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The scoop for ISMS practice management professionals

January 2018
In this Issue

  • Medicare Webinars: Nix Those Claim Errors; Take a Deep Dive into “NGSConnex”


    Check out these Medicare Part B webinars taking place soon, courtesy of National Government Services, Inc. (NGS) – your Medicare carrier for Illinois (Jurisdiction 6). 

    January 25: NGSConnex New User Orientation       

    Are you a newly registered NGSConnex user? Learn how this NGS portal works and what transactions can be completed. The webinar will also cover resources available to those who use NGSConnex.


    January 30: NGS Initiative to Reduce “Unprocessable” Claims

    Assigned and nonassigned services are considered unable to be processed – or in claim speak, "unprocessable" – when incomplete or invalid information is detected in NGS' claims processing system. This webinar will provide a review of common claim errors, and how to complete a "clean claim." 


  • What Documents Should You Collect When Hiring APRNs or PAs?

    If your medical office is preparing to hire an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) or a Physician Assistant (PA), check out ISMS' handy licensure checklist.

    The resource covers what documents you will need to collect when hiring APRNs or PAs, or when your physician plans to sign a written collaborative agreement with any of these health care professionals.

    Download the APRN & PA Licensure Checklist today! 

    Any questions? As a practice management professional of an ISMS member, you may contact the ISMS Legal Department with questions at 800-782-4767 ext. 6485 or send an email

    Please note: ISMS cannot provide legal advice, and private legal matters should be referred to your practice attorney.

    This checklist is an ISMS member benefit and is password protected. If you wish to access this resource and need to request a username and password as a practice management professional of an ISMS member, please contact us. 

  • Find That New Hire with ISMS' Career Center!
    Career Center

    Tasked with filling a position in your practice?

    Rely on the ISMS'  Career Center, a national online network where you can list open positions for physicians, health care workers and practice management professionals. 

    ISMS member offices receive the discounted rate of $115 to post a job opening for 30 days ($400 for non-members) and $175 for 60 days ($500 for non-members). 

    Start searching for your new team members today!

    Learn more about other ISMS Benefit Partners.

  • Did You Hear About That New PMP Law?

    In mid-December, Governor Rauner signed into law a requirement that all prescribers possessing an Illinois controlled substance license must register with Illinois' Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) by Jan. 1, 2018. There is also a new requirement to access the PMP before writing an initial prescription for a Schedule II narcotic, such as an opioid, with some exceptions.

    So if the prescribers in your office are licensed to prescribe controlled substances in the state of Illinois – regardless of whether they prescribe opioids – they still must register with the PMP

    Learn more with ISMS’ Frequently Asked Questions!

    If you need personal assistance, please contact the ISMS Division of Health Policy Research & Advocacy at 800-782-4767 ext. 1470 or by email. As a practice management professional of an ISMS member, we are standing by to help you! 

  • Get Ready: Soon ALL Medicare Patients Will Carry Shiny New ID Cards!

    If your office sees Medicare patients, a blitz of new ID cards will begin appearing at your check-in desks in April.


    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has launched an initiative to combat fraud and better protect patients.

    Unfortunately, people age 65 or older are increasingly the victims of personal identity theft. Not only do they experience financial loss, damaged credit ratings and many more difficulties, this type of crime can also result in inaccuracies with medical records and, of course, fraudulent claims.

    The big change is that the cards will no longer contain social security numbers. Instead, they will use a unique, randomly-selected number called a Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI), an 11-digit number using alpha and numeric characters. In April 2018, the MBI will replace the current Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN), which is based on the individual’s social security number.

    CMS will begin to mail the new cards to beneficiaries in April 2018, and also plans to implement a transition period that will run from April 2018 through Dec. 31, 2019

    Be prepared! Test your system and work with your billing staff to ensure that your medical office will be ready to use the new MBI format. 

    If you have questions, practice management professionals of ISMS members may contact the ISMS Division of Health Policy Research & Advocacy at 800-782-4767 ext. 1470 or by email.

    You may also visit CMS' New Medicare Cards web site.

  • Is Your Office a Medical Corporation? If So, Ensure Its License is Up-to-Date


    Medical corporations, limited liability companies, and professional service corporations in Illinois must be licensed each year by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR).

    Regardless of the date when the license was issued, corporate licenses expire at the end of each year – December 31.

    If your practice has not yet renewed, log on to IDFPR's Online Services Portal to do so. 

    Please note: Paper applications for renewing or obtaining a first license for medical corporations are no longer being accepted. 

    If your practice missed the December 31 deadline, IDFPR may issue a notice of violation to the corporation, which may involve late fees, disciplinary proceedings against the corporation, or financial penalties. 

    ISMS recently published an Issue Brief with information about requirements for Illinois medical, limited liability and professional services corporations. Click here to download a free copy.

    If you have questions, contact David Porter at 312-580-2468 or by email.

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