Coders select E/M levels based on criteria developed by their organization. CMS has proposed a significant change to E/M coding-replacing the current 20 E/M levels for new patients, existing patients, and ED visits with three G codes-but that change would only apply to Medicare patients and only to the facility side.
Coders use the same CPT ® codes to report outpatient services whether they are coding physician or facility services. Jaci Johnson, CPC,CPC-H,CPMA,CEMC,CPC- I, and Judy Wilson, CPC, CPC-H, CPCO, CPC-P, CPPM, CPCI, CANPC, CMRS, examine the similarities and differences between coding in the two settings.
Radiation oncology uses high-energy radiation to shrink or kill tumors or cancer cells with minimal harmful effects to healthy surrounding cells. To correctly code for radiation oncology services, coders need to understand the various elements of the treatment.
In the coding world, it’s a never-ending clash that can cause compliance concerns—facility vs. professional. Kimberly Anderwood Hoy, JD, CPC , and Peggy Blue, MPH, CPC, CCS-P, explain how coders in each setting use different codes for the exact same services based on the payment systems, the rules, and how each setting applies those rules.
The biggest operational change for outpatient facilities for 2013 does not appear in the 2013 OPPS final rule. Instead, CMS announced changes to reporting therapy services in the 2013 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) final rule.
Misusing modifier -25 (significant, separately identifiable evaluation and management (E/M) service by the same physician on the same day of the procedure or other service) can be an expensive proposition. Sarah L. Goodman, MBA, CHCAF, CPC-H, CCP, FCS, and Debbie Mackaman, RHIA, CHCO, explain how to determine when an E/M service is significant and separately identifiable.
Misusing modifier -25 (significant, separately identifiable E/M service by the same physician on the same day of the procedure or other service) can be an expensive proposition. Just ask Georgia Cancer Specialists I, a leading oncology practice in Atlanta.
The rules for coding for facilities and physicians are basically the same for most services, but coders follow different rules for appending certain modifiers. Christi Sarasin, CCS, CCDS, CPC-H, FCS , Kimberly Anderwood Hoy, JD, CPC , and Peggy Blue, MPH, CPC, CCS-P, separate physician and facility rules for using modifiers -26, -TC, and -79.
Medicare Advantage plans rely on the Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCC) system for reimbursement. HCC payments are linked to the individual health risk profiles for the members in the plan. MA Plans use ICD-9-CM codes as the primary indicators of each member’s health status. Therefore, it is essential for MA plans to make sure that providers capture the complete diagnostic profile of patients through accurate and complete physician coding. Holly J. Cassano, CPC, explains why coders need to have a complete understanding of the HCC process and risk adjustment, as well as the effects on the provider, the member, the MA plan, and overall reimbursement.