66 FR 55331, Nov. 1, 2001, unless otherwise noted.
For the purposes of this subpart, the following definitions apply:
Chronic renal insufficiency means the stage of renal disease associated with a reduction in renal function not severe enough to require dialysis or transplantation (glomerular filtration rate [GFR] 13-50 ml/min/1.73m2).
Diabetes means diabetes mellitus, a condition of abnormal glucose metabolism diagnosed using the following criteria: A fasting blood sugar greater than or equal to 126 mg/dL on two different occasions; a 2 hour post-glucose challenge greater than or equal to 200 mg/dL on 2 different occasions; or a random glucose test over 200 mg/dL for a person with symptoms of uncontrolled diabetes.
Episode of care means services covered in a 12-month time period when coordinated with initial diabetes self-management training (DSMT) and one calendar year for each year thereafter, starting with the assessment and including all covered interventions based on referral(s) from a physician as specified in § 410.132(c). The time period covered for gestational diabetes extends only until the pregnancy ends.
Medical nutrition therapy services means nutritional diagnostic, therapeutic, and counseling services provided by a registered dietitian or nutrition professional for the purpose of managing diabetes or a renal disease.
Physician means a doctor of medicine or osteopathy legally authorized to practice medicine and surgery by the State in which he or she performs such function or action (including a physician within the meaning of section of 1101(a)(7) of the Act).
Renal disease means chronic renal insufficiency, end-stage renal disease when dialysis is not received, or the medical condition of a beneficiary for 36 months after kidney transplant.
Treating physician means the primary care physician or specialist coordinating care for the beneficiary with diabetes or renal disease.
(a) Conditions for coverage of MNT services. Medicare Part B pays for MNT services provided by a registered dietitian or nutrition professional as defined in § 410.134 when the beneficiary is referred for the service by the treating physician. Except as provided at § 410.78, services covered consist of face-to-face nutritional assessments and interventions in accordance with nationally-accepted dietary or nutritional protocols.
(b) Limitations on coverage of MNT services.
(1) MNT services based on a diagnosis of renal disease as described in this subpart are not covered for beneficiaries receiving maintenance dialysis for which payment is made under section 1881 of the Act.
(2) A beneficiary may only receive the maximum number of hours covered under the DSMT benefit for both DSMT and MNT during the initial DSMT training period unless additional hours are determined to be medically necessary under the national coverage determination process.
(3) In years when the beneficiary is eligible for MNT and follow-up DSMT, the beneficiary may only receive the maximum number of hours covered under MNT unless additional hours are determined to be medically necessary under the national coverage determination process.
(4) If a beneficiary has both diabetes and renal disease, the beneficiary may only receive the maximum number of hours covered under the renal MNT benefit in one episode of care unless he or she is receiving initial DSMT services, in which case the beneficiary would receive whichever is greater.
(5) An exception to the maximum number of hours in (b)(2), (3), and (4) of this section may be made when the treating physician determines that there is a change of diagnosis, medical condition, or treatment regimen related to diabetes or renal disease that requires a change in MNT during an episode of care.
(c) Referrals. Referral may only be made by the treating physician when the beneficiary has been diagnosed with diabetes or renal disease as defined in this subpart with documentation maintained by the referring physician in the beneficiary's medical record. Referrals must be made for each episode of care and any additional assessments or interventions required by a change of diagnosis, medical condition, or treatment regimen during an episode of care.
For Medicare Part B coverage of MNT, only a registered dietitian or nutrition professional may provide the services. “Registered dietitian or nutrition professional” means an individual who, on or after December 22, 2000:
(a) Holds a bachelor's or higher degree granted by a regionally accredited college or university in the United States (or an equivalent foreign degree) with completion of the academic requirements of a program in nutrition or dietetics accredited by an appropriate national accreditation organization recognized for this purpose.
(b) Has completed at least 900 hours of supervised dietetics practice under the supervision of a registered dietitian or nutrition professional.
(c) Is licensed or certified as a dietitian or nutrition professional by the State in which the services are performed. In a State that does not provide for licensure or certification, the individual will be deemed to have met this requirement if he or she is recognized as a “registered dietitian” by the Commission on Dietetic Registration or its successor organization, or meets the requirements of paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section.
(i) A dietitian or nutritionist licensed or certified in a State as of December 21, 2000 is not required to meet the requirements of (a) and (b) of this section.
(ii) A “registered dietitian” in good standing, as recognized by the Commission of Dietetic Registration or its successor organization, is deemed to have met the requirements of (a) and (b) of this section.