NLM logo

ALT (Alternative Billing Concepts) - Synopsis

Search ALT in the UMLS Metathesaurus
(requires a free UMLS license)

Web site:

Alternative Billing Concepts (ABC) codes are produced and maintained by ABC Coding Solutions (formerly Alternative Link).

ABC codes fill in the gaps of traditional medical code sets and the gaps caused by the retiring of state-specific Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) III codes. The codes reflect items that are not represented in other code sets.

ABC codes include descriptions of integrative healthcare services, remedies, and supplies. An ABC code is a five letter string followed by a two character code modifier. The string identifies the service, remedy, or supply item. The code modifier identifies the practitioner type.

ABC codes may be used by health care practitioners and insurers for updating medical records, billing, processing claims, and managing benefits.

Update Frequency
ABC is updated annually.

Metathesaurus Update Frequency
ABC is no longer updated in the Metathesaurus. The last update was the 2009AA release.

Sites Consulted

  1. ABC Coding Solutions – Alternative Link [Internet]. [Albuquerque (NM)]: Alternative Link; c1996-2009 [cited 2009 Jun 11]. About us; [cited 2009 Jun 11]. Available from:; ABC code and terminology maintenance and development:; ABC code structure:; Frequently asked questions: