CMS wants burdens eased

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Providers will have their say about the future of Medicare Administrative Contractors. 

But first, they have to volunteer for a study of the MACs, and then elicit candid feedback. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services put out a notice asking for cooperation in January.

Ultimately, CMS officials will survey a random sample of long-term care operators to learn their feelings about the MACs.

Providers quickly became exasperated with MACs when the new contractor groups started asking for more billing information in the fall. Operators reported miscommunication, delayed responses and otherwise baffling answers to their requests to provide therapy beyond Medicare Part B therapy cap levels. 

CMS has specifically solicited feedback regarding ways to diminish providers' burdens, such as through automated information collection. The agency also has asked for feedback on how useful and necessary the information collection has been, as well as for methods that could improve the collection process.

Providers can submit comments electronically via www.regulations.gov, or by direct mail to the CMS Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs. 

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