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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions are used to provide additional information and/or statutory guidance not found in State Medicaid Director Letters, State Health Official Letters, or CMCS Informational Bulletins. The different sets of FAQs as originally released can be accessed below.Frequently Asked Questions are used to provide additional information and/or statutory guidance not found in State Medicaid Director Letters, State Health Official Letters, or CMCS Informational Bulletins. The different sets of FAQs as originally released can be accessed below.

FAQ Library

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Upon analysis by states, what if an edit is found to be in conflict with a state law or regulation, but is currently included within a National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) methodology?

CMS allows states to consider edits on an individual, state-by-state basis. If a state determines that an edit in the Medicaid NCCI methodologies conflicts with one or more state laws, regulations, administrative rules, or payment policies, the state can request permission from CMS to deactivate the conflicting edit. States are not afforded the flexibility to deactivate edits after March 31, 2011, due to a lack of operational readiness.

If a state determines and documents that there is no other feasible way to comply with Medicaid NCCI edits, the state can send a request to deactivate that edit or those individual edits using the NCCI mailbox at NCCIPTPMUE@cms.hhs.gov. The request must include sufficient primary source documentation of the conflicting state law, regulation, administrative rule, or payment policy. States are no longer required to send NCCI deactivation requests to CMS Regional Offices.

FAQ ID:95166

Does the LTSS Reassessment/Care Plan Update after Inpatient Discharge measure include discharges for planned hospital admissions?

No; discharges for planned hospital admissions are excluded from the measure denominator. Identify planned discharges using the value sets (XLSX, 2.88 MB).

FAQ ID:89236

Does the re-assessment and care plan update need to include the core elements specified in the LTSS Comprehensive Assessment and Update and LTSS Comprehensive Care Plan and Update measures and be done face-to-face?

Yes, both the re-assessment and the care plan must include each of the nine specified core elements. The re-assessment and care plan must be done face-to-face unless there is documentation that the member refused a face-to-face encounter.

FAQ ID:89241

Why does the LTSS Reassessment/Care Plan Update after Inpatient Discharge measure exclude members who do not receive medical benefits through their Managed Long Term Services and Supports (MLTSS) plan?

The denominator for the Reassessment/Care Plan Update after Inpatient Discharge measure is identified through administrative claims for inpatient discharges. Managed care plans that are not the primary payer for inpatient care, which is usually covered under a medical benefit, do not routinely have reliable access to administrative claims for inpatient stays to identify individuals who are eligible to be counted in the measure denominator. Therefore, the eligible population for this measure is restricted to individuals who receive both medical and LTSS benefits through the managed care plan providing MLTSS.

FAQ ID:89246

What if my state wishes to require Managed Long Term Services and Supports (MLTSS) plans that are not providing medical care to report the LTSS Reassessment/Care Plan Update after Inpatient Discharge measure?

If MLTSS plans can obtain timely, complete, and accurate inpatient claims data for their members, then a state may choose to deviate from the measure specifications to require MLTSS plans not providing medical benefits report this measure. For example, because the timely transfer of information between hospitals and MLTSS plans is key to ensuring smooth transfers between settings of care, MLTSS plans may have access to hospital discharge data through state or regional health information exchanges. In some cases, MLTSS plans are working closely with hospitals to share timely information about admissions and discharges. In addition, some states have the data and capacity to construct this measure for MLTSS plans using Medicare claims data for Medicare- Medicaid dual eligible beneficiaries (see more information about state access to Medicare claims data).

FAQ ID:89251

If, after discharge from an inpatient facility, the member has not had a change in condition or needs, is a new comprehensive assessment and care plan required?

A reassessment with the member after they have been discharged from an inpatient facility is required to determine whether a member has had a change (or no change) in their LTSS needs. Even if the reassessment conducted post-discharge finds no change in a member’s LTSS needs, the second rate for this measure (Reassessment and Care Plan Update after Inpatient Discharge), Managed Long Term Services and Supports (MLTSS) plan care managers should conduct a care plan update and document that they considered each of the nine core elements of the care plan, and determined that the plan of care for each element remains the same; documentation of “no changes” in the care plan as a whole does not meet the numerator criteria.

