Is Massage Reimbursable Under The New PIP Law?

Does PIP Pay For Massages?

The Law

Statute for PIP: 627.736(1)(a) 5. Medical benefits do not include massage as defined in s. 480.033 or acupuncture as defined in s. 457.102, regardless of the person, entity, or licensee providing massage or acupuncture, and a licensed massage therapist or licensed acupuncturist may not be reimbursed for medical benefits under this section.

Statute for Massage Practice: 480.033 (3) “Massage” means the manipulation of the soft tissues of the human body with the hand, foot, arm, or elbow, whether or not such manipulation is aided by hydrotherapy, including colonic irrigation, or thermal therapy; any electrical or mechanical device; or the application to the human body of a chemical or herbal preparation.

My Interpretation

No. But I suggest chiropractors perform manual therapy instead.

There are two parts about the new law I’d like to analyze.
The first part states “medical benefits do not include massage as defined by 480.033.” Chapter 480 is the law that regulates massage therapists. It doesn’t regulate chiropractors. If this were the only part of the law then I would argue that chiropractors should be reimbursed for massage.

The second part of the law is a “catch all”. It states “regardless of the person, entity or licensee providing massage.” Because of this part, I think it is pretty clear that the legislators didn’t want to allow reimbursement for massage by any medical provider.

Also keep in mind that Florida Legislators could have mentioned CPT code 97124 (massage) in the law but they didn’t! Instead of just saying “PIP will not reimburse 97124” they went the long route.

Based on the thousands of PIP claims I’ve handled under the “old PIP law” I know that insurance companies are going to deny 97124 every time they see it. I’m suggesting my clients perform manual therapy instead of massage. Avoid the headache!


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