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AMA Announces 2014 CPT Code Enhancements

The American Medical Association (AMA) recently announced the release of the 2014 Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code set. There are 335 code changes in new CPT edition reflecting the combined efforts of the health care community to capture and describe the latest scientific and technological advances in medical, surgical, and diagnostic services. The new code set should be used for claims filed as of Jan. 1, 2014.

“The CPT code set is the foundation upon which every element of the medical community—doctors, hospitals, allied health professionals, laboratories, and payers—can efficiently share accurate information about medical services,” says AMA President Ardis Dee Hoven, MD. “The latest annual changes to the CPT code set reflect new technological and scientific advancements available to mainstream clinical practice, and ensures the code set can fulfill its vital role as the health system’s common language for reporting contemporary medical procedures.”

Nearly one-quarter of this year’s CPT code changes resulted from an ongoing two-year effort to revise gastroenterology codes to capture significant advances in endoscopic technology, devices, and techniques. In recent years, miniaturization, powerful optical magnification, and new imaging technologies have led to a wide variety of new applications for minimally invasive upper gastrointestinal endoscopic surgical procedures and improved diagnostic capabilities. Coding changes for lower gastrointestinal services can be expected for CPT 2015.

“The newest edition of the CPT code set better captures the work involved with sophisticated endoscopic procedures now available to examine the upper gastrointestinal tract and advance the early detection of cancer and digestive disorders,” says Hoven. “Broad input from practicing physicians, medical specialty societies, and the greater health care community produced the practical enhancements that CPT needs to reflect the coding demands of the modern health care system.”

To assist the health care system in an orderly transition to the revised gastroenterology codes, the AMA released the CPT code set four months ahead of the Jan. 1 deadline and developed a grid to illustrate the transition to the updated codes.

In diagnostics, the scope of the molecular pathology services codes have also been substantially broadened with the addition of 316 molecular tests for detection of genes, somatic disorders, and germlines to the nine molecular pathology resource based Tier II codes.

Additional CPT enhancements for 2014 due to advancements in technology include new and revised codes for breast biopsies and imaging, multisystem image guided catheter drainage, cardiology and vascular embolization procedures.

The 2014 CPT codes and descriptors can be purchased and imported straight into existing claims and billing software using the downloadable CPT 2014 Data File. The file contains the updated code set’s complete descriptor package, including official descriptors for consumers and physicians, and the complete official CPT coding guidelines.

Source: American Medical Association