FAQ ID:89256

What are National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) methodologies and are these methodologies compatible with the Medicaid program?

The NCCI methodologies are made up of the following four components:

  1. Sets of edits
  2. Definitions of types of claims subject to the edits
  3. Sets of claim-adjudication rules for applying the edits
  4. Sets of rules for addressing provider/supplier appeals of denied payments for services based on the edits

The NCCI methodologies include both NCCI Procedure-to-Procedure (PTP) edits and Medically Unlikely Edits (MUEs).

CMS issued SMDL #11-003 (PDF, 159.55 KB) on April 22, 2011, to state CMS policy on the requirement for appeals of claims for which payment was denied due to an NCCI edit. The nature of the appeals process in each state is left to the discretion of the state's Medicaid agency.

CMS currently has six methodologies for Medicare Part B. These methodologes are the following:

  1. NCCI PTP edits for practitioner and ambulatory surgical center (ASC) services
  2. NCCI PTP edits for outpatient services (including emergency department, observation, and hospital laboratory services) in hospitals reimbursed through the hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS). Edits are applied to all facility therapy services billed to the Medicare Fiscal Intermediary (Part A Hospital / Part B Practitioner Medicare Administrative Contractors processing claims with the Fiscal Intermediary Shared System).
  3. MUE units-of-service edits for practitioner and ASC services
  4. MUE units-of-service edits for outpatient services in hospitals
  5. MUE units-of-service edits for supplier claims for durable medical equipment
  6. Add-on code edits for practitioner and ASC services (added in April 2013).

After review, CMS determined that the first five NCCI methodologies listed above were compatible methodologies for claims filed in Medicaid. A sixth methodology for Medicaid was added in 2012: NCCI PTP edits for Durable Medical Equipment (DME).

FAQ ID:95121

What National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) methodologies did CMS find that are not compatible with Medicaid and that are currently being utilized in the Medicare program?

CMS determined that the five NCCI methodologies that were in place in Medicare in 2010 were compatible methodologies for claims filed in Medicaid and that these five methodologies must be incorporated in a state's Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS) for provider claims filed on and after October 1, 2010.

CMS works with the NCCI contractor to identify specific edits within the five methodologies which need to be modified or deleted for Medicaid. Also, edits are developed for the Medicaid NCCI program for services and items that are not covered or not separately payable by Medicare. CMS found that most state MMISs could not accommodate the add-on code edits used in Medicare. Therefore CMS provides those edits to the states for optional use as state-specific edits.

FAQ ID:95131

Upon analysis by states, what if one or more edits are found that are necessary to improve correct coding within a state's Medicaid program, but are not currently included within an National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI) methodology?

States are free to apply their own edits, in addition to the Medicaid NCCI edits, that meet the intent of the statute and would improve correct coding within their Medicaid programs. However, these state-specific edits should not be characterized as NCCI edits. If such state edits result in additional savings to the state's Medicaid program by promoting correct coding and reducing the error rate for claims payments, the state should recommend that CMS add these edits to one or more of the sets of Medicaid NCCI edits.

FAQ ID:95136

What guidance did State Medicaid Director Letter (SMDL) #10-017 implement?

SMDL #10-017 (PDF, 133.63 KB) issued on September 1, 2010 provided guidance on the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148), as amended by the Health Care and Education Recovery Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-152), together referred to as the ""Affordable Care Act"", which were signed into law on March 23, 2010. In this SMDL, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) provided guidance and established policy in support of implementation of section 6507, "Mandatory State Use of National Correct Coding Initiative (NCCI)", in Subtitle F, "Additional Medicaid Program Integrity Provisions", Title VI, "Transparency and Program Integrity".

FAQ ID:94991

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