Health Information Management

Tip of the Week: Understand how to code and bill common IR procedures

APCs Insider, September 14, 2007

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In order to code and bill for interventional radiology (IR) procedures, coders must focus on the three steps that physicians perform. These include:

1. Placement of the catheter

2. Injection of the contrast agent

3. Interventional procedures

Other guidelines that coders should follow when reporting interventions during IR procedures include the following:

  • Code for each vessel that a physician separately treats with a stent.
  • Oftentimes, a physician places a stent directly onto an angioplasty balloon and inflates the balloon as a means to place the stent. Do not code this procedure separately, because it is considered stent placement.
  • As with all interventional studies, code the catheter placement into the first, second, and third order vessel-in addition to the intervention that the physician performs-in order to receive full reimbursement.

    (The above tip appeared in the October 2007 issue of Briefings on APCs).



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