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One primary surgeon and two assists

  1. #1
    Default One primary surgeon and two assists
    Medical Coding Books
    The surgery was done with a primary and two assists. Each assist did about 1/2 of the surgery. I don't know who to give credit for the assist portion and modifiers 62 and 66 don't reallly seem to fit the situation. Can I use modifier 81 on both the assists.

  2. #2
    Location
    Baton Rouge
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    1,239
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    Quote Originally Posted by coder32 View Post
    The surgery was done with a primary and two assists. Each assist did about 1/2 of the surgery. I don't know who to give credit for the assist portion and modifiers 62 and 66 don't reallly seem to fit the situation. Can I use modifier 81 on both the assists.
    Here is an example of 1 payer's policy on billing for multiple assists...generally, only 1 will be paid for. As for which one gets credit for it and is allowed to bill for it--your clinic should set a policy. I've seen other comments that recommend allowing them to take turns billing if this is a common scenario, that way it equals out.

    https://www.oxhp.com/secure/policy/a...rgery_711.html

    Hope this helps!
    Meagan Strauss, CPC, CEMC
    Coding Coordinator
    The NeuroMedical Center
    Baton Rouge, LA

  3. Default
    Seeing that each assistant did about 1/2 of the surgery why not use -80 for both.

  4. #4
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    1,087
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    Quote Originally Posted by coder32 View Post
    The surgery was done with a primary and two assists. Each assist did about 1/2 of the surgery. I don't know who to give credit for the assist portion and modifiers 62 and 66 don't reallly seem to fit the situation. Can I use modifier 81 on both the assists.
    You will not get reimbursement for two assists at surgery. You can only bill for one assistant.
    Arlene J. Smith, CPC, CPMA, CEMC, COBGC

  5. Default
    We have billed two assists at surgery but not for the same codes. For example, if one PA assists for the posterior portion of a surgery, scrubs out and the other PA comes in for the anterior portion of the surgery but we don't bill two assists for the same codes, only for the codes which they have assisted on and the documentation has to be pretty specific as to what each one did. Thanks!

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