RSSAll Entries in the "Coding" Category

Guest Post: Using coding, CDI to transform hospitals’ revenue integrity, part 2

Want to write for ACDIS? Send us your ideas!

Want to write for ACDIS? Send us your ideas!

by Amber Sterling, RN, BSN, CCDS, and Jana Armstrong, RHIA, CPC

Seven lessons learned in physician education

The following lessons were learned at KRMC and proved to be instrumental in improving communication between physicians, CDI staff, and coders: [more]

Q&A: Reporting right-sided heart

SharmeBrodie_May2017

Sharme Brodie RN, CCDS, answered this week’s CDI question.

Q: If you have an acute exacerbation of a chronic right heart failure (CHF) with a preserved ejection fraction (EF)— above 55%—can you code it as heart failure with preserved EF? All the clinical symptoms are exemplifying right failure. For example, ascites, pronounced neck vein distension, swelling of ankles and feet, etc.

A: ICD-10-CM has codes associated with the documentation of right-sided failure and for left-sided failure. Each ventricle supplies different portions of the circulation, so heart failure can be described as either right or left depending on the symptoms. When the right ventricle fails, we call it right-heart failure. In this case, fluid backs up into the peripheral circulation, into the legs, head, and the liver. Right-sided or right ventricular (RV) heart failure usually occurs as a result of left-sided failure. [more]

Guest Post: Using coding, CDI to transform hospitals’ revenue integrity, part 1

Want to write for ACDIS? Send us your ideas!

Want to write for ACDIS? Send us your ideas!

by Amber Sterling, RN, BSN, CCDS, and Jana Armstrong, RHIA, CPC

Most healthcare systems already have a proven process in place to monitor revenue integrity and ensure correct reimbursement. More than 60% of hospital executives believe revenue integrity is essential to their organization’s financial stability and sustainability, according to a survey by Craneware, Inc.

But does revenue integrity extend beyond charge masters and billing? Kalispell Regional Medical Center (KRMC), one of the “100 Great Community Hospital” according to Becker’s Hospital review, says yes.

For KRMC, revenue integrity focuses on three operational pillars: clinical coding, CDI, and physician education. At KRMC and many other health systems, revenue integrity is a three-legged stool: [more]

Guest Post: New ICD-10-CM/PCS codes up the ante in coding compliance, part 1: Myocardial infarction

James S. Kennedy, MD, CCS, CDIP

by James S. Kennedy, MD, CCS, CDIP

Editor’s note: With the fiscal year 2018 ICD-10-CM/PCS codes released, Kennedy unpacked some of the compliance pitfalls and opportunities awaiting CDI and coding professionals when these new codes are implemented on October 1. Some of these issues may be addressed in the 2018 ICD-10-CM Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting or the American Hospital Association’s Coding Clinic, Fourth Quarter, 2017, so be sure to compare Kennedy’s opinions with these documents. This article is part one in a three-part series. Return to the blog next week for the next installment! [more]

Q&A: Credentialing for outpatient CDI

Have CDI questions?

Have CDI questions?

Q: I’ve heard lately that outpatient CDI specialists are less likely to be registered nurses. Is there a reason there may be more coders in this arena?

A: While many outpatient CDI specialists do hold an RN credential, there are good reasons for having coders fill the roll, says Allen Frady, RN, BSN, CCDS, CCS, CDI education specialist for HCPro in Middleton, Massachusetts.

“There are a lot of very specific documentation requirements for evaluation and management (E/M), observation codes, interventional radiology, etc., which RN CDI specialists don’t typically learn,” he says. Additionally, coders may already be comfortable working in a physician practice setting and have a familiarity with hierarchical condition categories (HCC). [more]

Guest post: 2018 ICD-10 codes—when the heart needs a helping hand

McCall_Shannon_darkbg

Shannon E. McCall, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P, CPC, CPC-I, CEMC, CRC, CCDS

by Shannon E. McCall, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P, CPC, CPC-I, CEMC, CRC, CCDS

Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a commonly diagnosed condition where the ventricles or the lower chambers of the heart do not work effectively. The heart serves as a pump to get blood in and then out of the heart to circulate to the rest of the body. When any type of pump doesn’t work efficiently backups can occur.

