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CAP and ACLA seek to delay move to single ABN form.

The American Clinical Laboratory Association and the College of American Pathologists have asked CMS to delay elimination of the lab-specific Advance Beneficiary Notice (ABN) form currently used to notify patients that Medicare is unlikely to cover a particular service. CMS presently uses two standardized ABN forms--one for general use and one that is specific to clinical lab services. Earlier this year, CMS proposed to replace the two separate forms with a single version that all Part B providers would have to use.

ACLA wants CMS to reconsider doing away with the lab-specific form, saying that much effort and expense went into creating and implementing the form, which has worked well in practice. According to the association, changing the form would require labs to re-educate patients and physicians and to incur substantial new costs to reprogram software and systems.

CAP also wants the lab-specific form retained, at least until CMS addresses the College's concerns over customizing the proposed new form, requiring disclosure of the estimated cost for the lab testing, and lab provider liability when another entity is responsible for securing the ABN from the beneficiary.

The current ABNs were scheduled to expire at the end of May under the Paperwork Reduction Act. However, until a new form is finalized, providers must continue to use the two currently approved ABNs, either of which may be used for lab services.

by AMT Legal Counsel

Michael N. McCarty

Brickfield, Burchette, Ritts & Stone, P.C.
COPYRIGHT 2007 American Medical Technologists
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Title Annotation:government news; College of American Pathologists and American Clinical Laboratory Association; Advance Beneficiary Notice
Author:McCarty, Michael N.
Publication:AMT Events
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 1, 2007
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