• How to Bill for Locum Tenens Physicians


    CMS defines locum tenens physicians as those who have no practice of their own; they can provide care for your patients at your office for no more than 60 days. This rule allows physicians who need time away from their practice to contract with a locum tenens physician to oversee their patients.

    When your practice contracts with a locum tenens physician, the owner physician should keep a record on file of each service provided by the locum tenens physician and have it accessible to Medicare upon request.

    Submit claims using the owner physician's NPI number, but append modifier-Q6 Services furnished by a locum tenens physician under a reciprocal billing arrangement to each exam, test or surgery the locum tenens physician performs.

    When the covering physician does have his or her own practice, append modifier -Q5 Service furnished by a substitute physician under a reciprocal billing arrangement.

    For more information, see CMS’ Section 30.2.11.