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Normal, low and high calibrator solution / chips

HCPCS code

Name of the Procedure:

Normal, Low, and High Calibrator Solution / Chips (HCPCS Code: A4256)

  • Common Names: Calibration Solution, Calibration Chips
  • Technical Terms: Calibration Standard, Reference Solution


Calibration solutions or chips are used to ensure the accuracy and precision of medical devices, particularly glucometers, which measure blood glucose levels. These calibrators come in different concentrations to test the device's accuracy across the expected range of measurements.


These calibrators address the need for accurate glucose monitoring in patients with diabetes or other conditions requiring regular blood glucose level measurements. The goal is to ensure the glucometer readings are correct, thereby allowing proper management of a patient's condition.


Calibrator solutions or chips are indicated when:

  • A new glucometer is being set up.
  • A glucometer’s accuracy is being questioned.
  • Periodic maintenance is required to confirm ongoing accuracy.
  • The device experiences extreme temperature changes or is dropped.

Patient Criteria:

  • Anyone using a glucometer for blood glucose monitoring.


  • No special preparation is required for the patient.
  • Ensure that the glucometer is clean and in working condition.
  • Gather the calibrator solutions or chips designated as Normal, Low, and High.

Procedure Description:

  1. Normal Calibrator:

    • Turn on the glucometer and insert the normal calibrator solution or chip as per the manufacturer's instructions.
    • Wait for the glucometer to read the calibrator.
    • Ensure the reading matches the expected value indicated on the calibrator packaging.
  2. Low and High Calibrators:

    • Repeat the same process with the low and high calibrator solutions or chips.
    • Insert each calibrator into the device and verify that the readings are within the acceptable range provided.


  • Glucometer
  • Calibrator solutions or chips marked as Normal, Low, and High


  • None required.


  • The entire process typically takes about 5-10 minutes.


  • Performed at home, outpatient clinics, or healthcare facilities where glucometers are used.


  • Usually conducted by the patient or caregiver.
  • Can be overseen by a healthcare professional if needed.

Risks and Complications:

  • Minimal risk involved.
  • Potential complications include incorrect calibration leading to inaccurate glucose readings.


  • Ensures the accuracy of blood glucose measurements.
  • Helps in better disease management.
  • Benefits are realized immediately upon verification of correct readings.


  • No recovery process as it is a device calibration procedure.
  • Follow the usual blood glucose monitoring routine.


  • Professional laboratory calibration (typically more expensive and time-consuming).
  • Using a different glucometer known for higher reliability.

Pros and Cons of Alternatives:

  • Laboratory calibration may offer higher accuracy but is less convenient.
  • Switching devices might provide immediate accuracy but involves learning a new system.

Patient Experience:

  • Simple and straightforward.
  • Patients should experience no pain or discomfort.
  • Minimal interaction and disruption to daily routine.

Medical Policies and Guidelines for Normal, low and high calibrator solution / chips

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