COVID-19: Interim Guidance

During this time of heightened awareness of the novel Coronavirus, COVID-19, and its classification by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a global pandemic, we want to keep you up to date on how Cigna Behavioral Health is working to help support you and your patients with Cigna coverage.

Many behavioral providers have contacted us about delivering telehealth sessions. While we have been reimbursing for telehealth since 2017, we have made some temporary revisions to telehealth requirements to support continuity of care during this unique situation. The following changes are effective through at least December 31, 2020, unless otherwise noted.


Please note: We are reviewing all new regulations as quickly as possible and will continue to revise the guidance below, as necessary.


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Interim billing guidelines for Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Individual providers and outpatient clinics

If you are an individual provider or an outpatient clinic, you may use telehealth for outpatient therapy, applied behavior analysis (ABA),* medication management, and Employee Assistance Program (EAP) services. Include the following information on your claim form:

  • Appropriate Current Procedural Terminology® (CPT®) code in Field 24-D for the service(s) provided
  • Modifier 95** in Field 24-D to specify telehealth (see sample claim below)
  • Place of Service (POS) 02 in Field 24-B (see sample claim form below)

  • cpt image

    For illustrative purposes only.


Facilities

During this interim period, facilities can render some or all of their services via telehealth (i.e., intensive outpatient program [IOP], partial hospitalization program [PHP]), if appropriate. Providers may offer telephonic sessions to patients who do not have access to technology to participate in telehealth sessions, as appropriate and in accordance with current legislative guidance. Please note: Telephonic sessions are not typically covered in accordance with our Medical Necessity Criteria, however, we are making an exception during this interim period.

  • If a facility normally bills services on a UB04 claim form, they must include the following on their claim:
    • Appropriate Revenue Code for the service rendered
    • Appropriate CPT® or Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) code for the service rendered
    • Modifier 95**
  • If routine outpatient services are normally billed on a CMS1500 claim form, the following must be included:
    • Modifier 95** in Field 24-D to specify telehealth (see sample claim above)
    • 02 in Place of Service in Field 24-B (see sample claim above)
  • To provide telehealth services during this interim period, facilities do not need to submit an attestation, nor do they need to change their contracts.
  • Prior to rendering services, please call the number on back of the patient’s Cigna ID card to verify eligibility and authorization requirements. At this time there are no procedural changes.
  • A facility does not need to contact us if telehealth services are being provided to a patient with Cigna coverage who already has an authorization in place. Current authorizations cover telehealth sessions. If a facility has a clinic contract, attestations are not required during this interim period.

Please note: Providers can also use HCPCS code G2012 for a 5-10 minute phone conversation, and Cigna will waive cost-share for the customer. This will allow for quick telephonic consultations, outside the context of evaluation and management (E&M) services, and will offer appropriate reimbursement for this amount of time. Cigna will cover code G2012 through December 31, 2020. Cost-share for this code will be waived for all services (including non-COVID-19 related services) through October 31, 2020.

Effective for dates of service through December 31, 2020, Cigna will allow eConsults when billed with CPT codes 99446-99452 for all conditions. Cigna’s claim systems are able to accurately process claims with these codes as of May 1, 2020. In addition to the applicable CPT code, providers will need to bill with an appropriate ICD-10 code and POS 02 for virtual services. Cost-share will be waived for both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 eConsults through December 31, 2020.


Please note: Cigna does not offer additional reimbursement for PPE-related costs because office visit (E&M) codes include overhead expenses, such as necessary personal protective equipment (PPE). Separate codes providers may use to bill for supplies are generally considered incidental to the overall primary service and are not reimbursed separately. Contracted providers can’t balance bill customers for non-reimbursable codes.


* One Medical Necessity Criteria for the level of care being delivered must continue to be met.
** The "GT" modifier has been retired by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), but it still acceptable on claim forms.


Employee Assistance Program (EAP) session enhancement

Accelerated credentialing

Additional resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center

Resources to support
your mental health

Live-guided relaxation by telephone

  • Available for all providers at no cost
  • Every Tuesday at 5:00pm ET
  • Call 866.205.5379, enter passcode 113 29 178, and then press #

Wellness podcasts


Resource flyers


Additional Resources


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