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New Medicare System To Fight Medical Identity Theft

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015, requires Medicare to remove Social Security Numbers (SSNs) from all Medicare cards by April 2019.  Recently, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have announced a process to execute this fraud protection program.

A new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) will replace the SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on the new Medicare cards for Medicare transactions like billing, eligibility status, and claim status beginning next April.  Currently, CMS use an SSN-based HICN to identify people with Medicare to administer the program.

The enhancements include:

  • Protection of private health care and financial information, and federal health care benefit and service payments
  • Unique, randomly generated, "non-intelligent" characters which are not associated with any other personal identification numbers (PINs)
  • More current systems to minimize cybersecurity threats involving medical identity theft

For more about the system and plans for implementation, visit CMS’s website describing the program >>

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