Part B payments delayed until Jan. 17

While providers should file claims as usual after Jan. 1, Medicare plans to hold claims with service dates between Jan. 1 and Jan. 16 until Jan. 17 to ensure any changes in coinsurance or deductibles taking place on the first of January are accounted for. These claims will be released on Jan. 16. Meanwhile, this holding period will count toward the 30-day ceiling carriers have to pay clean claims before being charged interest.

HCFA also will make scheduled January 2000 payment updates on Jan. 17, then retro actively apply the updates to all services performed between then and Jan. 1.

The same retroactive rule applies to any coding changes previously scheduled to take effect on New Year’s Day.