News and Notes

  • Are you getting a Future Date Warning Message when you try to add a service date in 2017? Here is what you need to do: From the main FastEMC 5010 Menu, select 5-FastEMC Utilities, B-Add/Modify Batch File, then Press ENTER, ESC and answer Y to the "Create Batch File NOW" question. Exit your FastEMC software all the way back to the desktop, then open your shortcut and go back to add the claim. That should do it.  This happens every 5 years and we slide the century forward 5 more years.  It helps when entering the patient age so it will fall in the right century.  If you have not created a new batch file in the last 5 years, then this fix will automatically change the settings and move them 5 years forward.  
  • FastEMC partners with Availity Advanced Clearinghouse We can setup your business with an account at Availity Advanced Clearinghouse.  Send all your claims electronicially.  Save on your office costs. Even claims for Paper Payers can be sent electronically and they will print and mail. Compare our plans which start at $69.95 per month per Rendering Provider for 450 claims, 450 Eligibility Checks, Unlimited Remits.  You continue to use your software and just generate an ANSI 5010 file that can be uploaded. We will supply support with the Availity setup and help when questions arise. If you do not have software, we can also discuss the advantages of using our software to manage your claims.
  • ICD-10 transistion happened without issue. Reminder: All claims with Date of Service 10/1/15 or after must use ICD-10. Create a new claim if some services were before 10/1/15 and some are on or after. Enter your codes without the decimal. Please take the time to review your ICD-9 codes to be sure you understand the new ICD-10 codes that you will need to report those same diagnoses properly. Full Payment depends on it.
  • Please make sure that you invest the time and money to set up a proper back-up for your computer records. Back-ups should be a part of every office’s daily routine and it protects your customer data if the computer were to fail.
  • The changes required to post the Sequestration amount are now available in FastEMC.  If you are posting Medicare Payments it will make it much easier to apply the correct EOB amounts.  Since the 2% Sequestration amount is taken from the Payment Side it was not easy to make the right postings. Medicare Allows = Insurance Payment + Deductible + Seqestration Disallow + Co Insurance Deducting an Disallow Amount from the payment was not built into the calculations making it impossible to post properly. FINAL NOTE: The Sequestration Disallow can not be passed on to the Co-Insurance or Patient.
  • Electronic Statements are here FastEMC is pleased to announce the availability of BillFlash statement delivery and ePay to our cusotmers.  This will give you the convenience of electronic billing and payment notifications.  Coupled with the speed and ease of FastEMC claims submissions, your cash flow will be accelerated and lost claims will becoume a thing of the past.  No longer will you have to spend time and money printing and mailing statements to patients.
  • Version 4.0 is available on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Web site to download, for FREE.  Adding support for Microsoft Windows 7 (32 or 64 bit), Vista (32 or 64 bit) and XP (32 or 64 bit). Codes.ini file for Remittance Advice Remark Codes and Claim Adjustment Reason Code were also updated.  See "How to Update (Import the CARC/RARC codes" in the MREP instructions.  Installing Version 4.0 includes the new codes.
  • Check us out on Facebook! The first 40 customers to like our page will get a $5 discount on their next bill, so hurry up and Like us!!! Post a comment. Once you like the page, please send us a message on facebook with your account number or practice name and we will apply the credit immediately. (Limit one credit per account)
  • Some new CPT Procedure Codes go into effect on January 1, 2013 for some specialties.  This is never a problem, the FastEMC system allows  CPT codes to be added into FasteEMC as you add a claim, or they can be added directly into the Procedure Data using the option on the Maintenance Menu.  We do not manage the CPT database that you use.

Security and your data for HIPAA Sake!

All providers are required by HIPAA to protect Patient Health Information.  For users for FastEMC this means the following things should be the responsibility of the Provider.

1. Make sure any computers with FastEMC are login and password protected.  This controls access to the data.

2. Make sure the computers are secured from theft.  Make sure the computers log off users after a time or that computers are returned to LOGIN when not in use.

3. Make backups of your data regularly.  Keep backups of data secured from theft.  If the backup is on a media such as a thumb drive, lock it in a safe or some other such place to keep it from being stolen.

4. Reasonable care must be taken with any reports or paper copies that contain PHI also.  Be sure to shred reports instead of just tossing in the trash.

5. Get Business Associates agreements with any party not a direct employee of your practice that would be given access to your PHI besides the PAYER or Clearinghouse.  You can find samples of these kinds of agreements from the AMA or other medical associations.


