Walked Into a Lamppost? Hurt While Crocheting? Find Correct Billing Code Here.
New Medical Billing-Code Provides Precision; Nine Codes for Macaw MishapsÂ
Today, hospitals and doctors use a system of about 18,000 codes to describe medical services in bills they send to insurers, Anna Wilde Matthews reported in the Wall Street JournalÂ not too long ago. Â Apparently, that doesn’t allow for quite enough nuance.:
A new federally mandated version will expand the number to around 140,000â€”adding codes that describe precisely what bone was broken, or which artery is receiving a stent.
It will also have a code for recording that a patient’s injury occurred in a chicken coop. (See code.)
Indeed, health plans may never again wonder where a patient got hurt. There are codes for injuries in opera houses (see code), art galleries (see code), squash courts (see code) and nine locations in and around a mobile home (see codes), from the bathroom to the bedroom.
The federal agencies that developed the systemâ€”generally known as ICD-10, for International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revisionâ€”say the codes will provide a more exact and up-to-date accounting of diagnoses and hospital inpatient procedures, which could improve payment strategies and care guidelines. “It’s for accuracy of data and quality of care,” says Pat Brooks, senior technical adviser at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Â Billing experts who translate doctors’ work into codes are gearing up to start using the new system in two years.
Use this interactive database to find the code for what ails you!