Eight key guidelines for ensuring proper coding. EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a summary of a presentation by Margaret Skurka during the 2017 American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) national convention in Los Angeles. Evaluation and management (E&M) documentation principles have been around a long time – since 1995, in…
Complexity of medical decision-making is key, but you can’t bill for something you didn’t do.This article was prompted by a Talk Ten Tuesdays listener’s question regarding his personal experience with the healthcare profession. He was evaluated in an emergency department (ED), never examined, but discovered a complete physical examination in…
High degrees of variation abound in areas of coder productivity, certification.In a recent poll, only 80 percent of respondents to a question of how many evaluation and management (E&M) encounters they could code per hour said that they spent at least some portion of their time at work performing that…
A Talk Ten Tuesdays listener weighs in on woefully insufficient documentation of a routine visit.EDITOR’S NOTE: During last Tuesday’s Talk Ten Tuesdays broadcast, a listener who prefers to be called “Robert” sent an email message to us describing his recent experience as an emergency department (ED) patient – after which…
I am a physician who writes and edits guidelines designed to assist in determining appropriate utilization of clinical resources. In a nutshell, the issue that pertains to today’s topic, medical necessity, is “unexplained clinical variation in care.”What I mean by that is the fact that patients with similar clinical features…
Medical necessity is the concept that healthcare services and supplies must be necessary and appropriate for the evaluation and management of a given disease, condition, illness, or injury. The care must be considered reasonable when judged against current medical standards of care. But clinicians know that guidelines are really not…
Medical necessity is an important issue. Just review the definition of medical necessity: “a legal doctrine, related to activities which may be justified as reasonable, necessary, and/or appropriate, based on evidence-based clinical standards of care.” So, what does that really mean? A few years ago, I was preparing to speak…