Part 5 – New 2019 CPT Codes: Category III, Evaluation and Management, etc.
RHIA, CDIP, CCS, CCS‑P, CIRCC
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This is Part 5 of a five part series on the new 2019 CPT codes. In this series we will explore the CPT changes for FY 2019 and include examples to help the coder understand the new codes. For the remaining areas we will just briefly summarize the section. Due to the intricate nature of these sections in CPT, it is recommended that the coder read the entire section notes associated with the new codes.
Category III Codes
Category III CPT codes are released semi-annually, in January and July. There are 38 new, 29 deleted and 3 revised Category III codes. Review pages 764-789 of CPT book which indicate the new codes delineated by a red circle. Many of the Category III codes not discussed in the previous 4 parts of this series involve more diagnostic and testing procedures across all specialties. Of note is a new “Cellular and Gene Therapy” subsection. This subsection includes codes 0533T-0536T Continuous recording of movement disorder symptoms and 0537T-0542T Chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR-T) therapy.
Use Category III codes first before regular surgical CPT codes.
For radiology there are 10 new codes, 6 deleted, and 4 revised. There are 6 new ultrasound and ultrasound with elastography codes scattered throughout the chapter (76391, 76978-76979, 76981-76983). Transient elastography gives a quantitative one-dimensional (i.e. a line) image of tissue stiffness. It functions by vibrating the skin with a motor to create a passing distortion in the tissue (a shear wave), and imaging the motion of that distortion as it passes deeper into the body using a 1D ultrasound beam.
There are 4 new magnetic resonance imaging of breast codes, 77046-77049. These codes now denote if without contrast or without and with contrast materials including CAD to reflect current practice. Old codes 77058,77059 have been deleted.
For this section there are 29 new codes, 13 deleted, and 17 revised Medicine CPT Codes.
1 new code 93264, is for remote monitoring of wireless pulmonary artery pressure sensor.
There are 7 new or revised neurostimulator monitoring codes. There is a new “Adaptive Behaviour Services – Assessments – Treatment” subsections and other CNS testing.
Laboratory and Pathology
There are 95 new codes, 5 deleted and 15 revised codes. Most of the new codes and revisions involve molecular pathology, which is a growing field. Since many of these codes are inputting in the pathology or laboratory departments via chargemaster, the hospital will want to be sure the chargemaster is up to date and personnel in these departments are aware of the updates.
Evaluation and Management
For E&M there are 6 new codes, and 5 revised codes. The subsection for “Interprofessional Telephone/Internet/Electronic Health Record Consultations” updated with “Electronic Health Record” along with the notes.
“Electronic Health Record” was added to codes 99446-99449 for interprofessional telephone/internet/electronic health record assessment and management service.
The below two new codes were created to reflect the growing use of the online electronic health record to interact with patients.
- 99451 Interprofessional telephone/internet/electronic health record assessment and management service provided by a consultative physician, including a written report to the patient’s treating /requesting physician or other qualified healthcare professional, 5 minutes or more of medical consultative time
- 99452 Interprofessional telephone/internet/electronic health record referral services provided by a treating /requesting physician or other qualified healthcare professional, 30 minutes
Report 16-30 min of a service day for time spent preparing for the referral and/or communicating with
the patient using code 99452. If over 30 minutes, use prolonged services codes.
There is a new subsection for “Digitally Stored Data Services/Remote Physiologic Monitoring.” Report remote monitoring services such as weight, blood pressure, pulse oximetry during a 30 day period. The device must be a medical device as defined by the FDA.
- 99453 Remote monitoring of physiologic parameter(s) (eg, weight, blood pressure, pulse oximetry, respiratory flow rate), initial, set-up and patient education on use of equipment
(Do not report more than once per episode of care or for monitoring under 16 days
- 99454 Device(s) supply with daily recording(s) or programmed alert(s) transmission, each 30 days.
(Do not report for monitoring under 16 days or if monitoring covered under another code)
▲ 99091 Collection and interpretation of physiologic data code was updated with adding “each 30 days” so this code can only be reported once per 30 days
There is another new subsection “Remote Physiologic Monitoring Treatment Management Services” with notes.
