outpatient versus observation codes

diannet

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we are discussing in our office whether to use observation admit code for a patient who is in the hospital under outpatient status. We are the true admitting doctor...should we use 99218-99220 or 99213-99215? Thanks for your help
 

Leandra

Guru
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Grand Rapids
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Whenever I run into this situation in our office I check with the hospital to see how they have the patient listed - outpt or observation. That helps me determine which CPT codes to use.
 

mitchellde

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Columbia, MO
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Observation is outpatient and it depends on the physicians order not how the hospital lists it. If the physician has written the order for observation then you use the observation codes for the attending physician with the POS as 22.
 
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