Health Information Management

Do not report drug administration code for non-therapeutic IV infusion

APCs Insider, December 15, 2006

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Do not report drug administration code for non-therapeutic IV infusion

QUESTION: A patient presents to the ED with a complaint of a left buttock abscess. While the patient was in the ED the physician determined that surgery was necessary. Staff brought the patient to the OR for an incision and drainage procedure under general anesthesia. A nurse started an IV of ringers lactate in the ED. Can we separately charge this IV?

ANSWER: The question appears to ask whether it is appropriate to bill C8950 (which will become 90760 in 2007) for the first hour of hydration. It appears that staff started the IV to facilitate anesthesia administration for the patient's OR procedure. Since there is no therapeutic reason for the hydration, meaning that it appears to be a carrier solution only (the patient is not dehydrated, or in need of the ringers lactate for a diagnostic or therapeutic purpose), do not bill the first hour drug administration code (C8950, or 90760) separately in this scenario.

Note that you should charge the ringers solution separately using revenue code 258 for solutions.



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