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Thread: Critical Care Time...

  1. #1

    Default Critical Care Time...

    AAPC: Back to School
    Good Afternoon, I have a question. Can Critical Care Time continue once the patient expires in the ED? The ED doc's at my facility feel that because they have to make phone calls to the Medical Examiner, fill out death certificate, other duties related to a patient who expires..they feel they can still count CCT for those phone calls and paper work etc...Is this true ? I have told them that The telephone calls, speaking with family and other doctors will normally count towards the critical care time (if documented) when they are currently treating a pt for a life-threatening illness/injury, but if the patient has expired, they are no longer caring for that pt's life-threatening condition... Please advise. Thanks!

  2. #2

    Wink Critical Care on Dead Pt

    Reading Critical Care guidelines in the CPT book does not state anything about being allowed for your question of the patient is dead. These codes are for CRITICALLY ILL patients.....I don't believe it is ethical for your MD's to be billing after the pt has died. Hope that helps, but you can find the guidelines in your CPT book under Critical Care services that explains it fully.

    Cindy K CPC

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Milwaukee WI

    Default NO

    No, they cannot count time spent in processing paperwork after the patient's death as critical care time.

    BUT ... the physician who pronounces the patient CAN count that time as part of discharge day management codes (doesn't help when the patient was in the ER, sorry).

    Hope that helps.

    F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CEMC

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