CMS-1500 02/12

The paper claim format for CMS is changing in April 2014.  Be sure to do an update to make sure you have the final version on your system.  We did do a patch on the layout on 3/6/14 to fix a small issue.



What Happens to my Claims?

Your claims travel a bit before they reach their destination at the Payer.  But here is the process and what happens along the way.

You type a claim into FastEMC on your computer.  The claim is added to your next Transmission file.  You connect to your clearinghouse/payer and upload the Transmission file  Within a few minutes, they generate a report called a ANSI 997 or a File Acknowledgement Report.  The file was run through a very basic edit to see if it was formed correctly.  If rejected at this point, it never goes anywhere else, so your first report would indicate if it was accepted.  This is an all or nothing step.  If there is a problem, the entire file is tossed out.


What is ICD-10 and does it apply to your practice?

There is a big buzz about ICD-10.  the diagnoses ICD-9 codes currently in use will be abandoned and the new ICD-10 codes will be required.  Changing this list will be big for the coders and payers.  FastEMC is ready.  But in the next year, it will be important to start doing a little study to bring your practice up to speed on this change.  The new codes are structured very different.  We will be giving you more information as the time for this change approaches.

How should I add an IL Medicaid Transportation Claim?

New Diagnosis Guidelines for Illinois Medicaid Transportation Providers

Transportation - A diagnosis code is required on all 5010 claims. If the diagnosis code is provided by the treating physician or other practitioner, enter the code(s) as you would any Diagnosis code(s) both in the Diagnosis codes shown at the top line of the screen, and then identify the code on the service line that identifies the need for that service. (In ANSI speak that puts it in HI*BK segment of the 2300 loop).

If there is no diagnosis code available, transportation providers can use a default ICD-9 code of 799.9.

Note: Effective 10/01/2014, the new ICD-10 code set will be implemented, thus making the ICD-9 code value invalid. A valid ICD-10 code must be used on all claims with a service date of 10/01/2014 and after.


How to keep a good record of your claim batches

How to keep a good record of your Transmissions

It is very important to keep track of the progress of your processed claim batches. Each batch is assigned a batch number and it is printed on your Transmission Report along with a Chart to use for your notes.

  1. Note the date the batch was uploaded in the chart.
  2. Note when the clearinghouse sent acknowledgement receipt and it was accepted and approved.
  3. Write down when you receive an EOB for that batch.
  4. Finally, and this is the most important step. Note when you have received payment for that batch.
The chart has columns to allow for batches that might be sent to different clearinghouses or Payers.

Does FastEMC support NPI?

Yes, FastEMC offers full support for the National Provider Identifier. Starting with HCFA ANSI 8.04 and UB ANSI 8.03, FastEMC also added a stop date for legacy identifiers to comply with NPI-only standards that some payers, including Medicare, have mandated. Before you start submitting claims without legacy identifiers, you should check your provider file to make sure that the identifier for your tax ID (either E for employer identification number or S for Social Security number) matches your NPI registration. Visit our NPI Corner for more information.

What version of FastEMC do I need for NPI?

You need to be running FastEMC HCFA ANSI 8.0 or UB ANSI 7.20 in order to send the NPI. In order to be fully compliant with Medicare's new NPI-only standard (effective 5/23/08), you will need to be using HCFA ANSI 8.04 or UB ANSI 8.03.

