Ob-Gyn Coding Alert

Reader Question:

Cystic Fibrosis Testing

Question: I have heard that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) is going to require that ob/gyns offer their ob patients screening for cystic fibrosis. How should we code for this?

Nebraska Subscriber

Answer: First, you should understand that ACOG does not "require" a physician to do screening. It does make recommendations to physicians, however, regarding available screening tests and other protocols that deal with ob/gyn services. ACOG released a recommendation to its members in December 2001 that the test for screening for cystic fibrosis (V28.8, Other specified antenatal screening; and V77.6, Special screening for endocrine, nutritional, metabolic, and immunity disorders; cystic fibrosis) be offered to patients. Although CPT includes many tests for genetic testing, it does not list one that specifically describes cystic fibrosis testing. Consequently, you should check with your lab to see which one applies when the test is ordered. If you perform the blood draw for the sample, you may bill 36415* (Routine venipuncture or finger/heel/ear stick for collection of specimen[s]).

ACOG has included information to give to patients and background as to why this screening test is important. You can review the recommendation at http://www.acog.org/from_home/publications/press_rele ases/nr12-12-01-2.htm.