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Thread: EMR system & coding

  1. #1

    Default EMR system & coding

    AAPC: Back to School
    I am newly certified and just had a quick question concerning EMR. The office that i work at have their own billing company so we dont have billing positions. We are getting EMR in a couple months and my boss and a few others there are saying that EMR in a way is somewhat replacing coding. Was just curious if anybody else had to deal with anything like this. Thanks Janel

  2. #2

    Talking Emr

    We have had EMR since 2006. All of our codes are in EMR, but someone still has to code procedures and E/M. I have seen some systems that do calculate E/M codes. Hope this helps!

  3. #3


    My practice also has EMR. But it has not replaced any coders. The docs can click on diagnoses all day long, but if someone is not there to enter the charges and know the guidelines then that's not going to help anything. We're all kind of like internal auditors-have to make sure everything adds up, nothing is contradicting, etc.

    Amanda, CPC
    Anesthesia coder

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Default Coding Errors by EMR systems

    I am trying to find stats concerning coding errors and EMR systems. I am trying to prove why you still need some one auditing the coding. Anyone have any ideas on where I can find some statistics about this?


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Phoenix, AZ


    I don't know about statistics. However, I audit all our MDs as they transition to EMR. Since our patients fill out an ROS at every visit and the MAs enter the information, the docs click all the "correct" ticks for a detailed hx AND they can document a comp exam, they think they deserve a 99215 for every patient. HOWEVER, you cannot get a 99215 for a common ordinary hang nail! Coders are still necessary. We need to look at those visits and say NO, that's not correct.
    Cyndi Allen, CPC, CIRCC
    2015 Local Chapter President, Casa Grande, AZ

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Columbia, MO


    Not only the visit level but the dx. All these programs do is look for key words and SUGGEST a dx code based on what it finds. No logic or rules at all. So if your physician mentions that the patient appears a little depressed, then the program will suggest a code such as 311 for depression, but that is not what the physician said. So as far as I can tell until they build in artifical intelligence coders will still be needed.

    Debra A. Mitchell, MSPH, CPC-H

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Dover Seacoast New Hampshire


    For the last five years, I've been in the throes of an EMR system conversion that would "eliminate the need for coders".

    Long story short: once the powers that be figured out that RVU issues, billing issues, external audit results, and documentation deficiencies were going to affect their bottom line and their compliance risk, it became crystal clear that coders were vitally important.

    The one change I continue to see is that our facility requires certified coders who can audit, educate, analyze software, write policies and procedures, and keep up with the coding, payer and documentation changes. My staff has been reduced by four "staff coders" over the past two years, and I anticipate that there may be further reductions as the EMR system is rolled out to specialty practices. I am certain, however, that we will continue to need coding staff, but not at the "staff coder" level.
    Pam Brooks, MHA, CPC, PCS, COC
    Coding Manager
    Wentworth-Douglass Hospital
    Dover, NH 03820

    If you can dream it, you can do it. Walt Disney

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