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The scoop for ISMS practice management professionals

January 2020
In this Issue

  • Tips to Avoid Claim 'Hiccups' in 2020
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    Here are a few strategies that will help to keep claim payment hassles at bay for the entire year.

    For patients coming in to your office after January 1, be sure to inquire whether their insurance carrier has changed. If so, ask the patient for his or her new insurance ID cards so files can be updated.

    Effective Jan. 1, 2020, Medicare will ONLY accept claims with the Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI). Claims MUST be submitted using the MBI for Medicare transactions – no matter what date the service was performed.  

    Also, this is the perfect opportunity to verify demographics (address, telephone numbers, etc.) to ensure that your office has current information. As you know, if demographics on file in the physician's office differ from the insurance company's information, claims may be denied.

    While you're at it, ensure that all office policies and procedures are up-to-date, including those for HIPAA.

    Here's to a great year! 

    Questions? As a practice management professional of an ISMS member, you may contact the ISMS advocacy team by calling 800-782-4767 ext. 1470, or by  sending an email.  

  • Access the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Alert About Coronavirus
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    The death toll from the coronavirus continues to soar and the cases are now in the thousands. 

    The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) released a Health Alert last week, a comprehensive four-page resource that includes what physicians need to know

    As we prepare to publish, there are five cases of coronavirus confirmed in the United States. These patients had recently visited Wuhan, China. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 100 people in the United States are currently being tested for the respiratory illness.

    Airline passengers traveling directly or indirectly from Wuhan to the United States are being screened at five airports – Chicago O’Hare International Airport being one of them. Additional airports are expected to begin screening soon.

    The CDC is closely monitoring the novel coronavirus and offers details about the illness here.

  • The MIPS 2019 Data Submission Period Now Open Through March 31

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has opened the data submission period for Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) eligible clinicians who participated in the 2019 performance period of the Quality Payment Program (QPP).

    Data can be submitted until 7 p.m. (CST) on March 31, 2020.

    Here's how to submit 2019 MIPS data:

    1. Go to the Quality Payment Program website.
    2. Sign in using your QPP access credentials.
    3. Submit your MIPS data for the 2019 performance period or review the data reported on your behalf by a third party. 

     Questions? As a practice management professional of an ISMS member, you may contact the ISMS advocacy team by calling 800-782-4767 ext. 1470, or by sending an email.  

  • How do Moms, Dads or Legal Guardians Consent for Medical Services When They Can’t be Present?
    mom and dad with kid at appt

    Parents or legal guardians may authorize medical services for a minor child when they cannot be present. 

    ISMS offers a sample consent form for just that purpose. Parents or legal guardians can use the form to authorize other adults to bring their minor patient in for treatment. The form also serves as consent for medical services.

    Download ISMS' Consent To Treat Minor Patient Without Parent or Guardian Present* form and keep copies on hand to distribute to families when necessary. The document also acknowledges that parents and legal guardians are still financially responsible for the medical services provided to the minor child. 

    If you have any questions, please contact ISMS' legal department at 800-782-4767 or by email

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

    *This guideline is for educational purposes only. 

  • Are Your Patients Having Problems With the High Cost of Medications?
    ilrxcard pharmacy coupon

    During the past year, about 29% of American adults did not take their medicines as prescribed because of the cost.

    ISMS offers a benefit partner that may help ease the high costs of medications. It’s called the Illinois Rx Card. Patients can save up to 75 percent on their prescription drugs with this FREE card!  

    This savings program was launched to help uninsured and underinsured Illinois residents afford their prescription medications. The program can also be used by patients who have health insurance coverage with no prescription benefits. 

    Physicians who are interested in ordering free cards for their clinic or hospital may contact Program Development Director Stacy Miller by email or by calling 888-615-1988.

    Check out other ISMS Benefit Partners

  • Remind Your Physicians About the Advantages of 'PMPnow'
    man holding clock

    The Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) offers a free service called PMPnow that integrates with an electronic health record system to automatically query the PMP. 

    The PMP is an incredibly valuable tool that makes it possible for prescribers and dispensers to view controlled substance prescriptions dispensed in Illinois.

    In other words, save time! 

    Prescribers no longer need to enter their credentials to log into the PMP website for every search.

    Your physician can request a connection here for PMPnow. For more information, visit the PMPnow website

  • Renew ISMS Membership for 2020!
    feb 1

    Physicians who have not renewed their ISMS membership for 2020 will have their benefits discontinued on Feb. 1, 2020.

    ISMS members may renew online, or call the Division of Membership Services at 800-782-4767 ext. 1900.  

  • Free Practice Management Help Is Available to YOU!
    woman writing

    As a practice management professional for an ISMS member, you have access to numerous resources.

    If you need help with quality reporting, medical records, HIPAA privacy and security policies, credentialing or reimbursement, or are experiencing hassles with various government agencies and third party payers, we’re here to help!

    The ISMS Division of Health Policy Research and Advocacy assists members and their staffs! 

    Contact the team with your questions by calling 800-782-4767 ext. 1470, or by sending an email

    ISMS also has a special content page for our practice management professionals. 

    You don't have to go it alone!

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