Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , reviews common CPT and ICD-10-CM coding and documentation errors, such as unbundling, inappropriate modifier usage, and missing information, to help coders reduce their risk from audits.
The ICD-10-CM Manual was recently updated with new codes for peritonitis in association with acute appendicitis and the CPT Manual now includes new codes for gastrostomy tube replacements. Familiarize yourself with these changes to ensure accurate reporting of digestive diagnoses and treatments. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Findings show that pathologist involvement in the review and verification of CPT codes may reduce the need for code modifications at the time of sign-out auditing, according to the recent study published in the Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.
Even on a small scale, the implementation of an outpatient clinical documentation improvement (CDI) program can be overwhelming. Review advice from CDI specialists on developing successful outpatient CDI programs that facilitate accurate coding and billing.
A variety of therapeutic services can be used to treat patients suffering from debilitating mental health conditions. Clear up confusion surrounding CPT coding for these initial office visits, psychiatric diagnostic evaluations, and psychotherapy visits. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Reporting and billing hospital observation services can be confusing, particularly when the observation stay lasts more than one day. Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , writes about CPT coding for observation services based on time and the key components of the history, exam, and medical decision making of a patient.
Findings from a retrospective cohort study published in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine suggest that, on average, EDs may report higher-level E/M services for incarcerated individuals when compared to the general population.
CMS hit the brakes on making imminent changes to the oft-used E/M code set that’s tied to billions of dollars in medical practice revenue. Review updates to E/M payment and documentation requirements effective January 1 and the extensive changes planned for implementation in 2021 under the 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule final rule.
The 2019 CPT code update will impact reporting for dermatologic biopsies. Shelley C. Safian, PhD, RHIA, HCISPP, CCS-P, COC, CPC-I , reviews updated reporting guidance and CPT codes for these common types of biopsies.
CMS recently released the 2019 NCCI Policy Manual for Medicare Services , which includes updates to payment policies and coding methodologies effective January 1, 2019. The changes impact billing and reporting for spinal arthrodesis procedures and laboratory services.
The AMA updated the cardiovascular section of the 2019 CPT Manual to reflect advances in surgical treatment for cardiovascular conditions such as heart failure and aortic stenosis. Read about new and revised codes for the implantation and removal of leadless pacemakers, cardiac rhythm monitors, and other surgical devices commonly used to treat chronic heart conditions. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Beginning in 2018, total knee arthroplasty (TKA) was removed from the Inpatient Only List and assigned a comprehensive APC payment. Outpatient coders need to ensure they are assigning the correct CPT codes for TKA to reduce their hospital’s risk of audits.
It's been more than three years since CMS introduced a subset of modifiers it wants providers to report instead of modifier -59 (distinct procedural service), but they're still optional as barely any new guidance has been released.
Findings from an Office of Inspector General (OIG) audit show that Novitas Solutions Inc. overpaid hospitals for intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) services provided to nearly all sampled Medicare beneficiaries over a 30-month period, resulting in overpayments of at least $7.2 million.
Outpatient procedures involving anesthesia should be reported using five-digit CPT codes as well as applicable hospital modifiers. Review types of anesthesia administration and documentation elements required for accurate code assignment. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
The death of one twin in utero complicates oversight of a multifetal pregnancy. Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , reviews symptoms of vanishing twin syndrome and ICD-10-CM coding for continuing pregnancy after intrauterine death .
CMS recently released both the calendar year (CY) 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule and OPPS final rules last week, revising the payment structure for E/M office visits and expanding payment reductions for drugs purchased under the 340B discount pricing program by nonexcepted, off-campus, provider-based departments.
Q: A lung cancer patient presents to the infusion clinic to receive chemotherapy treatments. The patient receives a Carboplatin infusion, a Gezmar infusion, and an Anzemet intravenous push. Which CPT codes would be used to report these services?
Coders must have a solid understanding of complex terminology and CPT and ICD-10-CM coding guidelines to select the most specific codes for traumatic fractures and their treatments. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
The CMS risk adjustment model uses Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCC) to calculate risk scores based on ICD-10 diagnoses. Review HCC coding do’s and don’ts to help your facility manage risk effectively, enhance shared savings, and provide patient-centered care.
