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Time Tracking

In May 2000, Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) issued a transmittal notifying the provider community about the implementation of what is commonly known as the "eight-minute rule." The rule governs the billing of a service unit for timed codes, with each unit being defined as 15 minutes.

The "eight-minute rule" means that the therapist must deliver at least 8 minutes of care before a 15-minute unit of care can be billed. Therefore, one unit of care is billed when the therapist delivers between 8 and 23 minutes of care (8 minutes qualifies for the first unit of care, and the therapist must deliver more than 23 minutes of care to qualify for billing a second unit of care).

Until recently, only Medicare used the "eight-minute rule" as a standard for tracking units of care. However, some clinics are now adopting this rule for all patient types, so they are incorporating the tracking of care delivery times into their documentation in anticipation of Medicaid and commercial payers possibly adopting this time-tracking policy in the future. As a result, it is important that therapists are aware of these rules when they document their care delivery.

To learn more about how Chart Links can help your facility with Time Tracking or CCI Edits, contact us.