NASS and PASSOR. CMS will post its response to the letter and meeting with a final decision on reimbursement forthcoming.

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