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Tips for Getting Maximum Reimbursements for Ulcer Claims

Tips for Getting Maximum Reimbursements for Ulcer Claims

Often, patients who are confined to beds for long periods of time develop pressure ulcers. They are painful and need to be treated as quickly as possible as infections can set up within them that can be life threatening when the patient is already in a weakened condition.

When a service is performed for a patient such as treatment of a pressure ulcer on an area of the body such as the lower back, the usual manner of treatment is to remove any devitalized tissue from the ulcer using a water jet and forceps. The area is then covered to allow it to not be rubbed on so the skin can begin to repair itself.

When you report this type of claim, read the description of the code carefully. You will notice the since the water jet is normally used, it is already bundled into the claim itself. If you report it additionally, you are setting yourself up for a total claim rejection.
You would want to report this claim as follows (make sure you know the measurements of the wound being treated):

* report 97597 (Removal of devitalized tissue from wound(s), selective debridement, without anesthesia (e.g., high-pressure water jet with/without suction, sharp selective debridement with scissors, scalpel and forceps), with or without topical application(s), wound assessment, and instruction(s) for ongoing care, may include use of a whirlpool, per session; total wound(s) surface area less than or equal to 20 square centimeters) for the debridement.
You will also want to link 707.03 (Decubitis ulcer; lower back) to 97597 for the pressure ulcer.

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