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Medicare will start mailing new cards beginning April 2018. CMS intends to remove Social Security Numbers from all Medicare cards by April 2019 in accordance to law. A new unique Medicare number will replace the current Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on the new cards.

There will be geographical waves of mailings and the process will take time. Medicare identified total 7 waves divided by states. Mailing Schedule can be accessed here: Medicare Mailing Schedule

How will it affect you?

All of your business processes and businesses must be ready to accept new Medicare Number by April 2018 for all transactions, including billing, eligibility verification and interactions with Medicare.

There will be a transition period when you will be able to use both old and new member IDs. The transition period will start April 1, 2018 and run through December 31, 2019.

How to get ready for the change?

  1. Inform your staff.
  2. Update all office forms requiring use of Medicare ID.
  3. Talk to your patients. Ask for new Medicare card. Patient Flyer
  4. Talk to you EHR and software vendors. Are they ready?
  5. Submit test claims during transition period. Do not wait until last minute.

New Medicare card sample:

March 2018