DWC's emergency Official Medical Fee Schedule (OMFS) regulations, implementing the requirements of Senate Bill 228, are now in effect. The regulations and instructions can be found on this page at the DIR web site: http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/dwcpropregs/OMFSEmerRegs.htm.
The new schedule will apply to all physician services; hospital services for admitted patients; outpatient hospital services, including ambulatory surgery centers; pharmaceuticals; durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, supplies; pathology and laboratory services; and ambulance services provided after January 1, 2004.
The old OMFS still applies to services covered by it that were provided prior to January 1, 2004.
The emergency regulations were approved by the state Office of Administrative Law on January 2, 2004 and filed with the Secretary of State.
Formal rulemaking on permanent OMFS regulations will begin shortly. DWC will have 120 days from the effective date of the emergency regulations to conduct a regular rulemaking proceeding and submit a completed rulemaking file for permanent regulations to OAL. This will include a 45-day comment period and public hearing, consideration of public comments, and one or more modified proposals with 15-day comment periods.
The emergency regulations will continue in effect while OAL reviews the final rulemaking action. Once that rulemaking process is complete, the permanent regulations will replace the emergency regulations.