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Help in Coding For Death Cert Done at Funeral Parlor

  1. #1
    Default Help in Coding For Death Cert Done at Funeral Parlor
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    Is it possible to code for a provider who did a death cert (document what he died of) at the funeral parlor? She was contacted by them to do the death cert. The patient was found decease in his living room and she contacted the coroner's office to find out the details. Is this something we can even bill for? The patient was never in a hospital. I'm at a loss for this. Thank you for any help you can offer!!!

  2. Default
    I am doing the coding class now and used to work at funeral home for almost 5 years. I would suggest to do nothing to it unless a.) that is the deceased actual primary physician, and be make sure the death certificate passes the states guidelines first before you code anything. The state will ensure the proper formalities of the death certificate. If there is anything slightly wrong with it the state will not accept the death certificate and certify it. Hopefully that helps.

    Courtney Horman
    -Gaithersburg, MD

  3. Smile
    Now that I think about it .. There should be no coding.. The fees will come from the funeral home directly to the family. And as far as the "physician" signing the death certificate, she gets paid from the funeral home which ultimately is a fee tacked on the "funeral bill" paid by the family. Transporting of the body from home, to funeral home (also included in charges of the funeral bill) If the patient died at home, there would be no coding unless there was an autopsy performed. Then, maybe I could see a UB04 being created in that instance. Again- I hope that helps.

    Courtney H
    - Gaithersburg, MD

  4. #4
    Courtney! Thank you so much for elaborating! That definitely helps. I searched, and searched! Thank you for letting me get a night's sleep.

    Take Care,

  5. #5
    Charleston, South Carolina
    Courtney, I am very curious about some of your comments. I worked for a family physician for eight years (who was also a county medical examiner). He would occasionally get a call to sign a death certificate from a funeral home for either a private patient of his, or someone he did death declaration on. The funeral home usually brought the death certificate to the office, the physician signed it and that was it. Never was my physician paid for signing the death certificate. This is just an administrative thing that has to be done. I find it a bit appalling that you state your funeral home billed the family for obtaining the doctors signature or on behalf of the doctor? I have worked in a couple of other states and have never heard of a physician either charging or being paid to sign a death certificate (even if it wasn't his patient, such as with the medical examiner cases).

    Machelle Morningstar, CPC, COC, CEMC, COSC
    AHIMA Approved ICD-10-CM/PCS Trainer

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