The key to selecting the right code when your gastroenterologist performs a fecal occult blood test (FOBT) is identifying the purpose of the test. Read on to ensure FOBT claims success.
82270 Is For Colorectal Cancer Screening
If your gastroenterologist provides a take-home FOBT to the patient for the purpose of colorectal cancer screening, report the procedure with 82270 (Blood, occult, by peroxidase activity [e.g., guaiac], qualitative; feces, consecutive collected specimens with single determination, for colorectal neoplasm screening [i.e., patient was provided 3 cards or single triple card for consecutive collection]). The patient carries the test cards and obtains consecutive samples himself and then returns with the cards or mails the cards back to the office. You should report the FOBT on the day the sample cards are received in your office.
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Remember: Though the patient tests three different stool samples with either three separate single test cards or on a single triple card, you should not report 82270 for each of the samples. Regardless of the number of samples the patient returns with, you still continue to code only one unit of 82270.
“Also keep in mind that the guideline from the United States Preventative Health Task Force only recommends FOBT testing for colorectal cancer screening once per year,” says Michael Weinstein, MD, Gastroenterologist at Capital Digestive Care in Washington, D.C., and former representative of the AMA’s CPT® Advisory Panel. “You should expect a denial if the code is used before...
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