Pile of PECOS news: CMS schedules forum, associations survey providers, industry scrambles to search database

Thursday, February 4, 2010

BALTIMORE - CMS will host a Special Open Door Forum Feb. 17 to discuss Medicare provider enrollment issues, including the controversial Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System (PECOS) for physicians. Also on the agenda: provider and supplier reporting responsibilities; Medicare ordering and referring issues; and revalidation efforts. To participate in the 2 p.m. EST forum, call 800-837-1935 and use the ID 52537484.

Industry surveys providers

ARLINTON, Va. - AAHomecare and state and regional HME associations completed a survey of providers last week on the number of PECOS-related warnings messages they're receiving. Industry stakeholders plan to use the results of the survey to show CMS and members of Congress that providers are still receiving a high number of warning messages, despite the recent release of a new database of physicians that have national provider identifier (NPI) numbers and PECOS registrations.

Industry scrambles to search database

BALTIMORE - The problem with CMS's new PECOS database, which is 16.63 MB in size, 13,653 pages long and available only in PDF format: It's difficult to search, stakeholders say. To ease the burden, The VGM Group is in the process of converting the database into a more user-friendly "SQL" file, it announced last week. Fastrack announced that its application will compare physicians in CMS's database with physicians in a user's database, as well as keep count of registered and unregistered physicians. PFS, a billing firm, announced that it has added the database to its application, making it easier for users to query physicians and notifying them when NPI numbers and PECOS registrations don't match up. To access CMS's database, go to www.cms.hhs.gov/MedicareProviderSupEnroll