Speech-language pathologists in private practice who are eager to enroll in Medicare should not enroll before June 2. That's the advice of the director for provider and supplier enrollment at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), who urged SLPs in private practice to use the Medicare Provider-Supplier Enrollment page on the CMS Web site for enrollment.
In a discussion with ASHA staff, the CMS staffer explained that attempts to enroll before June 2 will create extra work for the contractors, who will notify the SLP to wait.
CMS prefers that SLPs use the Provider Enrollment Chain and Ownership System (PECOS), a scenario-driven application. Clinicians will see that the Internet-based PECOS link displayed prominently on the left side of the CMS Medicare Provider-Supplier Enrollment page. The PECOS site provides complete information about the enrollment process.
SLPs should remember that Medicare contractors will not process the enrollment applications until July 6. The contractors work on a flow basis—the first applications in will probably be the first out, and cleaner applications have a better chance for early review. In other words, Medicare contractors will do a pre-screening. PECOS will accept enrollments starting on June 2 and not before.
Claims for services beginning July 1 can be submitted when enrollment is authorized. Claims will begin being processed on July 6. Providers will receive approval letters explaining the specialty code and other matters and will probably receive the letter from the CMS contractor in the same format of the application.