United States

Senior Living Health Care Connection: New Medicare cards coming

SENIOR LIVING HEALTH CARE CONNECTION  | 

In an effort to increase security for Medicare beneficiaries, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will issue new Medicare cards with a new randomly assigned number called a Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI). Medicare cards will no longer contain or be linked to the Social Security-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN). Mailing of the new cards to Medicare beneficiaries will start in April 2018. All cards are scheduled to be replaced by Jan. 1, 2020.

Providers are encouraged to work with their billing vendors to update their billing files when the new cards are issued even though health care providers will be able to bill during the 21-month transition period using either the MBI or the HICN. In October 2018, through the transition period, claims submitted with the valid HICN will return with both the valid HICN and the new MBI on the remittance advice for those claims.

Action steps

  • Providers should verify all of their Medicare patients’ addresses. If the addresses you have on file are different than the Medicare address you get on electronic eligibility transactions, ask your patients to contact the Social Security Administration and update their Medicare records.
  • Providers should initiate practices to encourage beneficiaries to bring in their new cards.

For more information, visit https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/SSNRI/Providers/Providers.html or contact Joan McCarthy at +1 312 634 3479.

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