IMS – Incidental Medical Services

Incidental Medical Services, often abbreviated IMS, was implemented in January of 2016. This license allows facilities to treat patients with medical related services like drug and alcohol treatment and bill insurance companies for the services rendered instead of the patient being solely responsible. Nevertheless, this license does not give the facility or center permission to give regular medical services.

The following services must be provided after receiving approval from DHCS:

  • Obtaining medical histories
  • Monitoring health status
  • Testing associated with detoxification from alcohol or drugs
  • Providing alcoholism or drug abuse recovery or treatment services
  • Overseeing patient self-administered medications
  • Treating substance abuse disorders, including detoxification.

The process to obtain these licenses can take anywhere from 3-6 months to complete. It is important to begin the process as soon as possible, not only for licensing purposes but also for billing insurance companies to get your facility paid correctly.

IMS is an optional service meaning that residential treatment centers are not obligated to have this license. However, if a residential treatment facility provides IMS services without DCHS approval, the facility is cited for suspension or revocation. All 6 components of IMS do not have to delivered at a facility. For instance, if a facility does not provide a patient detoxification, the facility has to outline how that service will be provided to the patient. And all services must be rendered by an HCP or a Health Care Practitioner within the scope of their license.

Inner Circle Billing has extensive knowledge in this area to provide our facilities with accurate and appropriate information to guide and help our partners thrive financially.

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