As of May 1, 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) released a new application, MCReF (“the portal”), which allows a Medicare Administrative Contractor to electronically transmit a Medicare cost report. With this implementation of the new portal, the only way to electronically submit the cost report is via the MCReF portal.
What does this mean for you? As with any new application and technology there is a learning curve, including; how to set-up a login; how to access the portal; and, how to upload the cost report filing. The following is a list of tips to help you get started:
Access to the portal is restricted to the Provider Statistical and Reimbursement (“PS&R”) System Security Official and Backup Security Official. In simpler terms, if someone in your company already has access to download a PS&R report, then access is already granted to the portal. If your company has never accessed the PS&R report, then you will need to register a security official with the Enterprise Identity Management (“EIDM”) System and request access to the portal. This process can take up to two weeks.
If your company already has access to the PS&R report, the login will be the same username and password used to obtain the PS&R report. Once a security official is set up within the EIDM system, the security official can log in at https://mcref.cms.gov with the credentials used to set up the account.
The upload process has been simplified so that files will not need to be mailed to Medicare, as long as the MCReF portal is utilized and electronic signatures are enabled. The only Medicare reports that currently do not have the electronic signature capability are the following: 222-92 (Rural Health Clinics), 2088-92 (Community Mental Health Centers), and 287-05 (Home Offices). To electronically sign the report, make sure the checkbox on Worksheet S is checked, apply a signature, and upload a scanned copy to the portal, along with all other required files. Once the upload is complete, an instant notification of receipt will be emailed to the company.
Although technology and changes to conventional processes can be cumbersome, Citrin Cooperman’s Healthcare Practice professionals are here to help and guide you through the process.