News

E&M code changes are expected to become effective in 2021. The American Medical Association (AMA) released on March 8 the summary of panel actions that took place at the February 2019 CPT® panel meeting. The exact wording is not considered to be finalized until just prior to the release of…
Valerie Watzlaf, PhD returns for a second appearance tomorrow during the live broadcast. Valerie J. Watzlaf, PhD, MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA, recently elected American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) President/Chair of the group’s 2019 Board of Directors, will be the special guest today on Talk Ten Tuesdays, according to Chuck Buck,…
Confusion persists in understanding the definition of the two visits. We created a lot of buzz the past two weeks on our Talk Ten Tuesday broadcast an article on new versus established patient visits: so much, in fact, it was hard to keep up with all the email feedback, which…
Computer-assisted coding depends on the accuracy of the input. There is considerable interest in computer-assisted coding or “CAC.” The proponents say it will reduce costs, coding backlogs and discharged not final billed claims.  There are several companies in this space, the largest being 3M with more than $30 billion in…
These conditions should be on the radar for coding and clinical documentation integrity. There has been much discussion about healthcare expenses in recent months. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is focusing on value-based purchasing (VBP), and payors are focused on reducing costs through Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCCs)…
Pursuing revenue cycle roles could be an ideal path for HIM professionals. Often, we see patient financial services staff progress to leadership positions in the revenue cycle. When I have the opportunity to serve in such positions, I always wonder why we don’t see more health information professionals in these…
Prime Healthcare lawsuit reveals a huge risk for unethical practice. A few weeks ago, Dr. Ronald Hirsch brought to my attention (as is his custom) a False Claims Act complaint and settlement involving Prime Healthcare Services, a for-profit healthcare system. By way of background, last August, the U.S. Department of…
Coding of chronic conditions: Part 2  This article addresses concerns regarding the coding of chronic conditions during a patient’s journey. The truth of the matter is that depending on your role in the coding process, your experience coding chronic conditions can differ greatly from that of others. As indicated in…