Q: The CPT Assistant advice on how to apply modifier -59 to CPT code 29874 (knee arthroscopy with removal of loose/foreign body) seems to conflict with NCCI edits. Do the NCCI edits override the advice in CPT Assistant ?
Q: Can you please help me determine the query opportunities and code assignment/sequencing argument related to a patient who was admitted with pneumonia, congestive heart failure, acute respiratory failure, and encephalopathy?
Q: We have trouble billing multiple units of injections and infusions – mostly CPT add-on codes 96375 and 96376–that are done during observation stays and exceed the medically unlikely edits number. What is the correct way to bill these and get paid?
Q: One of my coworkers thought we needed the phrase “unable to clinically determine” as an option on every multiple-choice query we send. My take on it is that if we have “other” with an option for free text, that would cover us for compliance. Further, I thought it was inappropriate to include this option in some cases, as it may offer an option that is preventing me from obtaining the detail and specificity I need.
Q: I am the coding manager for our inpatient coding department. I am wondering if I should create an audit plan to monitor new coders or difficult diagnosis. If so, is there anything specific I should consider when trying to implement a plan?
Q: Facilities often have two charges for services performed in an operating room (OR) suite. For example, a facility performs a colonoscopy and an esophagogastroduodenoscopy, which took a total of 20 minutes in the procedure room. The facility charged two set-up fees plus an additional five minutes of OR time. Would this be considered a duplicate charge?
Q: If a patient is admitted to the hospital with diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and cholelithiasis, and is treated for both, would you code the cholelithiasis as the principal diagnosis because the patient had his or her gallbladder removed?
Q: We have claims that are hitting an edit between a procedure HCPCS code and the new codes for moderate sedation (99151–99153). Since moderate sedation is no longer inherent in any procedure beginning January 1, why are these scenarios hitting an edit?
Q: My hospital’s coding team keeps having trouble distinguishing between J44.0 (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with acute lower respiratory infection) and J44.1 (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with [acute] exacerbation. Is there any guidance out there that can help clarify their differences? We would appreciate any help.
Q: We just heard about a new add-on HCPCS code for 2017, C1842 (retinal prosthesis, includes all internal and external components; add-on to C1841) for the Argus Retinal Prosthesis, but are not sure how to report it along with C1841 (retinal prosthesis, includes all internal and external components). It has nearly the same description as C1841, so this is confusing.
Q: I have a question about coding a medically induced coma. For example, how would I report a patient on a Precedex drip for alcohol withdrawal, supported with mechanical ventilation, and intensive nursing care?
Q: We have an off-campus, provider-based department that is “non-excepted,” so we have to report modifier –PN (nonexcepted service provided at an off-campus outpatient, provider-based department of a hospital). Is that just for the services that would be paid under the OPPS if the department were “excepted”?
Q: I notice the parenthetical remarks underneath the new 2017 CPT spinal epidural injection codes (62321, 62323, and 62327) indicate that fluoroscopy, CT, and ultrasound codes are not to be reported with the code. However, the code descriptors only include fluoroscopy and CT, without any mention of ultrasound (76942). Is ultrasound included in the description for 62321?
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