Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Screenings for Depression, Alcohol Misuse Now Covered by Medicare

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on Friday the addition of annual depression and alcohol screenings to Medicare’s existing package of preventive services. Depression screenings are now available in primary care settings that have the staff resources to follow up with appropriate treatment and referrals. And the new alcohol misuse benefit includes four primary-care-based behavioral counseling sessions per year for those beneficiaries screening positive.

APA played a key role in the adoption of these new benefits and commends CMS for the decision to expand its coverage. Read more about the annual screenings and APA’s recommendations for their implementation in Psychiatric News.

(Image: Carme Balcells/Shutterstock.com)


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