If you are a healthcare professional looking to bridge language barriers and make healthcare more inclusive and transparent for Spanish-speaking patients, you will be pleased to know that the American Medical Association (AMA) has released Spanish language descriptors for more than 11,000 medical procedures and services. These descriptors have been added to the newly released Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) 2024 code set, which is the nation’s leading data-sharing terminology for medical procedures and services.
The AMA’s consumer-friendly descriptors in Spanish can be a valuable resource for many hospitals, health plans, medical offices, and other CPT users who already incorporate English-language medical documents, insurance forms, price sheets, and patient portals. By including clear and straightforward descriptors in Spanish, the AMA aims to help CPT users better engage and assist many in the Latinx community.
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- The AMA now offers Spanish language descriptors for more than 11,000 medical procedures and services to make healthcare more inclusive and transparent for Spanish-speaking patients.
- The newly released Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) 2024 code set includes these consumer-friendly descriptors in Spanish, which can be a valuable resource for many healthcare professionals and organizations.
- By providing clear and straightforward descriptors in Spanish, the AMA aims to help CPT users better engage and assist many in the Latinx community.
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Other Changes to the CPT Code Set
In addition to the changes to vaccine administration codes and immunization codes, the CPT code set for 2024 includes several other changes. There are 349 editorial changes, including 230 additions, 49 deletions, and 70 revisions. These changes respond to the rapid pace of innovation in medical science and health technology and are the result of a rigorous editorial process that ensures the CPT code set remains current with contemporary medical science and technology.
One important change is the addition of five new CPT codes to report product-specific Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) immunizations. These codes (90380, 90381, 90683, 90679, and 90678) will improve tracking, reporting, and analysis of RSV immunizations, which will support data-driven planning and allocation.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services sought clarifications on the reporting of evaluation and management (E/M) services, prompting revisions to the CPT 2024 code set. These revisions include the removal of time ranges from office or other outpatient visit codes (99202-99205, 99212-99215) and alignment of the format with other E/M codes.
Additionally, a definition has been added to determine the “substantive portion” of a split/shared E/M visit, in which a physician and a non-physician practitioner work jointly to furnish all the work related to the visit. Instructions have also been added for reporting hospital inpatient or observation care services and admission and discharge services for the use of codes 99234-99236 when the patient stay crosses two calendar dates.
The CPT code set for 2024 also includes editorial changes to improve the accuracy of coding and clinical examples and illustrations to help coders better understand how to apply the codes. Consumer-friendly descriptors have been added to enhance patient understanding of medical procedures and services. Additionally, the CPT Editorial Panel has approved Category I immunization codes and Category III codes for emerging technologies.
The CPT code set also includes changes to proprietary laboratory analyses (PLA) codes. These changes will be included in the CPT 2024 code set but have various effective dates. The most recent changes to the CPT PLA codes include the addition of new immunization vaccine codes and updates to dosing guidance for the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine code (91303).
The CPT Editorial Panel has also approved temporary codes for emerging technologies that do not yet have a Category I code. These temporary codes allow for the accurate coding and reporting of these technologies, which can help ensure proper reimbursement and avoid denied claim submissions and penalization.
Finally, the CPT code set for 2024 includes Spanish language descriptors to improve access to medical procedures and services for Spanish-speaking patients. Anatomical illustrations have also been added to the ICD-10-PCS and ICD-10-CM code sets to help coders better understand how to apply the codes.
Overall, the changes to the CPT code set for 2024 reflect the rapid pace of innovation in medical science and health technology and are designed to ensure accurate coding and reporting of medical procedures and services. These changes will support data-driven planning and allocation, improve patient understanding of medical procedures and services, and help ensure proper reimbursement for medical providers.
PLA Code Changes
Effective Oct. 1, 2023, there will be several changes to the CPT® PLA codes. According to the AMA website, the changes include:
- Revision (0269U, 0271U, 0272U, 0274U, 0277U, 0278U, 0362U), deletion (0066U, 0357U, 0386U, 0397U), and addition of codes (0402U–0419U)
- Addition of duplicate PLA test symbol and parenthetical note to code 0345U
- Addition of the term “quantitative” to the code descriptor for code 0389U
- Correction of abbreviation CAD to CHD for coronary heart disease in the descriptor for code 0401U
Before using the new codes, verify that the payer is prepared to accept them.
New Immunization Vaccine Codes
Effective Jan. 1, 2024, there will be several changes to the immunization vaccine codes in the CPT® code set. The changes include:
- Addition of vaccine codes (90380, 90381, 90589, 90623, 90683)
- Update to dosing guidance for Janssen COVID-19 vaccine code (91303)
- Respiratory syncytial virus codes 90380 and 90831 are effective upon receiving Emergency Use Authorization or approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
- Removal of FDA approval pending symbol for code 90678 Respiratory syncytial virus vaccine, preF, subunit, bivalent, for intramuscular use
Code 90679 Respiratory syncytial virus vaccine, preF, recombinant, subunit, adjuvanted, for intramuscular use went into effect May 3, 2023.
CPT® Category III Code Changes
Effective Jan. 1, 2024, there will be several additions to the CPT® Category III code set. The changes include:
- Addition (0911T-0815T, 0820T-0858T, 0864T-0866T) and revision of codes (0517T-0520T), guidelines, and parenthetical notes for various emerging technologies
As these are temporary codes for emerging technologies, payers may not accept them.
It’s important to stay informed about these changes to ensure accurate coding and billing practices. For more information, see the official documents for details of all the early release changes to the CPT® code set.
CPT Codes 2024 Frequently Asked Questions
The American Medical Association (AMA) has released the CPT 2024 code set, which includes several changes to the codes. One of the most significant changes is the consolidation of over 50 previous codes that streamline the reporting of immunizations for COVID-19. Additionally, there are provisional codes (91318-91322) to identify monovalent vaccine products from Moderna and Pfizer for immunization against COVID-19.
The AMA CPT code book is a comprehensive listing of medical codes used to report medical procedures and services. It is used by healthcare professionals, coders, billers, and payers to ensure accurate and consistent reporting of medical procedures and services. The AMA CPT code book can be purchased directly from the AMA or from various online retailers.
The purpose of the CPT code set is to provide a uniform language that accurately describes medical, surgical, and diagnostic services. It is used to report medical procedures and services to insurance companies for reimbursement purposes. The CPT code set is also used for research, quality measurement, and benchmarking.
The AMA CPT code lookup tool is a free online resource that allows healthcare professionals to search for CPT codes by keyword, code, or descriptor. To use the tool, simply enter the keyword, code, or descriptor in the search bar and click “Search.” The tool will provide a list of codes that match the search criteria.
The global period for CPT code 20240 is 90 days. The global period is the period of time during which all pre-operative, intra-operative, and post-operative services related to a procedure are included in the payment for that procedure.
The AMA does not offer a free download of the CPT code book. However, there are various online resources that offer free access to the codes, such as the CMS website. It is important to note that these free resources may not be as up-to-date as the official AMA CPT code book.
The AMA has released its Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) code set update for 2024 which encompasses 349 editorial changes, including 230 additions, 49 deletions, and 70 revisions
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