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 >>