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Thread: Patient Not Present

  1. #1

    Default Patient Not Present

    AAPC: Back to School
    Scenario: Parents meet with physician to discuss the future treatment of a child who has just been diagnosed with cancer or that has the possibility of being diagnosed with cancer. The patient is not present during the visit.

    Can you bill an E/M visit? If not, any ideas of how this could be billed?


  2. #2


    Maybe you would want to check back in the june or july of 2009 coding edge issue. Because I've read something similiar to that. But if it's not in the june or july issue of 2009, definitely september.

    good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Eugene, Oregon


    According to the E/M guidelines "Face-to-face time (office and other outpatient visits and office consultations): For coding puposes, face-to-face time for these services is defined as only that time that the physician spends face-to-face with the patient and/or family." This is listed on page 5 of the guidelines in the AMA professional edition cpt 2009.

    The type of service being provided looks like it would fit under the definition of "couseling". (page 1)

    We bill for these services in our clinic. Our providers document the amount of couseling time vs. total time and we use that to drive our E/M level.

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