Health Information Management

Avoid encoder traps to ensure coding compliance

Briefings on APCs, September 1, 2008

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Encoders are among the most valuable coding resources on the market, but software is just one tool for accurate code assignment. Using that tool too much at the expense of an ICD-9-CM Manual or CPT Manual can hinder—not help—correct coding.

Jennifer Avery, CCS, CPC, CPC-H, a regulatory specialist at HCPro, Inc., in Marblehead, MA, says encoder dependence is reliance on an automated coding system by someone who is not familiar with the coding conventions.

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