A few weeks ago, I introduced my new project; I’m affectionately referring to it as “A Question a Day Keeps the Queries Away.” It is going to be a curriculum for providers, clinical documentation improvement specialists (CDISs), and coders, taught in parallel. It takes me a while to research the…
The FY21 ICD-10-CM codes were released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on July 1, 2020.  The new and updated diagnosis codes are another part of the preparation for FY21 which begins on October 1, 2020. The final codes were very similar to the diagnosis codes that…
A Talk Ten Tuesdays listener recently sent me a question that encouraged a dialogue between us. The question was “can obesity class 3 be assigned the code for morbid obesity?” I had to do a little research, as I did not know the answer immediately. After reviewing the Index of…
Over the past few months, the folks at ICD10monitor have seen an increase in website searches regarding two specific ICD-10-CM codes: U07.1 (COVID-19) and F32.9 (Major depressive disorder, unspecified). Some say that this is a sign of the times, and that may be absolutely true, considering what has gone on…
According to the official coding guidelines, ICD-10 code U07.1 for COVID-19 may be reported under the following circumstances: As documented by the provider; Documentation of a positive COVID-19 test result; or A presumptive positive COVID-19 test result. “Presumptive” was the description given for cases that local testing initially indicates are…
ICD-10-CM codes are not robust enough to tell the patient story correctly.   I was having a terrible time preparing for my COVID-19 coding webinar, held on the afternoon of April 29, because the current ICD-10-CM codes under the current guidelines are not robust enough to tell the story correctly.…
The patient has COVID-19? How is the infection manifesting? You need a code for that detail. The rapidity with which our medical world is evolving is unbelievable. I know that aiming for optimal documentation is a worthy goal, but I recognize that right now, my clinical colleagues have more important…
An ICD10monitor article published in March 2015, which generated renewed interest in coding for racism, is updated in light of the coronavirus outbreak. EDITOR’S NOTE: The March 16, 2015, ICD10monitor article, “Is there a code for racism?” received an unprecedented number of searches this past week, prompting this update. London…
More changes are likely coming. As many of you have heard, there are major changes coming to evaluation and management (E&M) codes in 2021. The changes were finalized in the 2020 Physician Final Rule.  The good news is that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) gave us all…
More than 4,000 cases were coded in the 2019 contest focused on outpatient coding. ICD-10 is well-established, and we are already discussing and planning for ICD-11. However, where are the long-anticipated and promised increased accuracy and most definitive diagnoses? At least one coding contest found outpatient coding in 2019 had…