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Thread: New patient?

  1. #1

    Default New patient?

    AAPC: Back to School
    Sorry if this is really dumb....but I have a Psychiatrist who just brought on a Psychologist as a independent contractor. We bill them under the same tax ID. Even though they are both mental health, but not exactly the same discipline....can I still use New Patient codes for patients who are new to the psychologist but have been seen by the psychiatrist?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Lebanon, New Hampshire


    No, not if the psychologist's services are billed under the same tax ID #....the patient would be considered an established patient to the practice. However, if you're auditing the E&M, the "problem" would be considered new to the psychologist the first time he/she sees the patient.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Dover Seacoast New Hampshire


    It's been awhile since I've done psych billing, but when I did, a psychiatrist and psychologist were different specialties; one's a medical doctor, and the other is a doctor of philosophy, with no medical degree. Different specialties in the same group can bill new patient visits...it's not entirely tax-ID driven. However, I don't believe a psychologist could bill E&M visits, such as a psychiatrist (MD) can. Did that change?? I always billed a 90801 for the first diagnostic interview with the psychologist.
    But if the patient saw the psychologist first, then the psychiatrist, (MD) can bill 9920X as a new patient.

    I'm interested.....can psychologists now bill E&M? how do you meet the exam criteria for a non-medical practitioner?
    Last edited by Pam Brooks; 07-22-2011 at 07:17 AM. Reason: edit text.
    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

  4. #4


    Thanks for your help!
    It turned out to be a dumb question....not enough caffeine this morning. You brought up a great point....the psychologist does not bill an E/M code! For some reason i was thinking 90801 implied New patient, but it doesn't, so I'm good now!

    Thank you all

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