Medical Records

In the event of a claim review, information contained directly in the contemporaneous medical record is the source required to justify payment except as noted elsewhere for prescriptions and CMNs. The medical record is not limited to treating physician/practitioner's office records but may include records from hospitals, nursing facilities, home health agencies, other healthcare professionals, etc. (not all-inclusive). Records from suppliers or healthcare professionals with a financial interest in the claim outcome are not considered sufficient by themselves for determining that an item is reasonable and necessary. DMEPOS suppliers are reminded that:

  • Supplier-produced records, even if signed by the prescribing physician/practitioner, and attestation letters (e.g. letters of medical necessity) are deemed not to be part of a medical record for Medicare payment purposes.
  • Templates and forms, including CMS CMNs, are subject to corroboration with information in the medical record.
  • A prescription is not considered to be part of the medical record. Medical information intended to demonstrate compliance with coverage criteria may be included on the prescription but must be corroborated by information contained in the medical record.

In addition to the general requirements discussed above, certain DMEPOS items may have specific documentation requirements. Details regarding these policy specific requirements are contained in the applicable LCD-related Policy Article.

Reminders

CMS Medicare Learning Network (MLN) Matters (MM) Special Edition 1022 indicates, "The Medicare program does not have requirements for the media formats for medical records. However, the medical record needs to be in its original form or in a legally reproduced form, which may be electronic, so that medical records may be reviewed and audited by authorized entities. Providers must have a medical record system that insures that the record may be accessed and retrieved promptly."

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Last Updated Sep 05, 2018