Medical Billing Blog: Section - Medical Coding

Archive of all Articles in the Medical Coding Section

This is the archive containing links to all articles written in the Medical Coding section of our blog.

Click any of the article links below to read the entire article or browse another section to the right to read articles on another subject.

Recent Implementation of a New Set of COVID-19 Dataset Codes

Information from EHR Intelligence… “There will now be over 150 new LOINC dataset codes that are linked to COVID-19. Health IT professionals at Regenstrief Institute have added new COVID-19 standardized codes for laboratory testing and clinical observations to the Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC) dataset. LOINC aims to streamline health data standardization for more efficient EHR use and health data exchange, which is key when a pandemic such as COVID-19 occurs. As one of the most widely-used code systems, LOINC seeks to provide standardization in medical test result identification, observations, and a variety of other clinical measures. LOINC promotes interoperability with new terms for tests and clinical observations

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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How Do We Improve Data Collection and Exchange Following COVID-19?

How Do We Improve Data Collection and Exchange Following COVID-19? Christopher Jason answers this question in an article at EHR Intelligence.   Reducing measurement burden, addressing the lag in reporting data quality, and improving data standardization will be key to boosting clinical quality measurement, according to a recent journal article published in JAMA Network. “There is a lack of information that would help clinicians improve care delivery in the moment and learn for the future,” J. Matthew Austin, PhD, and Allen Kachalia, MD, wrote in the article. “This situation highlights how the current approach to quality and safety measurement remains too labor intensive, contains significant data lags, and lacks sufficient

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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Is the COVID-19 Pandemic Unraveling HIPAA Rules?

Art Gross poses a great question over at Health IT Answers… Is COVID-19 unraveling HIPPA?   “The Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act (HIPAA) was created in 1996 to protect patients and their privacy, and if you are in healthcare, you already know this and are familiar with what it means. With a goal to ensure that people could maintain health insurance between jobs, thus the “Portability” part of the name; along with a second, and critical goal, to address the “Accountability” of insurance to protect the confidentiality part of patient information and data. This meant mandating standards of privacy for electrotonic protected health information (PHI) and data that was

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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Poor Payer Reimbursements are Effecting Practices During COVID-19

HealthIT Answers posted an interesting article on how the pandemic is effecting providers. “Most physicians who have been practicing for a few decades remember the days when private payer reimbursements dwarfed Medicare reimbursements. That dynamic has long since flipped, starting with the 2008 recession. Reimbursements have been flat or have lost value from inflation, while practice costs have seen double-digit increases. Meanwhile, hospitals and insurance-owned health networks have seen reimbursements increase to 300% or more of Medicare in some cases, whereas it’s not uncommon for private practices to receive rates far below Medicare standards. Many practices have seen their volumes decrease from 30% to up to 90%, and a significant

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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EHR and Interoperability Must Evolve to Integrate Genomic Data

“As genomic data becomes more prevalent and complex, EHRs must adapt and evolve to provide better patient care, according to a statement released by the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG). Genetic and genomic testing has become an important tool to enhance clinical decision-making and ultimately precision medicine. However, health IT, especially the EHR, are not able to integrate and interpret this data, ACMG said. In order to integrate genomic information into EHRs, amplifying patient autonomy, access, genetic literacy, privacy and protection, transferability of data, and assigning a data set must occur. “The electronic health record serves as a powerful interactive tool in improving the healthcare of patients

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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6 Tips to Keep Your Finances Afloat During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Medscape offers 6 Tips to Keep Your Finances Afloat During the COVID-19 Pandemic…   1. Cut back on expenses Some household spending has naturally tapered off for many families, as social distancing restrictions reduce spending on eating out, travel, and other leisure activities. But this is also an opportunity to look for other ways to reduce spending. Look through your credit card bills to see whether there are recurring payments you can cut, such as a payment to a gym that’s temporarily closed or a monthly subscription box that you don’t need… 2. Take advantage of regulatory changes Although many physicians won’t qualify for direct payments via the Coronavirus Aid

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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Better Data Collection is Key to Addressing EHR and Claims Data Discordance

“There is a moderate agreement between EHR data and Medicare Part D (MPD) claims data for the receipt of oral anticancer agents, which are a popular treatment option for cancer patients, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open. The study, conducted by the Texas Cancer Registry and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC), found that 73.8 percent of the EHR data and MPD claims data overlapped, with 176 data sets shown in both and 123 sets not shown for either. Oral anticancer agents are becoming more popular and equally as expensive, leaving policymakers to uncover data about how patients use them, which then allows for

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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EMR Documentation Issues During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Physician News posted a great article discussing EMR documentation issues during the pandemic. As hospitals are overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients and staff are stretched to their limits, electronic medical record (EMR) documentation may suffer as a result of rushed, less detailed and error-prone entries. EMR workarounds are also expected to flourish. In the current medical malpractice climate where greater scrutiny can be placed on the EMR and audit trail over the medicine itself, it is very important to maintain an accurate chart. There are steps that can be taken now to prepare for anticipated documentation issues related to care rendered during the COVID-19 pandemic. The most important recommendation is to

By: Melissa Clark, CCS-P, RT - CEO
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