Coding and documentation teams can replicate an organization’s overall denial avoidance and management program by scaling it to the scope of denials for which they are responsible. Lynette Kramer, MA, RHIA , outlines a four-step process that coding teams can use to monitor claim data and establish accountability for denials.
According to the National Center for Chronic Diseases Prevention and Health Promotion, an estimated 5.7 million adults throughout the U.S. have heart failure. Shelley C. Safian, PhD, RHIA, CCS-P, COC, CPC-I, writes about ICD-10-CM coding for heart failure diagnoses and CPT coding for procedures used to treat the disease.
The FY 2019 ICD-10-CM update includes 54 code additions, three deletions, and 87 revisions to Chapter 19 of the ICD-10-CM Manual , “Injuries, Poisonings, and Certain Other Consequences of External Causes.” Review updated codes and guidelines for reporting burns, infections and sepsis following a procedure, drug abuse, and human trafficking. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Patients determined to have a tubo-ovarian abscess (TOA) require immediate and aggressive surgical therapy. Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , reviews clinical documentation and ICD-10-CM coding for TOAs as well as CPT coding for surgical interventions used to treat them.
A retrospective study recently published in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery found that 59% of reviewed cases across four institutions contained discrepancies between operative dictation and CPT coding for pediatric abdominal surgeries.
Before radiation therapy can be administered, several steps must be taken prepare the patient for treatment. Review CPT coding and documentation for the first two steps in the process: the initial consultation and preparation for radiation treatment. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Coding leadership can assist the chargemaster team by providing input, preparing appeals, and tracking coding-related denials. Rose T. Dunn, MBA, RHIA, CPA/CGMA, FACHE, FHFMA, CHPS , describes how to effectively work with a team of coders to combat continued denials.
Q: I received confusing guidance regarding CPT coding for a segmental spinal fusion with pedicle screws placed at L3 and L4 vertebrae. Would it be appropriate to report CPT code 22612 with add-on code 22614 for this procedure?
Medicare guidelines for reporting arthroscopic shoulder surgeries have changed significantly over the past decade. Review updated guidance and CPT coding for SLAP repairs as well as biceps tenotomy and tenodesis procedures to reduce audit risk. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, in 2013, 2 million people in the U.S. saw a physician for a rotator cuff problem. Review shoulder anatomy and CPT coding for rotator cuff repairs to improve coding accuracy. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
A nine-month audit conducted by a CDI specialist at a family practice and internal medicine clinic revealed 1,353 coding errors on physician-coded claims for outpatient office visits. Tammy Trombley, RHIT, CDIP, CCDS , reviews findings from this 2017 audit and discusses implications for risk-adjustment coding.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss among people age 50 and older, according to the National Eye Institute. Debbie Jones, CPC, CCA , reviews ICD-10-CM coding for AMD and CPT coding for treatments used to slow the disease’s progression.
The American Medical Association recently released the 2019 CPT code set, which includes 335 code changes, primarily for skin biopsies, fine needle aspirations, and central nervous system assessments. All changes take effect January 1.
In 2017, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared a nationwide public health emergency to address the opioid crisis, investing almost $900 million in opioid-specific funding to support treatment and recovery services. Learn about the epidemic and review ICD-10-CM coding and guidelines for reporting opioid use, abuse, dependence, and overdoses.
Continuing with numerous requests for comment in last year’s OPPS proposed rule, CMS is once again asking stakeholders for feedback on a variety of issues for potential future rulemaking. Review OPPS proposals for quality measure changes and policies aimed at improving interoperability and the electronic exchange of information between providers.
E/M code assignment for hospital admissions based solely on the provider’s documentation of face-to-face-time spent with a patient can be confusing and requires a detailed understanding of CPT guidelines. Lori-Lynne A. Webb , CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , reviews reporting requirements for E/M visit levels based on the provider’s documentation of time and CPT coding for hospital admissions.
Q: When is it appropriate to bill CPT code 77470 (special treatment procedure [e.g. total body irradiation, hemibody radiation, per oral or endocavitary irradiation]) for a special treatment procedure?
A common error and audit finding affecting providers is the lack of a physician order or physician signatures on medical documentation. Kimberly A. H. Baker, JD, CPC , reviews CMS guidance for physician signatures on medical documentation.