- 99457 Remote physiological monitoring treatment management services, 20 minutes or more of clinical staff/physician/other qualified health care professional time in a calendar month requiring interactive communications with the patient/caregiver during the month
This code is used when QHCP use the results of remote physiological monitoring to manage a patient under a specific treatment plan. It is also used when it does not meet requirements to report a more specific service. (Report once per 30 days regardless of the number of parameters monitored.
(Do not report 99457 with 99091)
One new code was created under the Chronic Care Management Services.
99491 Chronic care management services, provided personally by a physician or other QHCP at least 30 minutes of physician/QHCP time, per calendar month, with the following required elements:
- Multiple (2 or more) chronic conditions expected to last at least 12 months or death
- Chronic conditions place patient at risk of death, acute exacerbation or decline
- Comprehensive care plan established, implemented, revised or monitored
More E&M information in general:
Good news is CMS is delaying implementation of E/M payment changes. CMS will collapse payment rates for E/M office visits levels 2 through 4 rather than levels 2 through 5 beginning in 2021. CMS will keep a separate payment rate for level 5 visits to account for time and care associated with complex patients.
CMS has also eliminated the requirement to document the medical necessity of a home visit in lieu of an office visit.
For established patients history and exam, when relevant information is already contained in the medical record, practitioners may choose to focus their documentation on what has changed since the last visit, or on pertinent items that have not changed, and need not re-record the defined list of required elements if there is evidence that the practitioner reviewed the previous information and updated it as needed.
Additionally, CMS is clarifying that for new and established patients chief complaint and history, practitioners need not re-enter in the medical record information that has already been entered by ancillary staff or the beneficiary. The practitioner may simply indicate in the medical record that he or she reviewed and verified this information.
Beginning in CY 2021, CMS will implement payment, coding, and additional documentation changes for E/M office/outpatient visits, specifically:
- Single rates for levels 2 through 4 for established and new patients, maintaining the payment rates for E/M office/outpatient visit level 5 in order to better account for the care and needs of complex patients;
- Add-on codes for level 2-4 visits that describe the additional resources inherent in visits for primary care and particular kinds of non-procedural specialized medical care;
- A new “extended visit” add-on code for level 2 through 4 visits to account for the additional resources required when practitioners need to spend additional time with patients.
- For level 2 through 5 visits, choice to document using the current framework, MDM or time;
- When time is used to document, practitioners will document the medical necessity of the visit and that the billing practitioner personally spent the required amount of time face-to-face with the beneficiary (typical CPT time for code reported, plus any extended/prolonged time).
This concludes our five part series on new CPT codes for FY 2019! Happy Coding!
The information contained in this post is valid at the time of posting. Viewers are encouraged to research subsequent official guidance in the areas associated with the topic as they can change rapidly.
Why are so many AKI records being denied? It’s hard to give one answer for why so many AKI records are being denied lately, but most appear to be due to the multiple sets of criteria available for use in determining if a patient has AKI, as well as physician documentation. As stated in Part 3 of this series, there are three main criteria/classifications used to diagnose AKI.
In previous parts of this series we looked at the definitions of AKI/ARF, causes, coding and sequencing, and the common clinical indicators that patients present with that are diagnosed with this condition. In Part 4, we will look at the documentation that should be present to report the diagnosis without fear of denial, as well as when a query is needed to clarify the diagnosis.
If the facility does a COVID-19 test, and test is negative, do I need a diagnosis code. The answer is yes, you will report a Z-code. The Z-code depends on the record documentation and circumstances of testing. For any patient receiving a COVID-19 test, if negative, there MUST e a Z-code to describe why the test was taken. (Test negative for COVID-19 and MD does not override negative results).
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As discussed in Part 1 of this series, AKI/ARF is a common diagnosis that coders see daily. In Part 2, we are going to focus on the different types/specificity of AKI/ARF. We’ll learn what they mean, as well as how to code the diagnosis.
This is part 1 in a series focused on coding of acute kidney injury (AKI) and/or acute renal failure (ARF). AKI/ARF is reported often, but is also one of the most common diagnosis found in denials.
With the proliferation of COVID-19 cases, we thought we would put together a quick reference listing of some of the common scenarios that coders have asked about. As with all coding, coders should follow Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting and the COVD-19 Frequently Asked Questions document by the AHA.
