Medicare Establishes Payment Level for Treatment of Tremor

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has set the institutional payment for focused ultrasound treatment for essential tremor at approximately $10,000. After two years CMS will reevaluate the payment level based on the actual costs of treatments performed during that interval.

CMS logoFocused ultrasound has the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for many patients suffering with essential tremor. For this potential to be realized, focused ultrasound must be widely adopted as a standard of care, which requires evidence of safety and efficacy and sufficient reimbursement to allow healthcare institutions to acquire the equipment and train physicians to use it. 

Robust evidence of safety and efficacy of focused ultrasound to treat certain patients with essential tremor has been achieved through a clinical trial, the results of which served as the basis for the July 2016 FDA approval for this indication. The study’s final data were published in the New England Journal of Medicine in August 2016.

While the level of reimbursement currently approved by CMS is less than desired by the neurosurgical community, it is hopefully sufficient to allow adequate numbers of patients to be treated during the next two years to generate the cost data that will allow CMS to adjust the level of payment.

Focused ultrasound to treat essential tremor is the first brain disorder to be approved by the FDA and the first to be reimbursed by Medicare. These approvals serve as the predicate to treat other brain indications including tumors, epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, and reversibly opening the blood brain barrier to enable delivery of a range of cutting-edge therapies for a variety of other neurological disorders that are in earlier stages of research and development.

We anticipate Medicare reimbursement for patient treatments will be available after the first of the year. 

0 #9 FUS Foundation 2017-04-20 17:10
Hello John,

There is a site at Weill Cornell in New York. You can learn more about all of Insightec's current sites here:
0 #8 john 2017-03-30 07:51
Ilive in syracuse, are there any locations near here, thanks
-1 #7 FUS Foundation 2017-03-15 11:46
Hi June,

While this ruling is the first step to Medicare reimbursement, there are a number of hurdles left. In the meantime, there are sites treating essential tremor patients as part of a continued access clinical trial, and that list is available here:
+1 #6 june fontana 2017-03-14 22:26
Please let me know of the nearest site to Chicago. I am a medical coder and the tremors have impacted my skills.
0 #5 FUS Foundation 2017-01-13 12:36
Hello David,

Thank you for reaching out. You can learn more about focused ultrasound for essential tremor at the links below.

You can also find treatment centers here:
0 #4 David Huff 2017-01-07 14:27
I am 73 years of age and have had ET for several years. I would like any info on this new treatment. My tremors have gotten worse and I find it hard to eat as food falls off my fork.
0 #3 FUS Foundation 2017-01-06 10:33
Hello Richard,

You can use the link below to find a list of potential treatment sites. However, unfortunately it does not appear that there are any in close proximity to Tulsa.
-1 #2 michael murphy 2017-01-05 18:57
my mother 85 .has et and needs help other than propranolol because of the side effects.
+1 #1 richard trebel 2016-12-29 17:27
Please advise me of the location of Focused Ultrasound
nearest to Tulsa, Ok.
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