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Thursday Apr 12, 2018

Do your diagnosis codes capture your patients' severity of illness?

Accurate diagnosis coding, which contributes to a more complete picture of patient health status, may have a positive effect on your payment in the future as more payers move to risk-adjusted payment models. Adopting these five coding habits will position your practice for success:

1. Use the problem list feature in your electronic health record to track relevant diagnoses.

2. Report not only the diagnosis codes that describe why a patient was seen but also any diagnosis codes associated with chronic conditions that affected treatment choices.

3. Code to the highest level of specificity.

4. Code comprehensively at annual visits, because patient risk scores are reset each year.

5. Select diagnosis codes that map to Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCCs). A cheat sheet can help. See “ICD-10 – HCC Coding Reference for Family Medicine.” 

Adapted from “Is Your Diagnosis Coding Ready for Risk Adjustment?” and “Diagnosis Coding for Value-Based Payment: A Quick Reference Tool.”

Posted at 11:45PM Apr 12, 2018 by FPM Editors

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