NPI registry taking shape

Sunday, June 17, 2007

WASHINGTON - Providers can expect the National Provider Identification (NPI) online registry soon, said CMS officials during a June 14 conference call.

The registry will be a query-only database that will operate in real-time. The initial file, which will be viewable only after it is downloaded, will contain a "snapshot" of information that can be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), such as a provider's name and NPI number. Users will be able to narrow their search parameters, using a provider's city or zip code.

"Anyone with a computer and Internet access can enter a (provider) name or NPI and see a display of data," said an official.

Excluded information includes: Social Security numbers, taxpayer identification numbers, dates, states and countries of birth for providers.

Each month, an updated file will contain data for providers who receive NPIs or have changed or updated their initial records.

Providers can make changes to their file online at, or by calling the NPI enumerator at 800-465-3203 for a paper application.

Nearly 2.2 million NPI numbers have been issued, about 96% of Medicare's projected 2.3 million.