Complying With Medicare Signature Requirements

June 18, 2018
Rick Gawenda

Documentation must meet Medicare’s signature requirements. If Medicare claims reviewers cannot validate the signatures, Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) deny the claim, assess an error, and begin recouping overpayments.

Questions I receive regarding signatures include the following:

  • How does CMS define a handwritten signature?
  • What if I use a scribe when documenting medical record entries?
  • What is required for a valid signature?
  • What should I do if I did not sign a medical record?
  • What if I signed the order or progress note but my signature is not legible?
  • What is a signature log?
  • Am I able to attest to my signature?
  • Do my signatures need to be dated?
  • What are the guidelines for using an electronic signature?

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  1. Good morning…for some reason it will not let me view this full article even though I am a gold member…I can go back and view the old articles in full but for some reason this article will not show up…thanks in advance for any assistance

    1. If you see the words: I hope you enjoyed this article. Thank you for being a Gold Member!, you are seeing the entire article.

  2. Rick,
    I believe we have a grasp on the requirements of getting the physician signature, but was wondering if there was specific guidelines for the PT signing their documentation?
    I believe they need their name and professional designation with a date, but not sure if they need to also include their license number?

    1. The Medicare program and most insurance carriers do not require the license number be on their documentation. I have seen some state practice acts have that requirement though. I would suggest you review your state practice act for any special requirements it may have.

  3. Good morning, I am trying to access Medicare Medical Guidelines, would there be a printable version available.