CMS Issues Proposed Rule for Community Mental Health Centers in Medicare

by Rebecca Farley on June 24, 2011

On June 17, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued a notice of proposed rulemaking for Conditions of Participation (CoP) for Medicare Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs).

The proposed Conditions of Participation (CoPs) would apply to the 224 Community Mental Health Centers that are recognized by Medicare because they provide partial hospitalization services (Point of Service Codes 53). Under the Medicare program, CMHCs are recognized as Medicare providers only for partial hospitalization services. Most mental health and addiction treatment organizations that bill Medicare are not registered with the program as Community Mental Health Centers, most are actually “Offices” (Point of Service Code 11).

Partial hospitalization offers an alternative to inpatient treatment by focusing on the medical, emotional, social, and therapeutic needs of clients with acute mental illness, using an interdisciplinary approach. The CoPs address health and safety standards and a new a client-centered, outcome-oriented approach.

CMS will accept public comments on the proposed rule until August 16, 2011, and will respond to comments in a final rule to be published in the coming months. To submit comments, visit and search for rule “CMS-3202-P.” The National Council is in the process of reviewing the Proposed Rule and will be sharing draft comments in the near future.


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