New Modifier Announced for Audio-Only Telehealth Services

Members & Publications


December 22, 2021

On December 20, 2021, the American Medical Association (AMA) announced a new modifier to indicate real-time telemedicine services provided via audio-only mechanism.  The use of the new modifier will be subject to individual payer policy. The new modifier, below, is effective January 1, 2022. 

Modifier 93 – Synchronous Telemedicine Service Rendered Via Telephone or Other Real-Time Interactive Audio-Only Telecommunications System: Synchronous telemedicine service is defined as a real-time interaction between a physician or other qualified health care professional and a patient who is located away at a distant site from the physician or other qualified health care professional. The totality of the communication of information exchanged between the physician or other qualified health care professional and the patient during the course of the synchronous telemedicine service must be of an amount and nature that is sufficient to meet the key components and/or requirements of the same service when rendered via a face-to-face interaction.

AAPM&R will be monitoring payer decisions regarding whether they will be reimbursing for audio-only services coded with the new modifier.

Legislation Introduced to Alleviate Impact of Conversion Factor Cut for 2021

Nov 09, 2020

Last month, two bills were introduced in the House proposing solutions to the estimated 10.6% Physician Fee Schedule conversion factor cut expected to go into effect January 1, 2021.  The bills offer some relief to the cut, but do not reflect a comprehensive or long-term solution.  AAPM&R has therefore chosen to remain neutral regarding these bills. 

Your Academy continues to advocate for a permanent solution to the conversion factor cut while maintaining the important payment increases to office and outpatient evaluation and management services.