Clear Up Coverage Questions for Medicare’s Hepatitis B Screening

Fri, May 17, 2019

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Medicare coverage of hepatitis B screening

The percentage of people who have hepatitis B but don’t know it could be as high as 67 percent, and the opioid epidemic is fueling an increase in infections, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). That’s one reason screening is so important. Medicare’s coverage rules for hepatitis B screening are specific, though, so let’s nail down the professional coding rules for screening of non-pregnant patients.

Know the Beneficiaries Involved and Frequency Limits

The rules we’re discussing here are from Continue reading...

So You Want to Know About Free CEUs From TCI SuperCoder …

Tue, May 14, 2019

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A lot of questions have been coming in to us lately about CEUs. Check out this FAQ to get answers about keeping your credential current using TCI SuperCoder resources.

Does TCI SuperCoder Offer Free CEUs?

Yes, TCI SuperCoder offers at least six free educational webinars per year. If you attend a live webinar, you can earn one AAPC-approved CEU (Continuing Education Unit). In some cases, the webinar may offer specialty CEUs, so be sure to check which credits are available from an individual webinar.

Everyone is welcome to attend a free live webinar to earn a CEU. (Please note that “live” means at the …

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5 Things to Know About K57.- for Diverticular Disease of Intestine

Fri, May 10, 2019

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ICD-10 coding for diverticulosis and diverticulitis

ICD-10-CM provides more than 20 codes for diverticular disease of the intestine, so you know attention to detail is the key to success! Here are five areas to watch to improve your coding accuracy.

1. Eat Your Wheaties Before You Tackle Documentation

ICD-10-CM includes a lot of codes for diverticular disease under K57.-, so you’ve got to be ready to spend some energy on analyzing the documentation to choose the correct code. (And in case “eat your Wheaties” isn’t in your vocabulary, it means power up before you take on a challenge!)

Here are the main pointers to check for to choose …

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Bulk Up Your Global Surgical Package Knowledge for Cleaner Claims

Mon, May 6, 2019

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Medicare global surgical package rules

Let’s take Medicare’s list of services included in global surgery payment up a notch. If you remember each added tip below, you’ll be more likely to avoid reporting both too many and too few codes.

Read This Booklet to Dive Deeper

The source of the straight-from-Medicare bullet points quoted below is Medicare’s Global Surgery Booklet. As a quick refresher, the global surgical package includes required services typically furnished by a surgeon (or same-specialty physician in the same group) before, during, and after a procedure. The Medicare payment for a surgical code covers all of those typical pre-, intra-, …

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Medicare Helper: Don’t Let DOS Be the Downfall for Your Claims

Thu, May 2, 2019

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select the correct DOS for claims

Determining date of service (DOS) can be harder than it seems. Once you dive into the world of professional/technical components, monitoring services, and other non-obvious DOS possibilities, things get complicated fast. You can use the Medicare rules below as a starting point.

Apply Different Dates for Radiology Components

For many radiology codes, the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) assigns a professional component and a technical component. That’s because it is not unusual for a patient to have an imaging service performed by a technician in one location and then for a radiologist who doesn’…

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Tick-Tock: Understand Why Time Matters for E/M Coding

Mon, Apr 22, 2019

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understand time for E/M coding success

For E/M, there has been a lot of attention on how the role of time will change in 2021. But what about right now? After this skill sharpener on time in the AMA CPT® E/M guidelines, you’ll have a better understanding of time’s current role in E/M coding.

Where to Find AMA CPT® E/M Guidelines

The CPT® code set includes a set of E/M Services Guidelines that give you important information about applying the codes in the E/M section.

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Your Secret Decoder for ICD-10-CM Notes Has Arrived!

Thu, Apr 18, 2019

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I’ve been working with ICD-10-CM notes recently, like Excludes1 and “code first.” One thing coders have to know about those notes is that they come with qualifiers. Let’s look at some of the not-so-obvious meanings of these ICD-10-CM notes.

Excludes1 Means “NOT CODED HERE!” Unless …

ICD-10-CM Excludes1 notes originally came with the explanation that you should never report the excluded code at the same time as the code above the note. The idea was that the two conditions in the two codes could never occur together. But life and coding aren’t always that simple.

In practice, coders found that in some cases when an …

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Before You Pick a Pain Code, You Need to Know These Official Guidelines

Mon, Apr 15, 2019

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ICD-10-CM is picky about pain coding, and it’s no wonder considering all the possible variations. Fortunately you can turn to the 2019 ICD-10-CM Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting (OGs) to keep your coding skills sharp. Today we’ll take a look at some of these pain pointers.

Walk a Fine Line for Pain Related to Psychological Factors

Pain related to psychological factors has one code. Pain exclusively related to psychological factors has another …

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Coding Snapshot: 4 Answers to Ace Major Joint Arthrocentesis

Thu, Apr 11, 2019

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coding for arthrocentesis

Time for an arthrocentesis refresher! Today we’re digging into the details of 20610 and 20611 with four questions and answers.

1. What Are the Major Components of These Codes?

Let’s start by working our way through the code descriptors:

  • 20610 (Arthrocentesis, aspiration and/or injection, major joint or bursa (eg, shoulder, hip, knee, subacromial bursa); without ultrasound guidance)
  • 20611 (… with ultrasound guidance, with permanent recording and reporting).

Both descriptors start by stating the codes represent arthrocentesis, which is puncture and aspiration of a joint, according to Dorland’s Illustrated Medical Dictionary. …

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