CMS Announces Upcoming Section 111 Webinar / WCMSA Reference Guide Update Released

November 15, 2022

Red Medicare button on a keyboard to illustrate Medicare conditional payment.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently published a Section 111 reporting webinar notice and an update to its CMS WCMSA Reference Guide.

CMS Section 111 Reporting Webinar

CMS will hold a Section 111 NGHP Webinar on December 6, 2022, at 1:00 PM ET.  The notice says:

CMS will be hosting a Section 111 NGHP webinar. The format will be opening remarks by CMS, a presentation that will include NGHP reporting best practices and reminders followed by a question and answer session. For questions regarding Section 111 reporting, prior to the webinar, please utilize the Section 111 Resource Mailbox PL110-

The webinar notice can be found here.  We encourage anyone involved in the management of Section 111 reporting to tune into it.  Please note that there is no pre-registration; instead, the link and call-in phone numbers are on the notice.  You just log in shortly before the webinar’s start time.

WCMSA Reference Guide Update

The update to CMS’s WCMSA Reference Guide, Version 3.8 provides for changes to the re-review criteria. (Because CMS does not have a formal appeals process after an MSA determination, it allows what are called re-review submissions).  Currently, CMS allows for re-reviews for mathematical errors and missing documentation.  It has now added a section for submission errors which provides:

Submission Error: Where an error exists in the documentation provided for a submission that leads to a change in pricing of no less than $2500.00, a re-review request may be made by submitting updated documents free of errors that caused the original review outcome. Amended documents must come from the originators with appropriate notation to identify that the error was corrected, along with the date of correction and no less than hand-written “wet” signature of the correcting individual. Note: This submission option is only available for approvals from September 1, 2022 forward.

  •  Examples include, but may not be limited to: medical records with incorrect patient identifying information or rated ages where the rated-age assessor provided incorrect information in the rated-age document.

Rather than applying to submitter errors, this addition to the re-review policy appears to account for errors in the documentation that was provided to the submitter, such as a rated age or medical records.

Tower conducts a thorough review of all relevant documentation when the MSA is prepared and submitted.  Consequently, documentation errors are identified and corrected before MSA submission.  As such, we expect to make minimal use of the Submission Error Re-Review.

CMS also added a new section entitled Re-Review Limitations:

16.2 Re-Review Limitations

 Note: The following re-review limitations are only available for approvals from September 1, 2022 forward.

 Re-review shall be limited to no more than one request by type.

 Disagreement surrounding the inclusion or exclusion of specific treatments or medications does not meet the definition of a mathematical error.

 Re-review requests based upon failure to properly review already submitted records must include only the specific documentation referenced as a basis for the request.

It appears that the long-time policy of unlimited re-reviews has come to an end.  We understand CMS’s statement that a re-review “shall be limited to no more than one request by type” to mean one re-review is allowed for a mathematical error, one for missing documentation, and one for a submission error.

CMS’s intention for stating that a “disagreement surrounding the inclusion or exclusion of specific treatment or medications does not meet the definition of a mathematical error” is not clear.  While perhaps not a math error, when medical records from a treating physician clearly say surgery is no longer recommended or medication has been discontinued but CMS includes such treatment or medication in the MSA, we submit it as an error.

Tower has submitted numerous re-review requests to remove or modify treatment or medication from the MSA based on treating physician statements in the medical records.  Tower has a 68% success rate with re-reviews when CMS previously issued an MSA counter-higher, proof that these are reasonable requests. We hope the addition of Section 16.1 does not signal CMS’s intention to reject these reasonable re-review requests.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dan Anders, Tower’s Chief Compliance Officer, at or 888.331.4941.