Effective May 13, 2023, the Division of Coal Miner Workers’ Compensation Program (DCMWC) will require medical providers and facilities to submit supporting medical documentation for services they provide to claimants for their covered black lung conditions. You must attach supporting medical documentation when you submit a Health Care Finance Administration form (HCFA-1500) for professional services rendered in a physician’s office, or a Uniform Medical Billing form (UB-04) for all hospital services except non-emergency services of 24 hours or less (for which you may use either form).
The provider submitting the reimbursement form is responsible for attaching sufficient supporting documentation to substantiate the medical services or supplies billed. The supporting documentation must be attached to the bill submission and must support the billing codes submitted on the reimbursement form. All medical services provided to DCMWC claimants must be documented in the submitted supporting documentation, including the date of service, the miner’s name and date of birth, and a signature of the rendering provider that is both legible and time/date stamped.
More information on how to upload and submit bills and attachments through the Workers Compensation Medical Bill Portal’s Direct Data Entry function is available at https://owcpmed.dol.gov/. This link also has training tutorials to help you get familiar with the entire process.
If you have any questions, regarding the contents of this letter, please contact DCMWC’s medical bill processing vendor at 1-800-638-7072.
TELEHEALTH BILLING GUIDANCE is presented by the DCMWC to assist providers in understanding acceptable billing codes for telehealth services as they relate to the Black Lung program. Click here for additional information regarding DCMWC telehealth guidelines.
The Division of Coal Mine Workers' Compensation, or Federal Black Lung Program, requires prior approval of the pre-transplant evaluation for lung transplants and the lung transplant itself for Black Lung beneficiaries (20 C.F.R. § 725.705).
Information about an individual's general eligibility for medical benefits may be obtained by calling the District Office where the patient's claim file is located, or by calling the Black Lung toll-free number at (800) 638-7072. Eligibility for medical benefits does not automatically include approval for a pre-transplant evaluation or a lung transplant.
Before seeking approval for a pre-transplant evaluation or a lung transplant, a medical center must be approved as a lung transplant center by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), or the request will automatically be denied. The list of approved transplant centers is available at:
After reaching the homepage, select the “Resources” link on the upper right hand of the page. A pop-up window will open. Select link for “List of CMS-Approved Organ Transplant Programs”. This will open an excel spreadsheet which contains certification information for all Medicare-certified transplant programs, organized by State. Please refer to the approved lung transplant programs.
Approved lung transplant centers must determine if the patient's medical benefits are the responsibility of a coal mine operator or insurer or the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund. The patient should have this information. For a pre-transplant evaluation or transplant to be considered, it must be necessitated by the coal miner's black lung condition and directly related conditions. If the patient is covered by an insurer or coal mine operator, the company's approval must be obtained prior to a pre-transplant evaluation or transplant. Pre-transplant evaluation and transplant coverage is decided on a case-by-case basis. The Federal Black Lung Program expects coal mine operators or insurers to provide the same coverage that it does. The documentation that coal mine operators or insurers require to determine whether or not they will approve coverage may vary.
If the patient is covered by the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund, the approval process must be initiated by emailing the request to https://owcpmed.dol.gov or by calling the toll-free number (800) 638-7072.
Requests for pre-transplant evaluations and lung transplants should include basic information including the patient's name and date of birth, as well as the name of the facility performing the evaluation or transplant.
Additionally, a request for a pre-transplant evaluation must include a physician's letter of justification. A physician's letter of medical justification is a well-rationalized narrative statement, prepared by a qualified physician who has been actively treating the patient for their pulmonary condition. The letter of medical justification represents the physician's independent assessment and opinion and must include a brief review of the claimant's pertinent medical history, a brief statement regarding the claimant's current medical condition, and explanation of the claimant's medical need for a lung transplant evaluation.
Requests for lung transplants must include the medical facility's lung transplant protocols and all medical records produced for the pre-transplant evaluation, including the results of all tests, consultations, and narrative reports.
After the Federal Black Lung Program evaluates the information submitted, it will notify the requestor of a determination regarding coverage. Any pre-transplant evaluation or transplant performed prior to receiving prior approval by the Federal Black Lung Program will be denied.
Any questions about pre-transplant evaluations or transplants should be directed to the Division of Coal Mine Workers' Compensation at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the toll-free number (800) 347-2502.