history of covid-19

COVID-19, or “Coronavirus Disease 2019,” is an infectious respiratory disease caused by the newly discovered Coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, that ranges from mild to no symptoms, to severe symptoms and death (CDC, 2020). As of April 30, there are 3,222,107 confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide, with 228,757 deaths and 992,592 recoveries (Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, 2020). Coronaviruses consist of a large family of viruses that commonly occur in humans and different species of animals, such as bats, cattle, cats, and more (CDC, 2020). Animal coronaviruses may infect and spread among humans in rare occurrences, such as the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China (CDC, 2020).

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The ICD-10-PCS Hot Topics Updated webinar reviews and clarifies some of the most challenging ICD-10-PCS procedure codes and ICD-10-PCS coding issues divided into 10-20-minute modules, including Aneurysms Background and Cerebral Aneurysms, Aortic Aneurysms, Control, Overview and Coding Applications for Vascular Access Devices, and Background and Coding Applications for Tunneled and Totally Implantable VADs. This learning path provides 2 CEU certificates after attaining a passing grade (2 AAPC CEUs and towards 2 AHIMA CEUs).

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Coding

Medical coding is the process of assigning numeric or alphanumeric codes to the diseases, injuries, treatments, and procedures that healthcare providers perform to record each encounter accurately and correctly bill the patient (Healthcare Business & Technology, 2019). Medical coding directly ties into medical billing, which includes “preparing billing claims and submitting them to insurance providers,” as noted in our previous article, “What Is Medical Coding and Billing? How Does It Streamline a Hospital’s Financial Performance?” Ensuring the encounter was coded correctly with the right terminology is essential for correct payment and an accurate patient medical history.

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The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) disease outbreak a public health emergency of international concern on January 30, 2020 (CDC, 2020). This outbreak of the respiratory disease caused by the novel (new) coronavirus was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. It has rapidly spread, and, according to the CDC, has been detected in 37 locations internationally, including cases in the United States. As a result of the public health emergency, the document, “Announcement New ICD-10-CM Code 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19),” was released to provide guidance on coding this virus.

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CPT Updates

CPT 2020 changes took effect on January 1, 2020. In Part 2, we continue with a discussion of revisions in the Evaluation and Management, and Medicine sections, along with an overview of updates in the Radiology, Pathology and Laboratory, and the new Category III codes.

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ICD-11

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently released the 11th edition of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). This release was presented at the World Health Assembly on May 25, 2019 for adoption by member states, and will come into effect on January 1, 2022. However, note that it is still unknown when ICD-11 will be ready for implementation in the United States.

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CPT Changes

As we turn the calendar to a new decade, the 2020 CPT code changes take effect. This year there are a total of 394 changes to CPT, bringing the total number of codes to 10,471. This includes 248 new codes, 71 deletions, and 75 code revisions, according to the American Medical Association (AMA). This is Part 1 of a 2-Part Series. In this article, we will discuss the changes in the Surgery Section.

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