Commercial Prior Authorization: Code Updates Effective Jan. 1, 2022; Cardiology (Echo) Webinars in December

December 1, 2021

What’s Changing: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) is changing prior authorization requirements that may apply to some commercial non-HMO members. A summary of changes is included below.

Changes include:

  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Advanced Imaging Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) codes previously reviewed by AIM Specialty Health® (AIM)
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Cardiology codes previously reviewed by AIM
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Medical Oncology codes previously reviewed by AIM
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Multiple Stimulation codes previously reviewed by BCBSIL
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Radiation Oncology codes previously reviewed by AIM
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Removal of Spinal Cord Stimulation codes previously reviewed by BCBSIL
  • Jan. 1, 2022 – Addition of Cardiology (Echo) codes for some additional commercial non-HMO members to be reviewed by AIM*

*Note: This change was announced in a previous News and Updates; it’s included again here as a reminder. Also see below for training related to this change.

Targeted Training: Cardiology (Echo) Requests
AIM is conducting targeted training sessions to help you navigate when and how to submit prior authorization requests for cardiology (echo) services. Three sessions are planned for this month: December 7, 8 and 9. Contact your Provider Network Consultant  for details and registration links.

Important Reminders
Always check eligibility and benefits first through the Availity® Provider Portal  or your preferred vendor portal, prior to rendering services. This step will confirm prior authorization requirements and utilization management vendors, if applicable.

Even if prior authorization isn’t required for a commercial non-HMO member, you may still want to submit a voluntary predetermination request. This step can help avoid post-service medical necessity review. Checking eligibility and benefits can’t tell you when to request predetermination, since it’s optional. But there’s a Medical Policy Reference List  on our Predetermination page to help you decide.

Services performed without required prior authorization or that do not meet medical necessity criteria may be denied for payment and the rendering provider may not seek reimbursement from the member.

More Information: Refer to the Utilization Management section of our Provider website. Updated procedure codes are posted on the following page: Support Materials (Commercial)

CPT copyright 2020 American Medical Association (AMA). All rights reserved. CPT is a registered trademark of the AMA.

Checking eligibility and/or benefit information and/or obtaining prior authorization is not a guarantee of payment. Benefits will be determined once a claim is received and will be based upon, among other things, the member’s eligibility and the terms of the member’s certificate of coverage, including, but not limited to, exclusions and limitations applicable on the date services were rendered. If you have any questions, call the number on the member's ID card.

AIM Specialty Health (AIM) is an independent company that has contracted with BCBSIL to provide utilization management services for members with coverage through BCBSIL. Availity is a trademark of Availity, LLC, a separate company that operates a health information network to provide electronic information exchange services to medical professionals. Availity provides administrative services to BCBSIL. BCBSIL makes no endorsement, representations or warranties regarding any products or services provided by third party vendors.