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Issue #140 - January 6, 2010
AAPC EdgeBlast

Medicare Delays MPFS Payment Cut
President Barack Obama signed into law Dec. 22, 2009 the $636.3 billion Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010 (HR 3326), giving Medicare participating physicians a two month reprieve from payment cuts that were scheduled to go into effect Jan. 1.

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Proposed "Meaningful Use" Criteria Released 12/30
Federal efforts and the monetary incentives to providers and facilities to adopt electronic medical record (EMR) systems hinge on the definition of “meaningful use” and on December 30 the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released proposed rules that include that definition. Comments are being sought on the definitions and rules, which differ for providers and facilities for 60 days after publishing. The Meaningful Use criteria must be met by any EMR adopted by a provider or hospital hoping to receive the financial incentives included in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), or commonly called the "stimulus package."

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CLFS and Lab Services Annual Update
In with the new and out with the old … codes, that is. Jan. 1 means many codes have been added, revised, or removed to and from the Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule (CLFS). The New Year also means new rates.

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Hospice Reporting Requirements Optional Until April
Hospices should be aware of revised reporting requirements that went into effect Jan. 1. These reporting requirements are optional right now, but they become mandatory April 1. Noncompliance will likely cause delays in claims adjudication.

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Medicare Fraud Strike Force Widens Scope
The Department of Justice (DOJ) and Health and Human Services (HHS) announced Dec. 15, 2009 expansion of Medicare Fraud Strike Force operations to Brooklyn, Tampa, and Baton Rouge.

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2010 MPFS Sees Significant Policy Changes
By now, you’ve probably heard about the biggest change the 2010 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) final rule has brought about—the elimination of consultation codes. Because this news has received so much fanfare, you may have overlooked other important policy changes. The following is a summary of additional significant policy changes taking place in 2010 of which you should be aware.

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Free Webinar: Course of Action on Coding Compliance for ASCs
Hospitals nationwide are dealing with Recover Audit Contractor (RAC) Audits. Can ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) be far behind? Are you prepared?

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Coding Tips
Check Payer Policies for Consult Code Coverage
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Imaging Interpretations Require Full Disclosure
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New POS Code Tracks Retail Clinics
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CMS Sets Telehealth Site Facility Fee Payment
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MPFS Corrections Document Worth a Look
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Outpatient Therapy Reaches Limit: See Exceptions
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Medical News

HIV Screening Covered Under Preventative Care
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Test Yourself Online
The Test Yourself questions can be accessed online at www.aapc.com/testyourself/. Once you go there and take the test, you can automatically grade your answers, correct any mistakes, and have your CEUs automatically added to your CEU Tracker for submission.

Coding Job Links
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AAPC Employment Forums

Featured Items
MPFS Payment Cuts
"Meaningful Use"
Lab Fees Update
Hospice Reporting
Medicare Fraud Force
2010 MPFS Changes
ASC Coding Compliance
Coding Tips
Medical News
Test Yourself Online
Coding Job Links

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