Medicare Beneficiary Identifier Social Security Number Removal

Posted January 10, 2018 by Judith Nelson

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015 prohibits the inclusion of Social Security numbers (SSN) on Medicare identification cards. This change is intended to protect the integrity of the Medicare program and is applicable to original Medicare as well as Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplemental business. A new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) will replace the SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on the new Medicare cards for Medicare transactions such as billing, eligibility status, and claim status. CMS considers the new MBI confidential, and it should be protected as personally identifiable information (PII). 

Beginning in April 2018, CMS will send the new Medicare cards with the MBI to all Medicare beneficiaries. There is a transition period where you can use either the HICN or the MBI to exchange data with them. The transition period will begin no earlier than April 1, 2018 and run through December 31, 2019. Current communication indicates that CMS is on target for the April 1, 2018 transition to the new MBI. 

DST Health Solutions is on track to complete the required modifications to our systems to use the new MBI. Additional information regarding the release schedule of specific solutions will be communicated through our normal customer communication channels. We have developed an on-demand webinar series addressing operational readiness for the transition to the new MBI. There are four webinars that address the MBI transition, organizational approach, and member and provider communication. You can access this information at Webinar Series.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding DST Health Solutions' support of the new MBI, contact your account executive for additional information. For more information on the new Medicare cards, see the CMS website: https://www.cms.gov/medicare/new-medicare-card/nmc-home.html

Judith Nelson headshot
Judith Nelson
Director, Medicare Advantage Strategy

The views expressed in this publication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of DST Systems, Inc. or its affiliates, subsidiaries, joint ventures, officers, directors, or management.




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