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Surgical Services from the 60000 Series of CPT Billed with Other Services

HMSA is in the process of upgrading its claims processing system for private business claims. During the transition from old system to new, some claims will process using HMSA's existing edits and others will process using the new claims processing system with Ingenix edits. Because HMSA is transitioning to a new system, it does not plan to incorporate the policy changes into the old system. As a result, providers may notice small variations in processed claims, depending on whether the old system or the new system was used for processing.

 

The guidelines described below apply to claims processed under the new claims processing system. The guidelines should be used for filing all private business claims.

 

The code edit changes described in the guidelines below will not override HMSA's existing medical policies.

 

Modifiers

When billing for surgical services with other services, it is important to bill accurately.

 

When the surgical code is billed with an Evaluation & Management (E/M) visit, a modifier code must be appended to the E/M code to ensure that both services are paid when appropriate. The following modifiers may be used for this purpose: 24, 25 and 57.

 

Modifier Code 25

Modifier Code 57

Preoperative Visits

Postoperative Visits

 

When two or more surgical codes are billed together, a modifier code(s) must be appended to one or more of the surgical codes. Modifiers that may be used include 51, 58, 59, 76, 78, 79, LT, RT and other site specific modifiers. Practitioners are urged to familiarize themselves with the criteria listed in CPT and in the following policies.

 

Modifier Code 59

Modifier Code 76

Modifier Codes 78 and 79

Multiple Surgical Procedures

 

Modifier codes should only be used when the service meets the criteria described in CPT and HMSA's policies. HMSA will perform postpayment reviews of modifier usage as needed to verify modifiers were used as described. If postpayment review indicates that modifiers were not used appropriately, HMSA will request return of any overpayment. See Benefit Overpayment.

 

Specific Edits

The following code edits apply to surgical services from the 60000 series of CPT billed with other services.

 

If the code in the left column is billed with any of the codes in the right column, one of the codes will deny. The reason for the denial may vary because:

  • The codes may be mutually exclusive. Mutually exclusive procedures are two or more procedures that are usually not performed during the same patient encounter on the same date of service.
  • Multiple codes may have been billed, which taken together are more accurately described by a more comprehensive procedure code.
  • The code may be incidental to another code. An incidental procedure is a procedure carried out at the same time as a more complex primary procedure; however, the incidental procedure requires little additional physician resources and/or is clinically integral to the performance of the primary procedure.

 

However, unless otherwise indicated, a modifier may be used to request separate payment, if criteria for the use of the modifier are met.

 

Codes from the 60000 series billed with other codes from the same series

 

CPT Code(s) CPT Code(s)
65780-65782

68320

Note: Payment will not be made for conjunctivoplasty, even if a modifier is used. This service is considered integral to the other, more comprehensive procedure.

65780-65782

68325

Note: Payment will not be made for conjunctivoplasty, even if a modifier is used. This service is considered integral to the other, more comprehensive procedure.

68320

65780-65782

Note: This code combination will not be paid, even if billed with a modifier. 68320 is considered integral to the other, more comprehensive procedures.

68325

65780-65782

Note: This code combination will not be paid, even if billed with a modifier. 68325 is considered integral to the other, more comprehensive procedures.

 

Codes from the 60000 series billed with other codes from the Surgery and Radiology sections

 

CPT Code(s) CPT Code(s)
20552-20553 64405
20660

61793-61795

Note: This code combination may not be paid, even if billed with a modifier. 20660 should not be reported as a separate procedure because it is considered integral to the major procedure.

29125 64450
54150

64450

Note: Newborn circumcision is not a benefit of all HMSA plans. Coverage varies by plan.

55700 64450

 

Codes from the 60000 series billed with codes from the Medicine section

 

CPT Code(s) CPT Code(s)
90765 64479, 64483, 64626
90772 61000, 69210, 69420
92551-92555, 92557, 92583

69210

Note: Payment will not be made for 69210, even if a modifier is used. This service is considered integral to the other, more comprehensive procedures.

 

Codes from the 60000 series billed with Evaluation and Management services

 

Service Description CPT Code(s)
New patient office visits 69210 [2]
Established patient office visits 65855, 69210 [2], 69220[2]
Office or other outpatient consultations 62270, 62310, 64475, 64483, 64520, 64760, 65222, 65430, 67820, 69210[2]
Critical care (adults and pediatric), NICU and intensive care

61070, 62270

Note: Payment will not be made for 62270 when billed with PICU or NICU (99293-99296), even if a modifier is used. The service is included in the overall payment for PICU and NICU .

Preventive services exam, established patient 69200, 69205, 69210[2]

 

Note:

  1. The above lists are not all inclusive and are subject to change.
  2. When one of these procedures are billed, HMSA's current claims processing system will allow payment only of the higher-valued code, either the visit or the procedure. Under the new system, both may be paid if criteria are met for the use of an appropriate modifier.

First Published:06/01/2007
Latest Revision:02/14/2008

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