The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has designated Wednesday, June 15, as National 5010 Testing Day. Not the summer holiday you were hoping for? Buck up. We can’t say it will be fun, but hey, you may learn something.
With the deadline for upgrading to the HIPAA 5010 transaction standard set for Jan. 1, 2012, CMS is encouraging Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) and Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) trading partners to prepare for the deadline by testing on June 15.
"National 5010 Testing Day is an opportunity for trading partners to come together and test compliance efforts that are already underway with the added benefit of real-time help desk support and direct and immediate access to MACs,” said the CMS press release.
It is not certain how many providers (that would be you), clearinghouses, and vendors will join in the HIPAA 5010 test. CMS will release details about the June 15th test though MACs and state Medicaid agencies. Not all states wil be ready to take part in the test. The CMS will release details about testing June 15 through MACs and participating state Medicaid agencies. Note, not all states are participating.
A primary reason for the new protocol is to accommodate the larger data size of ICD-10, which is scheduled to replace the legacy ICD-9 in 2013. Without HIPAA 5010 in place, the transmission of ICD-10 patient data will not be possible. If you have not converted to the new system by January 1, 2012, you will likely experience an interruption in claims resolution and re-imbursement until you get things sorted out. If you use a billing service, you need to make certain that it intends to comply with the updated transmission standard, whether or not it participates in the test.