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How to Handle Medical Billing Code Changes

How to Handle Medical Billing Code Changes

Medical billing codes undergo changes on a yearly basis. When they become outdated, insurance companies cannot accept them any more. Your claims will therefore be denied because of the codes.

There are few ways in which you can keep up with changes in medical billing codes. The first thing that you can do to keep updated codes is to use Current Procedural Terminology Code Books. These are billing code books that have an explanation for each medical billing code. They list the codes alphabetically and by number.

The codes found in CPT books are updated annually and the changes may be minimal at times, while at other times they may have a lot of changes. The books also contain a list of modifiers, which indicate that a service was changed in a certain way from the stated current procedural terminology without changing the definition. By ensuring that you have these books on a yearly basis, you will be able to keep up with any billing code changes that have taken place.

You can also handle code changes by using the code book known as the international classification of diseases, ninth revision clinical modification (ICD9). This is a coding system that groups related disease procedures and entities for the reason of reporting statistical information. ICD9 books also list diagnoses both numerically and alphabetically and the codes are updated on a yearly basis. Right now they have introduced ICD-10 with changes.

The other way to handle code changes is to purchase medical coding software, which is a good alternative to code referencing books, which you need to update on a regular basis. The other benefit that medical billing software offers is that you do not need to consult a number of books in order to code a medical procedure correctly. Electronic medical software eliminates the problem and in addition to this, it provides online searching capabilities that you cannot achieve with reference books.

Medical office software is the best method that you can use to handle code changes because it will provide you with more accuracy. Medical offices that utilize online coding and billing software will find it easier to transition from the old codes to the new codes because the software will handle much of the work. By keeping up with code changes in this way, your billing practice will improve the quality of care that you deliver.


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