CPT 2010 Update: Laboratory & Pathology Coding

Stop using general codes for analyte-specific tests. Here’s why.
You have 15 new codes scattered throughout the pathology/laboratory CPT chapter, so we’ll help you jump start your 2010 claims with this how-to inventory. “From chemistry to surgical pathology, you’ll find new codes in CPT 2010 that you need to know,” says Peggy Slagle, CPC, billingcompliance coordinator […]

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Test Yourself: ICD-9 2010 for Ob-Gyn Coders

Is your ob-gyn practice using the new codes correctly? 3 quick questions say for sure.
This year, ICD-9 2010 brought new hyperplasia, mammogram, and fertility preservation codes. In some cases, these codes simply expanded on existing options, and it’sup to you to spot when you should report the new versus old alternatives. Dig in to […]

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Can a Sleep Study Code Describe an Awake Test?

Question: A sleep study was ordered for a patient diagnosed with hypersomnolence. The neurologistincluded a multiple wake test in the sleep study. What CPT code should I use for the multiple wake test?
Answer: You should use 95805 (Multiple sleep latency or maintenance of wakefulness testing, recording, analysis and interpretation of physiological measurements of sleep during […]

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CMS Will Offer New Modifier to Denote Admitting Physician on Claims

Pop the champagne cork & get ready for brand new inpatient coding rules.
With the changes to consult coding in 2010, it will be more important than ever to report hospital visits properly.
In the past, only the admitting physician reported initial hospital care codes (99221- 99223), and specialists who saw the patient separately often billed inpatient […]

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Urology CPT 2010: 3 New Codes, 2 Deletions Change Your Urodynamics Coding

Urodynamics income will go down by half, experts calculate.
You will have three new urodynamics codes to learn starting Jan. 1. CPT 2010 adds the following codes:
• 51727 — Complex cystometrogram (ie, calibrated electronic equipment); with urethral pressure profile studies (ie, urethral closure pressure profile), any technique
• 51728 — … with voiding pressure studies (ie, bladder voiding pressure), any technique
• 51729 — … […]

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Surgical Coding Mysteries: The Case of the Separate Mesh

Beware Separate Mesh Removal
Question: The surgeon performed the following: Made 10 cm supraumbilical transverse incision with 15-blade scalpel carried down through subcutaneous tissue using Bovie. Used combination electrocautery and blunted dissection to isolate area of scar tissue on patient’s right side. Noted sutures from previous umbilical hernia repair and mesh from right-lower abdominal hernia repair.
Excised […]

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Lab Fee G Codes Crosswalk to CPT

Question: Did you get any info at the CPT 2010 conference about the “Table of Drugs and the Appropriate Qualitative Screening, Confirmatory, and Quantitative Codes” on page 386 CPT? This is brand new, and I need to learn about it.
Answer: CMS created lab fee G codes to substitute for CPT codes due to concern […]

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Dawn in Chicago. And a new day for consult coding.

AMA Symposium Report: Low-Level Consult Reporting in 2010

Hey, Coding News readers! It’s your turn to weigh in on the consult controversy.
Question: What should you do for Medicare 2010 coding if an inpatient consult on a patient’s initial hospital day does not support 99221?
Answer: Kenneth Simon, MD, MBA, FACS, CMS, senior medical officer at the CPT symposium was very adamant that you […]

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Our Chicago reporter

Medicare’s Consult Rule Trickle Down Effect

And what it means for pediatric practices. A report from AMA in Chicago.
Although CPT clarifies the transfer of care definition, the fix came too late for Medicare, meaning your private payers may follow suit.
Continued Errors Result in E/M Boon
The Office of Inspector General found a high error rate on consultation codes. Different opinions on when […]

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ED Coding Question: Observation or Other E/M Code?

Question: A 42-year-old patient reports to the ED early on Tuesday morning for evaluation of uncontrollable shaking in her extremities and severe pain in her neck. The EP admits the patient to observation at 7 a.m. and orders blood tests and a CT scan — however, the shaking continues to worsen. The EP consults with a […]

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Neonatal Critical Care Coding: CPT 2010 Clarifies Resuscitation Guidance

Payers denying 99465-25? Here’s help straight from the AMA Symposium in Chicago.
Question: There’s a notation in the CPT 2009 manual that the neonatal critical care codes include delivery room resuscitation. Is this true?
Answer: No, a parenthetical note following 99465 (Delivery/birthing room resuscitation, provision of positive pressure ventilation and/or chest compressions in the presence of acute […]

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Pain Management Coding: Endoscopic Lumbar Nerve Decompression

Hint: Think ‘unlisted procedure.’

Question: One of our physicians is looking into “endoscopic lumbar spinal nerve decompression.” One of the medical device representatives indicated he could bill it like the lateral extraforaminal approach for lumbar decompression, but I haven’t found much information. What’s your advice?
Answer: Despite what you physician might have heard, your most appropriate choice […]

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CMS at AMA Chicago: We’re Reducing Consult Request Requirement

CMS auditors will look for 1 less thing in consult documentation.
With Medicare’s invalidation of consultation codes 99241-99255 in 2010, your ICD-9 codes better prove why two MDs are necessary on the same patient’s hospital care or the physician better specify why in his note.
Separate ICD-9 codes will help substantiate the medical necessity for providing consultative […]

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PQRI: No Coumadin Due to Fall Risk

Plus, experts at the AMA meeting in Chicago tell you what to do if you can’t get H1N1 vaccine for PQRI Measure 110 or other vaccine measures.
Question: My internist decided not to put a patient on Coumadin because the patient has a higher risk of falling than from having a stroke. Our group participates in […]

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Medicare Changes to 2010 CPT Inpatient Consultation Codes

Prevent 99251-99245 denials in 2010 with this checklist.
Multiple physicians using the same hospital codes sounds like a recipe for denials, but that’s what Medicare is instructing physician inpatient consultants and care coordinators to do.
Whether carriers will kick out these submissions as coordination of care or inpatient admit limiting admit edits is contractor specific, Charles […]

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2010 Tumor Excision Coding: Lesion Vs. Chunk Size

Straight from the AMA in Chicago — answers to your lesion excision coding questions for 2010.
Question: A thigh lesion measures 2 cm but requires a resection down to the subcutaneous layer of 4 cm. Which lesion excision code should I use?
Answer: “You should use the larger of the subcutaneous codes,” says Albert E. Bothe, Jr, […]

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