charging for hydration hours

ramirez505

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I was recently told that as long as IV fluid is running, I can charge for hydration hours CPT 96361 (not if it is the primary service). My understanding is that in order to charge hydration hours, there has to be a justifiable clinical reason -vomiting, low electrolytes, dry mucous membranes. Help, please. I also need to know where look in order to prove my point and if I am wrong, well, then I will start charging!! A beforehand, thank you:
 

mitchellde

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I agree with you that there needs to be a clinical reason, however look at the rate the fluids are running at, that will tell you if it is for hydration and not just for convenience. If the chart documentation does not support the code then I do not charge it, so if the rate is keep open or not therapeutic then it cannot be for hydration. I have always been told that therapeutic rate is 125cc/hr. Just ask you docs what a therapeutic rate is for adults and children.
 
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