CMS’ 2019 OPPS proposed rule continues the agency’s efforts to enforce site-neutral payments and reduce drug payments by introducing policies to reduce reimbursement for hospital outpatient clinic visits at off-campus, provider-based departments (PBD) and expanding last year’s payment reductions for drugs purchased under the 340B discount pricing program by nonexcepted PBDs.
ICD-10-CM and CPT coding for glaucoma and retinal detachment requires a detailed understanding of coding guidelines as well as ocular anatomy and terminology. Explore the anatomy of the eye and review coding guidance for conditions that affect our view of the outside world. Note : To access this article, you must first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
The 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) proposed rule includes significant potential updates to E/M coding and reporting. Shannon McCall, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P, CPC, CEMC, CRC, CCDS , reviews the proposed changes and their potential impact on coding and billing for office visits and other outpatient services in 2019.
This second article in a series reviews common procedures used to isolate back pain and reduce inflammation including nerve block injections, facet joint injections, and facet denervation. CPT coding for these procedures is complex and requires a detailed understanding of spinal anatomy and terminology as well as coding guidelines. Note : To access this article, you must first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is not easily diagnosed and brings added risk factors to pregnancy oversight. Lori-Lynne Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, CDIP, COBGC, reviews ICD-10-CM coding for hypertension during pregnancy and related complications.
To succeed in a modern health information management (HIM) environment, coding departments need efficient coding specialists and knowledgeable management to monitor coder performance and provide feedback. Review expert guidance on hiring staff and determining work flow to improve the organizational structure of your coding department.
The 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) proposed rule, released July 12, introduces policies that focus on expanding the framework for reporting E/M visits and removing certain process measures under the Quality Payment Program (QPP).
Coding for pain management requires a detailed understanding of medical anatomy and terminology as well as the guidelines for reporting complex surgical procedures. Review ICD-10-CM coding for chronic and acute pain diagnoses and CPT coding for trigger point, joint, and epidural steroid injections. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
A July 2018 update to the OPPS clarifies that coders can report HCPCS code C9749 for an inherently bilateral procedure with modifiers -73 or -74 to indicate that the procedure was unilateral. Debbie Mackaman, RHIA, CPCO, CCDS, unpacks this seemingly contradictory guidance and addresses implications for coding and billing professionals.
Coding professionals will need to familiarize themselves with 2019 updates to the ICD-10-CM Manual , including significant changes to chapter two for neoplasms and chapter 5 for mental disorders. Shannon McCall, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P, CPC, CEMC, CRC, CCDS , summarizes important 2019 ICD-10-CM updates , which will impact payment for claims submitted on or after October 1.
Understanding when and how to report hospital modifiers is critical to ensuring compliant billing. Review CPT guidelines for modifiers -25, -50, and -59, as well as case studies and denial numbers by specialty, to reduce your risk from audits. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Provider documentation must meet required standards to support the level of care provided. Rose Dunn, MBA, RHIA, CPA/CGMA, FACHE, FHFMA, CHPS , reviews payer guidelines and medical necessity requirements under Medicare for services performed in the outpatient setting.
Q: A patient presents to the emergency department with chest pain. The physician orders multiple services along with a subsequent infusion without a stop time. What CPT codes would be used to report these services?
Cornelia de Lange syndrome is a genetic disease that could be misdiagnosed due to its rarity. Yvette DeVay, MHA, CPC, CPMA, CIC, CPC-I , reviews symptoms, procedural treatments, and ICD-10-CM coding for the condition.
Cognitive impairment ranges from mild to severe and can impact a person’s ability to perform everyday functions such as talking, remembering, and comprehending information. Debbie Jones, CPC, CCA , reviews CPT and ICD-10-CM coding, and care planning for patients living with cognitive impairment.
Cancer is the second most common form of death in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control. To accurately report CPT and ICD-10-CM codes for skin and breast cancer, coders need a thorough understanding of symptoms of malignancies and treatments used to prevent them from spreading. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Despite considerable opposition from hospital systems, on June 1, the Health Resources and Services Administration finalized its decision to delay the implementation of a 340B rule on drug ceiling prices and civil monetary penalties for manufacturers.
Hospital systems need to be watchful for CMS proposals that will impact payment for drugs and drug therapies in 2019 and beyond. Jugna Shah, MPH, reviews the potential implications of recent CMS actions, such as the publication of the 2019 IPPS proposed rule and the overhaul of 340B drug payment program.
