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Medicare Question


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Back in 2001 Medicare issued a memorandum stating that treatment of dementia definitely qualified for Medicare payments, including "pharmacologic, physical, occupational, speech-language and other therapies."


Can you get these payments in your activities programs if they include activities that are known to improve cognitive abilities?

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Medicare does not reimburse for any services provided by a Recreational Therapist at this time. The treatments you mentioned are often covered by Medicare when provided by a Speech Therapist/Occupational Therapist. Of course these treatments would typically not be enough to cover a resident under Medicare Part A. This is of course my knowledge base, someone else on this site may have different/additional knowledge.

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You are correct. Rec. Therapy is not re-imbursed at this time. My MDS coordinator has me fill in 0,0 on section "T" of the MDS when it asks the minutes spent in Rec. Therapy. Also, in our facility, I am not a "therapy based" department.


Stacie O


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You are correct Rec Therapy is not reimbursable at this time BUT every conference that I have gone to I have been told that every CTRS should get their MD to write the order for Rec Therapy, document your minutes, report them on the MDS section T. If every CTRS did this "the powers to be" would see that there is a need for TR and eventually this would become reimbursable. It goes back to the "if it is not documented, it didn't happen". If we don't show the need, we will never get reimbursed for our services in LTC. I am still working with my MDS coordinator and MD and I am almost there in working out the details to get this done in my facility! I may not get reimbursed but I will show the need for it!

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