(a) Definition. As used in this section, the term “physician” means a doctor of medicine or osteopathy, as set forth in section 1861(r)(1) of the Act.
(b) Qualifications. For Medicare Part B coverage of his or her services, a nurse practitioner must be a registered professional nurse who is authorized by the State in which the services are furnished to practice as a nurse practitioner in accordance with State law, and must meet one of the following:
(1) Obtained Medicare billing privileges as a nurse practitioner for the first time on or after January 1, 2003, and meets the following requirements:
(i) Be certified as a nurse practitioner by a recognized national certifying body that has established standards for nurse practitioners.
(ii) Possess a master's degree in nursing or a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) doctoral degree.
(2) Obtained Medicare billing privileges as a nurse practitioner for the first time before January 1, 2003, and meets the standards in paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this section.
(3) Obtained Medicare billing privileges as a nurse practitioner for the first time before January 1, 2001.
(c) Services. Medicare Part B covers nurse practitioners' services in all settings in both rural and urban areas, only if the services would be covered if furnished by a physician and the nurse practitioner -
(1) Is legally authorized to perform them in the State in which they are performed;
(2) Is not performing services that are otherwise excluded from coverage because of one of the statutory exclusions; and
(3) Performs them while working in collaboration with a physician.
(i) Collaboration is a process in which a nurse practitioner works with one or more physicians to deliver health care services within the scope of the practitioner's expertise, with medical direction and appropriate supervision as provided for in jointly developed guidelines or other mechanisms as provided by the law of the State in which the services are performed.
(ii) In the absence of State law governing collaboration, collaboration is a process in which a nurse practitioner has a relationship with one or more physicians to deliver health care services. Such collaboration is to be evidenced by nurse practitioners documenting the nurse practitioners' scope of practice and indicating the relationships that they have with physicians to deal with issues outside their scope of practice. Nurse practitioners must document this collaborative process with physicians.
(iii) The collaborating physician does not need to be present with the nurse practitioner when the services are furnished or to make an independent evaluation of each patient who is seen by the nurse practitioner.
(d) Services and supplies incident to a nurse practitioners' services. Medicare Part B covers services and supplies incident to the services of a nurse practitioner if the requirements of § 410.26 are met.
(e) Professional services. Nurse practitioners can be paid for professional services only when the services have been personally performed by them and no facility or other provider charges, or is paid, any amount for the furnishing of the professional services.
(1) Supervision of other nonphysician staff by a nurse practitioner does not constitute personal performance of a professional service by a nurse practitioner.
(2) The services are provided on an assignment-related basis, and a nurse practitioner may not charge a beneficiary for a service not payable under this provision. If a beneficiary has made payment for a service, the nurse practitioner must make the appropriate refund to the beneficiary.
(f) Medical record documentation. For nurse practitioners' services, the nurse practitioner may review and verify (sign and date), rather than re-document, notes in a patient's medical record made by physicians; residents; nurses; medical, physician assistant, and advanced practice registered nurse students; or other members of the medical team, including, as applicable, notes documenting the nurse practitioner's presence and participation in the service.