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December 2016 Texas Medicaid Provider Procedures Manual

Section 5: Fee‑for‑Service Prior Authorizations : 5.1 General Information About Prior Authorization : 5.1.8 Prior Authorization for Nonemergency Ambulance Transport

5.1.8
According to 1 TAC §354.1111, nonemergency transport is defined as ambulance transport provided for a Medicaid client to or from a scheduled medical appointment, to or from a licensed facility for treatment, or to the client’s home after discharge from a hospital when the client has a medical condition such that the use of an ambulance is the only appropriate means of transportation (i.e., alternate means of transportation are medically contraindicated).
Refer to:
The Ambulance Services Handbook (Vol. 2, Provider Handbooks) for more information about ambulance services.
According to Human Resource Code (HRC) §32.024 (t), a Medicaid-enrolled physician, nursing facility, health-care provider, or other responsible party is required to obtain authorization before an ambulance is used to transport a client in circumstances not involving an emergency.
HRC states that a provider of nonemergency ambulance transport is entitled to payment from the nursing facility, health-care provider, or other responsible party that requested the service if payment under the Medical Assistance Program is denied because of lack of prior authorization and the ambulance provider submits a copy of the claim for which payment was denied.
Refer to:
The Medical Transportation Program Handbook (Vol. 2, Provider Handbooks) for more information about the Medical Transportation Program.
TMHP responds to nonemergency transport prior authorization requests within 2 business days of receipt of requests for 60 days or less. Providers should submit all requests for a prior authorization number (PAN) in sufficient time to allow TMHP to issue the PAN before the date of the intended transport.
If the client’s medical condition is not appropriate for transport by ambulance, nonemergency ambulance services are not a benefit. Prior authorization is a condition for reimbursement but is not a guarantee of payment. The client and provider must meet all of the Medicaid requirements, such as client eligibility and claim filing deadlines.
Medicaid providers who participate in one of the Medicaid Managed Care health maintenance organization (HMO) plans must follow the HMO’s prior authorization requirements.
The TMHP Ambulance Unit reviews the prior authorization request to determine whether the client’s medical condition is appropriate for transport by ambulance. Incomplete information may cause the request to be suspended for additional medical information or be denied.
The following information helps TMHP determine the appropriateness of the transport:
An explanation of the client’s physical condition that establishes the medical necessity for transport. The explanation must clearly state the client’s condition requiring transport by ambulance.
Prior authorization is required when an extra attendant is needed for any nonemergency transport.
When a client’s condition changes, such as a need for oxygen or additional monitoring during transport, the prior authorization request must be updated.
Refer to:

Texas Medicaid & Healthcare Partnership
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