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The Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB) oversees the registration process for the reporting of legal blindness. Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 6, Section 136 requires that all eye care providers report within 30 days all cases of legal blindness to the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB).
Upon receipt of the report of legal blindness from the eye care provider, MCB reviews and makes a determination of legal blindness. The office of the Central Register notifies the newly registered consumer by mail. A member of the MCB staff then contacts the consumer (unless instructed not to) to offer an appointment to explain the services of MCB. The eye care provider also is provided with confirmation that the patient has been registered.
Select eye care providers now have the option of submitting the Legal Blindness Report form through the Virtual Gateway. The MCB Legal Blindness system enables eye care providers to make secure, online reporting of legal blindness through a business service on the Virtual Gateway. Note that the paper Legal Blindness Report is available for use and submittal.
Benefits of Electronic Reporting of Legal Blindness:
- Simplifies eye care providers' compliance with the MA law that requires all eye care providers to report within 30 days all cases of legal blindness to the MCB
- Increases reporting of legally blind persons and enables MCB to make outreach and offer services to more legally blind persons
- Results in more timely reports and increases legally blind consumers' access to needed services.
- Improves public health surveillance of legal blindness and associated diseases such as diabetes.
- Increased efficiency and accuracy of online forms versus mailed or faxed forms
- Cuts down on the use of paper and makes the form easier to access (no need to keep copies of paper forms in the office)
- Makes registration more efficient and results to more timely service delivery for MCB
Refer to the Registration Information for Eye Care Providers pamphlet for information on this program. To request a copy of this pamphlet, please send your inquiry to RegUnit@state.ma.us.
Virtual Gateway Deployment and Training Resources
Information for New Virtual Gateway Organizations
Roadmap to Readiness Guide for MCB Legal Blindness Report
The Road Map to Readiness for MCB Legal Blindness Report highlights the steps and resources available to ensure a smooth deployment for you to successfully enroll, train, and submit MCB Legal Blindness Reports on the Virtual Gateway.
To register on the Virtual Gateway, all organizations must complete and sign certain forms and documents. At a minimum, all organizations new to the Virtual Gateway must download and complete three forms. The Roadmap to Readiness Guide will guide you through the process of completing the appropriate forms.
- Virtual Gateway Services Agreement
The Virtual Gateway Services Agreement sets forth the terms and conditions that your organization must agree to in order to access the Virtual Gateway. The Agreement must be signed by an individual who has the legal authority to sign on behalf of your organization, as evidenced by your organization's charter or bylaws. This form only needs to be completed once - the first time your organization signs up to use the Virtual Gateway.
- Access Administrator Designation
Each organization must designate an individual to be their Virtual Gateway Access Administrator. He or she is responsible for approving, modifying, and/or removing user access privileges for any of the Virtual Gateway's business services used by your organization. The Virtual Gateway Designation of Access Administrator Form must be signed by an individual who has the legal authority to sign on behalf of your organization, as evidenced by your organization's charter or bylaws.
MCB User Request Form (URF)
In order to gain access to the Virtual Gateway, an organization's Access Administrator must complete the appropriate User Request Form (URF). Please download a copy to your desktop, complete the form (refer to the MCB User Request Form (URF) - Frequently Asked Questions below for guidance), and email the complete form to the email address indicated on the form.
- MCB User Request Form (URF) - Frequently Asked Questions
This document contains FAQs that will assist users in completing the MCB User Request Form (URF).
- MCB User Request Form (URF) - Frequently Asked Questions
Virtual Gateway Login Assistance
- New Users Day One Guide: How to access the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB) Legal Blindness Report
This quick reference guide will guide eye doctors through the login process when accessing the Virtual Gateway for the first time.
- Login Help for Providers and State Agency Staff
This link will direct users over to online computer-based training and reference guides that will assist users with guidance on how to log in to the Virtual Gateway and reset a forgotten password.
Virtual Gateway Training
- MCB Legal Blindness Report Online Computer-based Training (posted 3/8/2012)
This online training course allows eye doctors to learn how to access and data enter the MCB Legal Blindness Report on the Virtual Gateway.
- MCB Legal Blindness Report Reference Guide (posted 3/8/2012)
The MCB Legal Blindness Report Reference Guide contains step-by-step directions and corresponding screen captures which walk eye doctors through the Virtual Gateway online reporting process.
Other MCB Resources
- Mandatory Report of Legal Blindness (paper) Form
- Registration Information for Eye Care Providers (pamphlet)
Email RegUnit@state.ma.us for a copy
To request information on becoming a Virtual Gateway user, Virtual Gateway training information or if you have any questions about the MCB Legal Blindness Report, please send your inquiry to RegUnit@state.ma.us.