(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.