The most common form of CHF is left ventricular failure, however left-sided failure can also lead to right ventricular failure as a ripple effect. There are two common types of CHF, one whereby the ventricle cannot contract normally, known as systolic heart failure, and one where the ventricle cannot relax normally due to stiffness, known as diastolic failure. Some patients may have a combination of both systolic and diastolic failure.

The causes of heart failure include hypertension, coronary artery disease, and valvular diseases, as well as cardiomyopathies. [more]

Guest Post: Communication eases challenges of fiscal year 2018 code changes

coding changes

On October 1, over 800 code changes take effect!

by Crystal Stalter, CDIP, CCS-P, CPC

It’s that time of year again—time to wonder just how the 2018 IPPS final rule will affect CDI and coding efforts.

The 2018 IPPS final rule includes more than 800 ICD-10-PCS changes. Previously recognized operating room codes have become non-operating room codes, affecting DRG assignment, changing surgical DRGs to medical DRGs, and thus affecting reimbursement. Some diagnoses are gaining new definitions and explanations that will result in new ICD-10-CM code assignments and shift DRGs as well.

[more]

Book excerpt: Defining clinical documentation and coding standards in the revenue cycle, integrating real-time auditing, part 2

Lamkin_Elizabeth

by Elizabeth Lamkin, MHA, ACHE

by Elizabeth Lamkin, MHA, ACHE

To reinforce formal documentation education provided to physicians and staff, open chart auditing and real-time education is needed. Effective facilities typically have a CDI program staffed with trained professionals to concurrently audit every open chart and query providers to obtain clarifications and additional documentation when needed.

Placing CDI staff on the clinical units to audit chart documentation in real time and personally interact with physicians and other clinical staff, often helps with education effectiveness as well. The CDI specialist can query the physician to explain why the documentation does not meet criteria or does not really tell the story of the patient’s condition.

[more]

Guest Post, Part 2: Where do we stand with clinical validation?

clinical validation poll(1)

According to an ACDIS poll, 70% conduct clinical validation reviews.

By Richard Pinson, MD, FACP, CCS, and Cynthia Tang, RHIA, CCS

At the 2017 ACDIS conference in May, Nelly Leon Chisen, RHIA, director of coding and classification, the executive editor of the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Coding Clinic provided clarification on the new Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting, I.A.19 titled “Code Assignment and Clinical Criteria.” (Read last week’s post here.) At the meeting, Nelly explained the Guidelines intended to reaffirm long-standing advice that coding must be based on provider documentation, essentially that:

  • Only the physician, or other qualified healthcare practitioner legally accountable for establishing the patient’s diagnosis, can “diagnose” the patient.
  • Clinical information published in Coding Clinic does not constitute clinical criteria for establishing a diagnosis, substitute for the provider’s clinical judgement, or eliminate the need for provider documentation regarding the clinical significance of a patient’s medical condition.

[more]

Summer reading: Defining documentation and coding standards in the revenue cycle, part 1

Lamkin_Elizabeth

Elizabeth Lamkin, MHA, ACHE

by Elizabeth Lamkin, MHA, ACHE

Accurate clinical documentation is the bedrock of the legal medical record, billing, and coding. It is also the most complex and vulnerable part of revenue cycle because independent providers must document according to intricate and sometimes vague rules. A facility’s revenue cycle plan should define the necessary education on documentation, when and how this education will be delivered, and how compliance with education will be reported.

It is difficult to hold physicians and other medical staff accountable for applying the rules if they are not educated on what the most current rules require. Physician engagement increases if education includes why documentation is so important and why it must be done correctly while the patient is still in the hospital. Physicians normally do not receive formal education or training on documentation to meet regulatory and coding criteria in their training programs or through continuing education; therefore, it is up to the hospital to stay current on regulations and documentation rules and to provide training to physicians.

[more]