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My Location and CBSA is Missing!

Christine Woolstenhulme, QCC, QMCS, CPC, CMRS

We often get questions on missing Core Based Statistical Areas, known as CBSAs. CBSAs are used for pricing and other factors according to the geographical location. If you do not see your CBSA, it is important to note they are not missing - it may not have an assignment, according to CMS.  Find-A-Code uses government sources, such as CMS, for pricing and locations. Their CBSA list is used for correct reporting based on Medicare pricing and geographical location.

Understanding what a CBSA is and how it is used

CBSA/Location: CBSA is a Core Based Statistical Area. While some areas are incorporated, others are un-incorporated. According to the Census Bureau, this information is taken into consideration when assigning CBSAs to define populated areas. They are assigned by the geographical region by county. Therefore, an unincorporated area may not be assigned a CBSA. In this case, there is an option for selecting the "rest of {the state}". For example, Maryland is #21 - Rest of Maryland, Alaska is #2 - Rest of Alaska. This option is the first option directly under the state.

Consider Fort Washington, MD. This is listed as an unincorporated area, and is therefore not assigned to a CBSA. In this case, you would report #21 - Rest of Maryland. The information that Find-A-Code uses comes from the CBSAs assigned by CMS. There are times their list may be different from other lists. However, since we use CMS for pricing we must use their list for CBSAs as well. Therefore, if you think the CBSA is missing, it is simply not included in CMS' list. In this instance, you can use the Rest of {the state} option.