Specialty Code

UB92 — Code Not Applicable

Code Specialty Code Specialty Code Specialty Code Specialty
01 General Practice 28 Colorectal Surgery (Proctology) 58 Medical Supply Comp w/Pharmacist 81 Critical Care (Intensivists)
02 General Surgery 29 Pulmonary Disease 59 Ambulance Services Provider 82 Hematology
03 Allergy Immunology 30 Diagnostic Radiology 60 Public Health or Welfare Agency 83 Hematology/Oncology
04 Otolaryngology 32 Anesthesiologist Assistant 62 Psychologist 84 Preventative Medicine
05 Anesthesiology 33 Thoracic Surgery 63 Portable X-Ray Supplier 85 Maxillofacial Surgery
06 Cardiology 34 Urology 64 Audiologist 86 Neuropsychiatry
07 Dermatology 35 Chiropractic 65 Physical Therapist 89 Certified Clinical Nurse Specialist
08 Family Practice 36 Nuclear Medicine 66 Rheumatology 90 Medical Oncology
09 Interventional Pain Mgmt. 37 Pediatric Medicine 67 Occupational Therapist 91 Surgical Oncology
10 Gastroenterology 38 Geriatric Medicine 68 Clinical Psychologist 92 Radiation Oncology
11 Internal Medicine 39 Nephrology 69 Clinical Laboratory 93 Emergency Medicine
12 Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy (OMM) 40 Hand Surgery 70 Multi-specialty Clinic or Group Practice 95 Interventional Radiology
13 Neurology 41 Optometry 71 Registered Dietitian/Nutrition 96 Optician
14 Neurosurgery 43 Certified Registered Nurse Assistant (CRNA) 72 Pain Management 97 Physician Assistant
16 Obstetrics Gynecology 44 Infectious Disease 73 Mass Immunization Roster 98 Gynecology/Oncology
18 Ophthalmology 45 Mammography Screening Ctr. 74 Radiation Therapy Centers A0 Hospital
19 Oral Surgery (dental only) 46 Endocrinology 75 Slide Preparation Facilities A1 Skilled Nursing Facility
20 Orthopedic Surgery 47 Independent Diagnostic Testing (Lab) 76 Peripheral Vascular Disease A2 Intermediate Care Nursing Facility
22 Pathology 48 Podiatry 77 Vascular Surgery A3 Other Nursing Facility
24 Plastic and Recon Surgery 49 Ambulatory Surgical Center 78 Cardiac Surgery A4 Home Health Agency
25 Physical Medicine and Rehab 50 Nurse Practitioner 79 Addiction Medicine A5 Pharmacy
26 Psychiatry 57 Individual Certified Prosthetist-Orthotist 80 Licensed Clinical Social Worker A6 Medical Supply Company w/ Respiratory Therapist

My practice management or EMR software offers billing support, too. Why do I need FastEMC?

While many EMR and practice management systems claim to offer billing functions, this feature has often been added as an afterthought. Here at FastEMC, we specialize in electronic medical claims (hence the EMC) and have been HIPAA compliant longer than anybody else in the industry! It's what we do best.     --- ICD-10 codes - NO PROBLEM ---


Does FastEMC support EMR?

FastEMC is not a full EMR application though we do offer patient scheduling and account. However, FastEMC can be coupled with virtually any EMR application that you already own or plan to purchase. When you integrate FastEMC with your EMR application, you'll still have all the benefits that come from using our software, including our great claims management and tracking functionality.

The function of an EMR is to track the charting and treatment side of the business.  These are not necessarily the same thing.  It will slow down the doctor to add billing functions when he/she does their treatment posting.  It will slow down the billing department to include charting in the functions they are responsible to post.


Why do I have to subscribe to a service plan?

Your service plan subscription includes all software maintenance, updates, and unlimited toll-free support. Keeping your software current is critical to staying compliant with government and payer requirements. Your service plan gives you a low-cost, worry-free solution. You won't have unexpected charges or expenses, and you will always have the latest software available to you. That way, you'll be ready for the next big change. And the next one. And the next one after that.


What do similar software packages cost?

Similar packages can cost $4,000 or more for each version, and they do not include the inevitable updates or your actual claims processing fees. FastEMC provides real value. You get all the power of this feature-rich software at a fraction of the cost of most other packages.


Why do you have one low monthly fee instead of separate charges for upgrades?

At FastEMC we believe that by following the current healthcare trends and charging a lot for our software and subsequent upgrades, we will only frustrate our customers and inhibit many customers from staying current by upgrading. By including all of your software costs, plus upgrades, in your monthly subscription fee, we guarantee that you will have access to all updates, patches, fixes, and new government requirements without having to plan for the additional costs. A fixed, predictable monthly cost will help both of our businesses run more smoothly.


Does using FastEMC make my practice HIPAA compliant?

Not necessarily. Although FastEMC is a HIPAA-compliant solution, using FastEMC alone does not necessarily make your practice compliant. You must adhere to Federal guidelines in all areas of your business. For more information about who the act covers and what your specific obligations are visit the HHS FAQ page or CMS HIPAA Homepage.


Is FastEMC HIPAA Compliant?

Yes. FastEMC stores and transmits your data following all HIPAA data and security regulations. In fact, FastEMC has been trasmitting HIPAA compliant claims longer than anyone else in the industry! Plus your monthly fee includes all on-going software updates to ensure that you continue to comply with new guidelines.

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