August 01, 2007


UPDATE (Feb. 11, 2016): See the Sept. 1, 2013, JAVMA News article "National Provider Identifier numbers not for
" for updated information.

 Some veterinarians questioned about National Provider Identifier status

Posted July 15, 2007

Veterinarians are not required to obtain a National Provider Identifier, a unique identification number for certain health care providers. The 10-digit number applies only to health care providers covered under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 and to health care providers and suppliers who bill Medicare for their services.

Recently, the AVMA received some phone calls from members who said they were asked to supply their clinic's NPI numbers by pharmacies whose services they use for filling their patients' prescriptions. Not having an NPI number should not bar veterinarians from having prescriptions filled at pharmacies.

To find additional NPI information, visit the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services overview page online at