CMS has directed Medicare administrative contractors to hold Medicare Part B claims for services provided from Jan. 1 through Jan. 14 of this year for two weeks before processing them.
According to information relayed via a special edition of MLN Connects Provider eNews(www.cms.gov) published on Dec. 29, the delay was instituted to give the agency an opportunity to correct errors discovered in the final 2015 Medicare physician fee schedule(www.gpo.gov) after it was published in the Federal Register on Nov. 13, 2014.
The agency's intent is to ensure that claims are processed correctly.
According to CMS, the hold should have a "minimal impact" on physicians' cash flow. The agency pointed out in the MLN notice that, "Under current law, clean electronic claims are not paid sooner than 14 calendars days (29 days for paper claims) after the date of receipt."
Family physicians needn't worry about Medicare claims for services that were rendered on or before Dec. 31, 2014. According to CMS, those claims are unaffected by the hold order and will be processed within normal time frames.