Coders are on the front lines of claim submission and in a good position to foster compliance. Learn strategies to prevent fraud and abuse and encourage accurate documentation and billing within your outpatient facility. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
A recent report from the Office of Inspector General focuses on improper payments for specimen validity tests billed in combination with urine drug tests. Yvette DeVay, MHA, CPC, CPMA, CIC, CPC-I, reviews Medicare instructions and coding guidance for presumptive and definitive drug testing.
Pelvic congestion syndrome is a chronic medical condition affecting millions of women between the ages of 20 and 45. Lori-Lynne Webb CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC, ICD-10-CM/PCS , reviews symptoms of the condition and reporting using CPT and ICD-10-CM codes.
Do you question how your compensation and work responsibilities compare to those reported by coders across the country? To see how you stack up, review results from JustCoding’s 2017 Coder Salary Survey . Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
When planning to implement a coding auditing program, the type of reviews, focus areas, and review frequency must all be taken into consideration. Rose T. Dunn, MBA, RHIA, CPA/CGMA, FACHE, FHFMA, CHPS , details how to conduct an effective coding audit and ensure compliance with documentation requirements.
Q: A patient receives treatment for two ulcers, one on his foot and one on his hip. The physician performs a subcutaneous debridement to treat the foot ulcer and a muscle debridement to treat the hip ulcer. How would this be reported?
At the 2018 American Hospital Association (AHA) Annual Membership Meeting on Monday, May 7, CMS administrator Seema Verma focused on the agency’s efforts to reduce regulatory burdens and continued move from a fee-for-service to value-based system.
Every year, more than 30 million people in the United States are diagnosed with sinusitis, otherwise known as a sinus infection. Debbie Jones, CPC, CCA, reviews signs and symptoms of sinusitis and CPT coding for procedures used to treat the infection.
One in 12 adults suffer from alcohol abuse or dependence, and more than half of adults have a family history of alcoholism or problem drinking. Adrienne Commeree, CPC, CPMA, CCS, CEMC, CPIP, outlines ICD-10-CM rules for substance use, abuse, and dependence, and diagnosis coding for alcohol-related conditions.
While oral arguments in the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) lawsuit against CMS for its cuts to 340B drug payments in the 2018 OPPS final rule don’t begin until May 4, providers may want to take steps now to preserve their appeal rights if the AHA’s lawsuit is successful.
Q: If a patient is seen for a pressure ulcer on the foot related to diabetes, would you report a diabetes diagnosis code? If surgical debridement is performed and the patient receives treatment for their diabetes, can you charge for both an office visit and debridement?
Coders and clinical documentation improvement specialists play a key role in the success of quality payment programs such as MIPS. This article describes the financial impact that hierarchical condition category coding has on provider reimbursement and the coder’s role in ensuring complete, accurate, and timely documentation. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
Telehealth services continue to expand and claims for these services may already be under scrutiny by Medicare contractors. Debbie Mackaman, RHIA, CPCO, CCDS, writes about the differences between originating site and distant site services in addition to coding, billing, and reimbursement for telehealth services.
Coding for hydration and chemotherapy administration can be a daunting task for both beginner and experienced coders, who may not understand the hierarchy rules and gray areas in the CPT guidelines. Review correct coding for these services and how they fit into the hierarchy. Note: To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.
CMS held a listening session March 21 to gather input from stakeholders on potential updates to the E/M documentation guidelines. The current guidelines are considered outdated in light of medical advances and the advent of the electronic health record.
It’s estimated that more than half a million people in the U.S. are diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Debbie Jones, CPC, CCA , outlines symptoms and treatments for Crohn’s disease, as well as ICD-10-CM coding for the condition and associated complications.
Stress urinary incontinence is a common problem induced by minor physical stressors such as laughing, coughing, or sneezing. Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC , writes about CPT coding for procedures such as sling operations and laparoscopies, used to treat urinary stress incontinence.
In response to ongoing criticism from physicians and the government’s own advisory panel against the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health held a hearing Wednesday, March 21, to defend the administration’s implementation strategy for the new physician payment program.
Even experienced coding professionals find injection and infusion coding confusing because CPT guidelines for these services differ from the guidelines for most other services. Review the drug administration hierarchy and guidelines for reporting therapeutic, prophylactic, and diagnostic injections and infusions. Note : To access this free article, make sure you first register here if you do not have a paid subscription.