“Separate procedure” may not mean what you think. Many procedural codes in the CPT® Book are designated as “separate procedures.” However, the common misinterpretation of this is that coders can report such codes as such in every case. Not true. First, you must consider: Were there other procedures performed during…
Coders are encouraged to query if not sure.The ratio of observed-to-expected deaths is considered a measure of hospital quality. Recording accurate metrics depends on capturing all relevant diagnoses to optimize the expected mortality denominator. The explanatory variables groupings of mortality modeling for institutions include both definitive diagnoses and signs/symptoms. A…
Coders must ensure documentation supports the service, either moderate sedation or MAC. Coding moderate sedation (or conscious sedation) and monitored anesthesia care (MAC) is not difficult; however, distinguishing what the services provided are and deciphering conflicted information about which physicians can report what codes can be confusing for some coders…
Address documentation and coding issues up front, rather than correct them later. Coders have had many challenges throughout the years.  When I started in the industry, we did not submit claims electronically; they were submitted on paper and we used an IBM Selectric Typewriter to complete what was then the…
With good collaboration and the right team members, continual improvements are attainable.Recently I have been engaged in a project of continual improvement in our clinics, and as chief compliance officer, I am continually looking for ways we can stay compliant, deliver excellent healthcare, and fix revenue leaks.We audit our physicians…
Ten strategies for avoiding burnout are provided by the author. On any given day, if you walked into my home office, you might think you were in a spa. The walls are painted a soothing aqua color (at least, I think it’s soothing), a scent diffuser releases a pleasant tea…
Coding leadership routinely benefits from learning team members' strengths and weaknesses and adjusting plans to match. I began working with Novant Health in 2011, when I used the phrase “best of the best” for my team. This was our department’s vision for our future, and it is a standard we…
Leaving 2017 and moving into 2018, three major issues await coders—issues that could be opportunities.As we now come to the end of another year and look towards the next, what are the big issues for coding professionals? I often think about the new Official Coding & Reporting Guidelines and the…
Are you familiar with IBM’s supercomputer Watson? IBM’s stated aspiration is to make it “the world’s best diagnostician,” because it can store way more medical information than a human doctor and makes decisions based on evidence, free of cognitive biases. It is consistent, and, according to the company, “given the…
I chose the titular subject for this article because many of us have been focusing on ICD-10-CM and PCS – and while CM is used by both inpatient and outpatient coders, we may have lost sight of CPT and HCPCS.CPT® and HCPCS education is as important as ICD-10, especially considering the…
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