IVR System to Provide “Same or Similar” Equipment Info to Callers

HME suppliers working with Jurisdiction A (NHIC Corp.) and Jurisdiction B (National Government Services) DME MACs can now use those entities’ interactive voice response (IVR) systems to access information on Medicare beneficiaries’ same or similar equipment status.

Starting last month, those DME MACs implemented an IVR option to enable suppliers to check for same or similar equipment without having to input each HCPCS code separately. When a supplier speaks the number of one code, the IVR system “will check for codes that may be considered same or similar,” according to news releases from the two DME MACs. The IVR system “will also provide certain details, such as initial date, recertification and/or revision dates, length of need and certifying supplier contact information.”

The “same or similar” info will be available for “base codes, not related accessories or drugs. For instance, if a beneficiary has a manual wheelchair (K0001) and legrests (K0195), the same/similar option will only provide equipment that is the same/similar for the K0001. No information will be given on the K0195. The Certificate of Medical Necessity option will still be available, which can give accessories and/or drugs related to a base code.”

The IVR number for NHIC Corp. is (866) 419-9458.

The IVR number for National Government Services is (877) 299-7900. Customer service reps will not be able to provide the same/similar equipment information provided by the IVR.

This article originally appeared in the June 2009 issue of Mobility Management.

About the Author

Laurie Watanabe is the editor of Mobility Management. She can be reached at lwatanabe@1105media.com.

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