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consults prior to surgery


Best answers
One of my doctors is being asked to place a permanent dialysis cath goes to see the patient then either places the cath that day or the next and he wants to bill for a consult. I don't think he can bill for a consult since he was asked to place the cath. He says he has to do a consult but I've told him it's part of the cath placement code. I'm I correct in this or can he bill for a consult?

Milwaukee WI
Best answers

It sounds from your description that this is NOT a consult.

If the requesting physician is asking your surgeon to perform the procedure, then the evaluation that is done prior to the procedure is part of the procedure.

If the requesting physician is asking your surgeon for advice on how best to provide access for dialysis, and the surgeon evaluates the patient and determines that a catheter is the optimal treatment, then the eval might be coded as a consult.

But like, I said at the top - it sounds like the "decision for surgery" was made by the requesting physician, and your surgeon is limited to coding the procedure.

F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CPC-E/M