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Point/Counterpoint Editorials |

Counterpoint: Should Medicare Allow Respiratory Therapists to Independently Practice and Bill for Educational Activities Related to COPD? NoAllow Respiratory Therapists to Bill for COPD? No

Katherine Courtright, MD; Scott Manaker, MD, PhD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From the Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Division (Drs Courtright and Manaker) and the Department of Medicine (Dr Manaker), University of Pennsylvania.

Correspondence to: Katherine Courtright, MD, Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Division, Gates Bldg, 806 W, 3400 Spruce St, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104; e-mail: katherine.courtright@uphs.upenn.edu


For editorial comment see page 206

Financial/nonfinancial disclosures: The authors have reported to CHEST the following conflicts of interest: From 2010 to 2013, Dr Courtright’s spouse worked for Connolly, LLC, a Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services Recover Audit Contractor. Dr Manaker has received fees as a Grand Rounds speaker, lecturer, consultant, and expert witness on documentation, coding, billing, and reimbursement from hospitals, physicians, departments, practice groups, professional societies, insurers, and various attorneys. In March 2011, he received $5,400 from Aetna Inc for consultation on diagnosis coding. Dr Manaker serves on the Hospital Outpatient Panel, a federal advisory commission to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Dr Manaker also serves on the Board of Directors of ACCP Enterprises, Inc, a wholly owned, for-profit subsidiary of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.


Chest. 2014;145(2):213-216. doi:10.1378/chest.13-2520
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Extract

Multidisciplinary care is a well-established, cost-effective approach to managing many chronic illnesses.1 Perhaps the best example is pulmonary rehabilitation (PR), often administered by respiratory therapists (RTs).2 PR for COPD yields statistically and clinically significant improvement in quality of life (QOL), including patients’ sense of control over their disease.3 Patients’ sense of control is a fundamental concept in chronic disease self-management education (SME) efforts, including PR, and in the 2013 Medicare Respiratory Therapist Access Act, which proposes independent billing specifically of RT-directed SME for COPD.4

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