Effective March 1, Medicare will pay physicians for telehealth services at the same rate as in-person visits for all diagnoses, not just services related to COVID-19. This great for providers whose patients are reluctant to visit the office.
The biggest reasons why some hospital systems are moving to single path coding is to eliminate duplicative processes and to optimize productivity. In addition, costs are reduced when only one coder “touches” the record and completes both types of coding.
Effective with 4/1/2020 discharges, ICD-10-CM code U07.0 is used to report vaping -related disorders. ICD-10-CM code U07.0 (vaping related disorder) should be used when documentation supports that the patient has a lung-related disorder from vaping. This code is found in the new ICD-10-CM Chapter 22. U07.0 will be in listed in the ICD-10-CM manual under a new section: Provisional assignment of new disease of uncertain etiology or emergency use.
The US government and public-health officials are urging consumers to utilize telemedicine for remote treatment, fill prescriptions and get medical attention during the new coronavirus pandemic. The goal is to keep people with symptoms at home and to practice social distancing if their condition doesn’t warrant more intensive hospital care.
Coronavirus: Tips for working from home. Companies around the world have told their employees to stay home and work remotely. Whether you’re a new to this concept or a work from home veteran, here’s some tips to staying productive from our #HIAfamily.
This is the final part of a three part series in which we address how coders can better interact with Clinical Documentation Improvement (CDI) professionals. In this part, we provide an actual example of an effective communication response to CDI.
This is part two of a three part series in which we address how coders can better interact with Clinical Documentation Improvement (CDI) professionals. In this part, we discuss mismatches and how to best go about resolving them. In part three we will provide a case example of best practice interaction.
This is part one of a three part series in which we address how coders can better interact with Clinical Documentation Improvement (CDI) professionals. Many times these departments are separate and the remote environment makes it difficult to interact efficiently between the two departments. In part one, we will discuss the history and objectives of CDI so the coder has a better understanding of CDI’s role.
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For Part 5 of this 5-part series, we will look at Chapter 4 within ICD-10-CM—E00-E89—Endocrine, Nutritional, and Metabolic Diseases. There is no possible way to include every guideline or coding reference for this chapter, but here are some of the most common issues.
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For Part 2 of this 5-part series, we will look at Chapter 1 within ICD-10-CM—A00-B99—Certain Infectious and Parasitic Diseases. There is no possible way to include every guideline or coding reference for this chapter, but here are some of the most common issues.
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The HIM world has been buzzing recently with discussion of “Social Determinants of Health” and coded data. What does this mean for coders and the HIM field?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is in process of developing a new code for the COVID-19 (coronavirus) that will be released October 1, 2020. In the meantime, the CDC has provided advice on coding the COVID-19 coronavirus.
We’re finally at the #1 most common DRG with recommendations by HIA for 2019. Just to recap, HIA reviewed over 50,000 inpatient records in 2019. Most have probably already guessed what the correct DRG would be with the most recommendations. There are just some diagnoses and DRG’s that will always be a thorn in the side for coders. #1 DRG with the most recommendations during HIA reviews : DRG 871—Septicemia or severe sepsis w/o mechanical ventilation >96 hours with MCC
We’re now at the second most common DRG with recommendations by HIA for 2019. Just to recap, HIA reviewed over 50,000 inpatient records in 2019. We are counting down to # 1. #2 DRG with the most recommendations during HIA reviews: DRG 872—Septicemia or severe sepsis w/o mechanical ventilation >96 hours w/o MCC.
In 2019, HIA reviewed over 50,000 inpatient records. Wow! That is a lot of records. Even with this large number of records, the DRG’s with recommendations are still the ones that coders typically see during audits. #3 DRG 190—Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with MCC.
In 2019, HIA reviewed over 50,000 inpatient records. Wow! That is a lot of records. Even with this large number of records, the DRG’s with recommendations are still the ones that coders typically see during audits. #4 is DRG 193—Simple pneumonia & pleurisy with MCC.
In 2019, HIA reviewed over 50,000 inpatient records. Wow! That is a lot of records. Even with this large number of records, the DRG’s with recommendations are still the ones that coders typically see during audits. #5 DRG with the most recommendations during HIA reviews : DRG 853—Infectious & Parasitic diseases with O.R. procedure with MCC