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Many practices are breathing a sigh of relief after CMS decided to hold off on critical payments changes for E/M services. But don’t get too comfortable just yet.
CMS hit the brakes on making imminent changes to the oft-used E/M code set that’s tied to billions of dollars in medical practice revenue. Streamlined payment rates are off the table for 2019, as are vast documentation revisions, according to the 2,378-page final 2019 Medicare physician fee schedule released Nov. 1. Once you’ve read through our detailed breaking news, take our quick, confidential survey to share your opinion.
You’ll find new guidance that will help practices document services, code correctly and combat denials in your 2019 CPT manual. The electronic version of the 2019 CPT manual is available and DecisionHealth has reviewed the book to create this overview of some of the revisions and additions in next year's manual.
You could find a single payment amount for your level 2 to 5 office codes and significantly reduced documentation requirements as soon as Jan. 1 should changes put forth in the 2019 proposed Medicare physician fee schedule come to realization.
Providers could have 435 code changes to deal with starting Oct. 1 with 247 new codes, 139 revised codes and 49 codes rendered invalid, according to the hospital inpatient prospective payment system (IPPS) proposed rule released April 24.

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