National Coverage Determination (NCD)

Treatment of Psoriasis


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Tracking Information

Publication Number
Manual Section Number
Manual Section Title
Treatment of Psoriasis
Version Number
Effective Date of this Version
This is a longstanding national coverage determination. The effective date of this version has not been posted.

Description Information

Benefit Category
Incident to a physician's professional Service
Physicians' Services

Please Note: This may not be an exhaustive list of all applicable Medicare benefit categories for this item or service.

Indications and Limitations of Coverage

Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease, for which several conventional methods of treatment have been recognized as covered. These include topical application of steroids or other drugs; ultraviolet light (actinotherapy); and coal tar alone or in combination with ultraviolet B light (Goeckerman treatment).

A newer treatment for psoriasis uses a psoralen derivative drug in combination with ultraviolet A light, known as PUVA. PUVA therapy is covered for treatment of intractable, disabling psoriasis, but only after the psoriasis has not responded to more conventional treatment. The Medicare Administrative Contractor should document this before paying for PUVA therapy.

In addition, reimbursement for PUVA therapy should be limited to amounts paid for other types of photochemotherapy; ordinarily, payment should not be allowed for more than 30 days of treatment, unless improvement is documented.

Additional Information

Other Versions
Title Version Effective Between
Treatment of Psoriasis 1 01/01/1966 - N/A You are here