On April 1, 2018, CMS will start mailing Medicare cards with new Medicare Beneficiary Identifiers (MBIs) to everyone with Medicare. The MBI will replace the Social Security Number (SSN)-based Health Insurance Claim Number for transactions like billing, eligibility status, and claim status after a transition period.
You must be ready to accept the MBI beginning April 1. People new to Medicare after April 1 will only get a card with the MBI.
- Get ready to use the new MBI Format. Ask your billing and office staff if your system(s) will be ready to accept the 11 digit alpha numeric MBI. If you use vendors to bill Medicare, ask them about their MBI practice management system changes and make sure they are ready.
- Consider automatically accepting the new MBI from the remittance advice (835) transaction.
- Prepare to process Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) claims: Ensure your staff can identify the RRB Medicare card; program your system to send these patients’ claims to the Specialty Medicare Administrative Contractor (the MBI itself will not indicate it is an RRB beneficiary).
- Make and internally test changes to your practice management systems and business processes before April 2018.