Health Information Management

Start resolving ICD-10-CM questions

HIM-HIPAA Insider, November 24, 2014

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Many coders rely on the advice in the American Hospital Association (AHA)'s Coding Clinic to resolve sticky situations with ICD-9-CM coding. However, the AHA will not be transitioning its current guidance to ICD-10-CM. Instead, in January, it began focusing solely on ICD-10-CM questions to help clear up confusion prior to implementation.
Although Congress mandated an implementation delay earlier this year, the AHA decided to continue focusing on ICD-10-CM questions as opposed to answering additional questions on ICD-9-CM. Coders don't have to throw out Coding Clinic advice for ICD-9-CM, but they do need to be careful when applying it in ICD-10-CM, says Nelly Leon-Chisen, RHIA, director of coding and classification for the AHA in Chicago.
For example, Coding Clinic, Third Quarter 2009, stated that hypoxia is not inherent in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). When hypoxia is associated with COPD, coders may assign code 799.02 (hypoxemia) as an additional diagnosis if desired, Leon-Chisen says.
When coding in ICD-10-CM, coders should first check to see whether ICD-10-CM includes a combination code for COPD with hypoxia, Leon-Chisen says. They should also check for any instructional notes that specify whether to code hypoxia separately.
Continue reading "Start resolving ICD-10-CM questions" on the HCPro website. Subscribers to Briefings on Coding Compliance Strategies have free access to this article in the November issue.

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