Medical Billing Codes - Helpful Coding Resources

By Alley Benton
Updated January 2, 2017
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Medical Billing Codes - Helpful Coding ResourcesWhenever a person receives any kind of medical treatment, including a diagnosis or the usage of medical supplies, medical billers and coders get to work on the administrative side of that. What they do is assign medical billing codes to each intervention, often using the well known CPT and ICD-10 codes, including the Medicare codes, psychiatric help codes, and dental codes. Generally speaking ICD-10, and to some degree still ICD-9, as well as CPT codes, are the ones that people look for.

The Different Medical Billing Codes:

There are lots of different coding resources available where all the various codes are listed according to the organization that maintains them. These include:

- The ICD-10 (and ICD-9) codes

- The CPT Codes and Modifiers

- The CDT Codes for dental work

- The Medicare billing codes

- The DRG Medicare codes

- The NDC drug codes

- The taxonomy codes

Many others exist, however, which is one of the reasons why the job of a medical biller and coder is incredibly complex. Their job ensures not just that medical records are up to date and contain a full history of every patient that a health care service has undertaken, but also that payments are received from the insurance companies for each procedure that is completed.

Most Commonly Used Medical Billing Codes:

There are quite literally thousands of medical codes out there. The ICD-9 was long the most popular, but this has recently been updated to the ICD-10, although quite a few healthcare organizations continue to refer to ICD-9. Hence, those are very popular and well known, as are the CPT-4 medical codes. Insurance companies use these in order to decide how much they will pay a provider back for the services that they performed for a patient. These codes are universal codes, which means they are the same across all health care providers and all health insurance companies all over the world use the same ones.

ICD is an acronym for "International Statistical Classification of Disease and Related Health Problems". CPT meanwhile, stands for Current Procedural Terminology. The World Health Organization publishes and updates the global ICD codes, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintains them on a natural level. The codes are all publicly available on the websites of these organizations. Additionally, all ICD codes are alphanumeric and they describe what the patients' symptoms are, what caused their symptoms to appear, and what procedures and treatment are offered for the patients.

CPT codes, meanwhile are maintained and assigned by the American Medical Association. They own the copyright to the codes, and they are only available at a fee through a licensed source. Like the ICD codes, CPT codes use alphanumerical sequences to described a procedure. The American Medical Association assigns these codes on a yearly basis, and they update them as well.

Medical billing codes, in a sense, keep the global health economy running. These codes are absolutely vital, therefore, and the role of coders is hugely important to ensure that services are paid as they should be.





* Disclaimer:
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.