42 C.F.R. 424.57 (a) defines a supplier as "an entity or individual, including a physician or a Part A provider, which sells or rents Part B covered items to Medicare beneficiaries and which meets the standards in paragraph (c) of this section."
In most cases a manufacturer does not sell or rent items to a beneficiary, but sells items directly to the facility or physician providing the service. Therefore, the manufacturer would receive payment from the facility or physician and Medicare would in turn pay the facility or physician for the services and items provided.
Since the manufacturer is not providing items directly to beneficiaries, the manufacturer is unable to meet the Medicare definition of a supplier and therefore unable to apply for billing privileges.
last updated on 04/02/2013