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HCFA 1500 Deadline Extended

The highly anticipated HCFA 1500 deadline has been extended for filing medical insurance claim forms. Originally April 1, 2007 was the cutoff for submitting HCFA 1500 (12/90) claim forms to insurance carriers for medical insurance claims. The new CMS 1500 (8/05) forms were all that were to be accepted after April 1. The CMS now states then targeted June 1, 2007 as the cutoff date.  Most insurance carriers by now are accepting only the new CMS 1500 forms.

The reason for this extension was due an error by (you guessed it) the Government. It is reported that they incorrectly formatted a version of the revised form and the incorrect format was released to some vendors. This resulted in some forms being printed with the incorrect format. It is a fairly minor difference, but the practice management systems would not be able to print the forms correctly on the incorrect format.

How can you tell if you have forms that were properly printed? The easiest way is to look at the top of the form. There is a small red arrow at the top right corner of the form. It should be approximately ¼” from the top edge of the form. On the improperly printed forms the arrow is touching or very close to the top edge. You will want to make sure your forms are printed correctly.

The new CMS 1500 forms are currently being accepted and processed by insurance carriers. Forms that are not printed to specification: off line, printing outside of boxes, etc. will be returned to the provider. This is intended to inform the provider of the problem so they can correct it.

So far the new forms seem to be going off without a hitch.  Most of us prepared ahead soon enough to make sure we were able to print and send the new claim forms with the NPI numbers.

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