Identify your patients who qualify for Medicare under the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). You will no longer be able to distinguish RRB patients by the number on the new Medicare card. You will be able to identify them by the RRB logo on their card, and we will return a message on the eligibility transaction response for a RRB patient. The message will say, “Railroad Retirement Medicare Beneficiary” in 271 Loop 2110C, Segment MSG. If you use the number only to identify your RRB patients beginning in April 2018, you must identify them differently to send Medicare claims to the RRB Specialty Medicare Administrative Contractor, Palmetto GBA at https://www.palmettogba.com/palmetto/providers.nsf/DocsCatHome/Railroad%20Medicare .
Update your practice management system’s patient numbers to automatically accept the new MBI from remittance advice (835) transactions. Beginning in October 2018, through December 2019, CMS will return your patient’s MBI on every electronic remittance advice for claims you submit with a valid and active HICN. It will be in the same place you currently get the “changed HICN”: 835 Loop 2100, Segment NM1 (Corrected Patient/Insured Name), Field NM109 (Identification Code).
If you use vendors to bill Medicare, contact them if they haven’t already shared their new Medicare card system changes with you; they can also tell you how they will pass the new Medicare number to you. The New Medicare Card Provider webpage at https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/New-Medicare-Card/index.html will provide the latest information.
JCAHO and CMS have issued a new ruling that texting of medical orders from a personal mobile device (such as a smartphone) is no longer permitted, whether or not the texting service claims to be secure. The preferred method is to enter orders directly into the Electronic Health Record. Written order are still permitted, as are verbal orders when neither EHR nor written orders are feasible.
This is the headline article in the June 2017 issue of Network 16 News. This issue also contains:
An article on “Are you State Survey Ready?” that provides advice on avoiding Condition Level citations.
A note about possible confusion between HBsAg and HBeAg that can cause a facility to miss a Hepatitis B infection.
CMS has announced several new resources to help facilities prepare for the conversion from Health Insurance Claim Numbers (HICN) to Medicare Beneficiary Identifiers (MBI), in order to remove Social Security Numbers from Medicare identifiers. The conversion is called the Social Security Number Removal Initiative or SSNRI. The resources include:
Beginning in April 2018, CMS will start sending new MBI Medicare cards to all beneficiaries. It is recommended that facilities begin using the new Identifiers as soon as possible. A transition period, where providers can use either HICN or MBI to exchange data with CMS, will begin no earlier than April 1, 2018, and run through December 31, 2019.
On November 1, 2016 CMS will hold an Open Door Forum conference call on the removal of Social Security Numbers from Health Insurance Claim Numbers (HICN). HICNs will be replaced by randomly created Medicare Beneficiary Identifiers (MBIs) starting in 2018. For more information see https://nwrnbulletins.wordpress.com/2016/09/29/mbi-replaces-hicn/ .
The call well be held at 11am PDT, 800-837-1935, conference ID 98745631. For TTY services, dial 800-855-2880. CMS requests that participants dial in at least fifteen minutes before the scheduled start time.
CMS has also advised that between now and 2018, all patients and facilities should make sure that their mailing addresses are kept current. MBIs will be mailed to patients, and facilities will have to ask patients for their MBI. Patient addresses in the Medicare, SSA, and CROWNWeb databases should all agree, with a correct and complete address to which the US Postal Service delivers.