CMS Moves the Deadline for Requirement to Begin Using New ABN

CMS recently moved the date when practices and providers are required to use the new ABN form due to the impact COVID-19 is having.  The new version of the ABN, dated to expire on 06/30/2023, is now required for use on or after January 1, 2021.  CMS noted:

“The ABN, Form CMS-R-131, and instructions have been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for renewal.  Due to COVID-19 concerns, CMS has expanded the deadline for use of the renewed ABN, Form CMS-R-131 (exp. 6/30/2023).  At this time, the renewed ABN will be mandatory for use on 1/1/2021.  The renewed form may be implemented prior to the mandatory deadline.  The ABN form and instructions may be found in the download section.”

In a prior, July 13, 2020, webnews we posted news about the new ABN where the date for mandatory use was August 31, 2020.  This new information updates that post.  You can view that old new item at this direct link.

You can use the new ABN version immediately if desired, but all uses of the older version must cease as of the new date – January 1, 2021.  Use of an improper version could be considered an invalid notice.

We also have an FAQ on the proper use of the ABN forms.  You can link to purchase it at nominal cost here.  Importantly, the official ABN is not for use for Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) or for private payers; check with them for how they want financial waivers to be accomplished.

We are available and happy to assist you with issues such as this and other topics related to eye care.  We’re proud to also announce a new set of webinars related to changes coming in 2021 on Evaluation and Management eye exam coding, so contact us if you are interested.  Stay safe.

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