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2024 CPT Code Changes: A Comprehensive Overview    

Watch the Anatomy of Coding 2024 CPT Code Changes on demand. Register here.
By: Paul Cadorette, CPC, COC, CPC-P, COSC, CASCC, Director of Education, nimble solutions

The 2024 CPT code changes gave us 349 editorial updates, including 230 additions, 49 deletions and 70 revisions. The entire code set now includes 11,163 CPT codes, and we expect it to continue to grow and evolve with the rapid pace of innovation in medical science and health technology. 

December is that wonderful time of year for ASC coders when we brace ourselves and ask: “What changes did CPT Santa bring us?”  

As we prepare for a new year, this is the crucial time to review your ASC’s coding practices to remain compliant with the most up-to-date information. 

Join me for the 2024 CPT Code Changes course, where I’ll explain these updates in detail. This blog post covers some of the significant CPT revisions I’ll be addressing.  

Category III Code Modifications 

The landscape of Category III codes saw significant alterations, with several deletions and the introduction of new codes.  

Notable among these changes were the replacements for codes related to Intra-articular placement of SI joint stabilization devices and phrenic neurostimulators. 

As you know, we currently have CPT and Category III codes for Percutaneous SI joint fusion procedures.  There’s a CPT code for transfixing device and Category III codes for intra-articular device placement as well as the “hybrid” technique, which is when both the transfixing and intra-articular procedures are performed.   

The change to this series of codes is that a new CPT code was developed for intra-articular device placement and the Category III code for the hybrid technique has been deleted.   

So, instead of three codes we will now only have two: 

  • 27278 for intra-articular placement 
  • 27279 for transfixing 

However, this shift raises the question: “How would you report a service where a hybrid technique was utilized since that Category III code has been deleted?”  

That’s one of the questions I’ll answer during the 2024 CPT Code Changes course. 

Neurostimulator Code Set

The neurostimulator code sets have extensive changes.  
For instance, among the many adjustments, integrated electrodes have their own specific CPT code set.  

You’ll now have to identify those neurostimulator electrodes that are considered “integrated” (the electrode contains a receiver and circuitry for power delivery) and to which devices this term would apply.  

Insights into Unlisted CPT Codes 

AMA guidelines historically state that when two services use the same unlisted CPT code, that specific unlisted code would only be reported one time. A CPT Assistant article from April 2001 details this clearly. 

Unfortunately, there have been mixed messages for unlisted codes; an AHA Coding Clinic allows for modifier usage, even though this is not within AMA guidelines.  

Moving forward, the reporting for unlisted codes is updated for 2024 as follows: 

  • When two unlisted services are performed at different anatomical sites you can report two unlisted codes, one for each different anatomical site.  
  • When two services are performed at the same anatomical site you can report the unlisted code twice and append modifier -59 to the second code. 

The role of modifiers within unlisted codes is also revised for 2024. 

Modifiers: Payment vs. information

Modifiers can be divided into two categories: a payment modifier and an informational modifier.   

An example of a payment modifier would be Modifier -52 Reduced service. This modifier should not be used with an unlisted code because an unlisted code does not describe a particular service. Without that information, there aren’t any procedural components associated with the code; therefore, there’s no way to tell which component(s) were reduced.   

On the other hand, informational modifiers such as RT/LT indicate laterality and modifier -59 distinct procedural service may be appended to unlisted CPT codes. 

Register for the 2024 CPT Code Changes Course

Stay ahead in the dynamic world of ASC coding by gaining insights from our comprehensive course.   

I hope you’ll join me and together we’ll decode these complexities for a seamless transition into the new coding era! 

This blog post outlines some of the topics covered in the 2024 CPT Code Changes coding course, available on demand with corresponding AAPC continuing education units included. 

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