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  1. TheStephCode

    CPMA or CDEO?

    I have both. I recommend the CPMA first, followed by the CDEO at some point. Both are valuable to an auditor. The CPMA is specific to auditing. The CDEO focuses on clinical documentation. They go hand in hand, in my opinion but the CPMA is the horse while the CDEO is the cart.
  2. TheStephCode

    Studying for CDEO

    Can you tell me which reference you selected to use for this exam and/or if you would recommend it,... or something else? I am getting ready to take this exam, finally. Thanks!
  3. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    The training course dropped.
  4. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    Thank you dawnrosey! I am very much interested in this feedback as well. I have some news and the source is someone I trust at AAPC. I'm told a CDEO course and practice exam will be available in July and they will indeed release a study guide but it will be delayed several more months. I...
  5. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    Riddle me this, oh wise ones. Would any of you have a suggestion for a single resource to provide the following information? Maybe not so much the ICD-10, but I would LOVE to find a single source to study for 1-5 instead of having to research every condition individually. The CDEO exam...
  6. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    That is disappointing, to say the least, if it proves to be true. I've been told by numerous people at AAPC over the past year that it was being edited and would be ready in summer 2016, then fall 2016, then December 2016, then May 2017 and lastly that it was still being edited but they no...
  7. TheStephCode

    CIMC and CRHC

    To those with a specialty credential in Rheumatology/CRHC,.... It is my understanding that Rheumatology is a subspecialty of Internal Medicine. If you have a Rheumatology/CRHC credential, would you advise to first get the Internal Medicine/CIMC,... or just go for it and do the...
  8. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    CDEO Study Guide Update - Sort of Clearly that did not happen so I called again. Now I am told that the guide is not ready and they do not have a projected date for them to be available. When pressed, the gentleman at AAPC stated "maybe this summer",.. but I officially give up on waiting for...
  9. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    I just called. Now they are saying the end of April due to additional revisions.
  10. TheStephCode

    CDEO Study Guide

    Have any of you recently inquired about this study guide and gotten an update? Last I heard it was to be available mid March but I don't see it yet.
  11. TheStephCode

    Studying for CDEO

    Did you take the exam? If so, which one additional resource would you recommend to take with me?
  12. TheStephCode

    Any Updates on CDEO Study Manual?

    Ooh,...thanks for the update!
  13. TheStephCode

    Any Updates on CDEO Study Manual?

    Have any of you gotten an update from AAPC on when these manuals will be available and/or if they are still expecting them this month?
  14. TheStephCode

    Wiki Help....7 th digit -a/d

    Did healing begin? If yes, it is subsequent. The threshold between "A" and "D" is the point at which healing begins. If not, for instance the patient still needs surgery before the healing process can begin or the patient's fracture still needs to be set, then they are still receiving active...
  15. TheStephCode

    CPMA exam

    Yes, that was the focus when this thread was posted in 2015. When this thread was resurrected recently it was an inquiry into the poster's exam results and if her exam results qualified for a passing score.
  16. TheStephCode

    Studying for CDEO

    You certainly would not be wasting your time in doing so. There will be similar information covered on both exams. Both exams cover documentation compliance and procedure/dx coding. These credentials, in my opinion, seem to go hand-in-hand, with each diving a little deeper into auditing or...
  17. TheStephCode

    UHC Unbundling EKGs (93000)

    The problem that we're having is in the auto payment posting. UHC's policy of unbundling causes us to have to manually edit and post each and every EKG reimbursement which, for hospitals, can be thousands of encounters per month. Has anyone else encountered this? I would be very interested in...
  18. TheStephCode

    Studying for CDEO

    I will commit and schedule my exam when the study guide or practice exams are available. I want to know exactly what I need to study before I take that 5 hour 40 minute test. I really want to obtain this credential but only want to have to test for it once! I've spoken with someone at AAPC a...
  19. TheStephCode

    Urgent Help!!!!!1

    A skin tag is a type of skin lesion. A skin lesion is abnormal growth or appearance compared to the skin around it which would include, for example, a skin tag, ulcer, pustule, scar etc.
  20. TheStephCode

    UHC Unbundling EKGs (93000)

    I would like to know if anyone else has encountered this situation and if so, how are you handling it? When we bill 93000 to UHC, they unbundle it and return a payment for 93005 and 93010. We bill thousands of EKGs per month btw. They state it is a Medicare policy that they are adjusting...
  21. TheStephCode

    CPMA exam

    I just called AAPC on another matter and added this question while I had them on the line. They confirmed that pass/fail is based on an overall score of 70%. You can fail one area but still pass as long as your overall score is 70% or above. Christina, I encourage you to call and further...
  22. TheStephCode

    CPMA Exam

    Pass/Fail is based on an overall score of the exam. If you fall below 70% in one area but have an overall passing score, you will receive your CPMA.
  23. TheStephCode

    Open vs minimally invasive

    I'm looking for sound definition of an open vs minimally invasive procedure. I know certain types of surgery such as the laparoscope and robotic devices indicate minimally invasive, but in the absence of modern devices,... say, the surgeon just uses a scalpel to access, for instance,.... how is...
  24. TheStephCode

    UTI vs symptoms

    I think it is outside the scope of coding and entering into the world of a PhD in medicine to challenge a doctor on his diagnosis. We should protect our providers in the scope of coding and documentation compliancy but refrain from crossing into diagnosing/undiagnosing a patient. I agree with...
  25. TheStephCode

    pay per chart, what is the going rate?

