This article is intended to assist all providers that will be affected by Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) implementations. CMS is providing this information to make you aware of what to expect as your FI or carrier transitions its work to a MAC. Knowing what to expect and preparing as outlined in this article will minimize disruption in your Medicare business. Please note that other Medicare contractors servicing your region will be unaffected by this change, such as the Qualified Independent Contractor (QIC for reconsiderations), Recovery Audit Contractor (RAC), the Program Safeguard Contractor (PSC), and the Zone Program Integrity Contractor (ZPIC).
Medicare Contracting Reform mandates that the Secretary for Health & Human Services replace the current contracting authority to administer the Medicare Part A and Part B Fee-For-Service (FFS) programs, contained under Sections 1816 and 1842 of the Social Security Act, with the new MAC authority. Medicare Contracting Reform requires that CMS conduct full and open competitions, in compliance with general federal contracting rules, for the work currently handled by FIs and carriers in administering the Medicare FFS program.
When completed, there will be 15 new MACs processing Part A and Part B claims. Each MAC services a distinct set of contiguous states, also known as a “jurisdiction”. Each MAC will handle different volumes of work based upon the geographic breakout of the 15 MACs. Because of this, the MACs will vary in geographic size and the amount of work they handle. Having 15 MACs should result in greater consistency in the interpretation of Medicare policies, which is a key goal of Medicare Contracting Reform.