    It seems considerably low for an experienced certified radiology coder. I would see if they are open to negotiate the rate. If not, perhaps take it for now since you need the money but actively seek permanent employment knowing that experienced radiology coders are amongst the highest paid in...
  26. TheStephCode

    Bilateral Diagnosis

    Interesting question and I will be curious to see how others respond. If it is one diagnosis of one body area,... b/l breast cancer or b/l knee arthritis for example, I count it as one. However, I've never really paused to consider the possibility that it may be more than one due to laterality...
  27. TheStephCode

    Preparing for CPMA exam

    I just used the AAPC study guide and did all the practice exams over and over and over. I used every blank page in my CPT manual for notes and tabbed each of the pages with a topic. One page, for example was for surgical notes, another was for organizations/penalties/laws, etc. I referred to...
  28. TheStephCode

    Consultation Report When Providers are Internal

    "has been made available,..." I feel good about that wording. Thanks for your advice!
  29. TheStephCode

    Consultation Report When Providers are Internal

    I work for a large physician group. All providers use the same EMR so when a consult occurs between two of our providers there is no need to physically forward a report since the referring has access to it. (1) What does our specialist need to document to satisfy the third 'R' for billing...
  30. TheStephCode

    Consult vs transfer of care

    Here is how I handle the situation you describe. My threshold is what the provider knows on the outside of the door before he enters a patient's room, assuming s/he has already reviewed the case. (1) If it is known that he will take over management of the patient's condition before he sees the...
  31. TheStephCode

    Documenting HPI

    We shall beat this dead horse once again. Does anyone have a source from any commercial payer(s) that specifically states a provider must document the HPI, or that the commercial payer follows Medicare guidelines? Our MAC is very clear on the matter but our providers want to see it "in...
  32. TheStephCode

    Palliative Care Coding Education?

    Anyone,.... Bueller? Bueller?
  33. TheStephCode

    Palliative Care Coding Education?

    Can someone please recommend a sound source to learn all the basics of palliative care coding? I've read the CMS manual but still have A LOT of coding questions. Any guidance to a sound source of education would be much appreciated. I would prefer reading material but I am also open to a...
  34. TheStephCode

    What is your go to refrence that is not the DG's or google?

    I use the NAMAS Audit Reference Guide or I reach out to our external auditor to compare notes.
  35. TheStephCode

    ICD10 Denials for Z00.00

    Just a thought but maybe the issue is that they have already had their well visit for the year and using the dx before they are eligible for another well visit is causing the denial.
  36. TheStephCode

    Posterior dislocation of radius and ulna

    Is it traumatic? If so S53.12-- (requires 7 characters to identify laterality and initial/subsequent or sequel). This code covers radioulna.
  37. TheStephCode

    Sciatic Radiculopathy?

    M54.16 Radiculopathy, lumbar region "Sciatic" places the radiculopathy in the lumbar region.
  38. TheStephCode

    Hyperlipidemia (E78.5) and Hyperglycemia (R73.9)

    This explains everything,.. they can be coded together.
  39. TheStephCode

    Tick Bite

    Bite/arm/superficial/insect S40.86-- (req's 7 digits)
  40. TheStephCode

    Initial "A" vs "D" clafification Please

    I stop and ask myself,...'has the healing process began?" If not and treatment is still necessary and being sought then it continues to be initial,... if so then it is subsequent. A perfect example of a multi visit initial encounter is a fracture seen in ER on a Sunday,.. then surgically set...
  41. TheStephCode

    what is the ICD 10 code for diabetes with manifestation,uncontrolled

    Code your dm with manifestation first followed by the code for dm with hyperglycemia. This document from AHIMA states "Instead of classifying as controlled or uncontrolled, ICD-10-CM classifies inadequately controlled, out of control, and poorly controlled diabetes mellitus by type with...
  42. TheStephCode


    I might suggest the ICD-10-CM Study Guide from AAPC. It breaks down the guidelines for each chapter of the code set and addresses sequencing. Each chapter has practice tests. If you want something a bit more in depth I recommend the ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS Coding Handbook, with Answers by...
  43. TheStephCode

    Excludes 1 clarification from WHO

    Excellent info and very much appreciated. Many thanks for the clarification!!
  44. TheStephCode

    Why can't hyperlipidemia and prediabetes be coded together?

    Thank you. I was really hoping you would be amongst those to read and reply. I've been all over my books and google this morning trying to figure out some reasoning behind this guideline. I'm glad to learn we're not the only ones confused by this!
  45. TheStephCode

    Why can't hyperlipidemia and prediabetes be coded together?

    Does anyone have a technical explanation or even a guesstimate as to why ICD-10-CM guidelines prohibit hyperlipidemia (E78.5) and prediabetes (R73.09) to be coded together? Abnormal findings on exam of blood, without diagnosis (R70-R79) EXCLUDES1 lipids (E78.-) Our physicians are...
  46. TheStephCode

    Volunteering is EASY

    I was told the same thing when I was fresh out of school. When I finally secured a job in coding I discovered they had several paid interns! Hmphf. I would suggest going to meetings and make acquaintances. That is how ALL of our interns secured their position. They were sons/daughters of...
  47. TheStephCode

    Remote Coding WITH Benefits does anyone know any good employers?

    Try searching for entry level positions with an insurance company. They will be more apt to hire a new coder. The provider side will want experience before they typically consider a candidate for coding. Another option, for provider side is a position in insurance follow-up, eligibility...
  48. TheStephCode

    Beyond frustrated with the lack of entry level jobs in this field

    I started in hospital registration followed by insurance eligibility then moved to insurance follow-up and finally, through contacts and good reputation, made my way to the coding department. It took a while but my experience in registration and insurance provided a wealth of knowledge. It...