Palliative Care Coding

Finding, hiring and maintaining a quality Palliative Care coder can be challenging and costly.  Some of the difficulties that arise include:

Finding a coder with Palliative Care experience:

  • Are there coders in my area?
  • Are they certified? Experienced? Reliable? Accurate?
  • How do I determine their skill level?
  • Do they have a background in coding specifically for Palliative Care physicians?

Paying a Palliative Care Coder

  • Includes the following costs:
    • Salary
    • Benefits, i.e. health insurance, PTO, disability insurance, Workers Compensation, unemployment insurance
    • Payroll taxes
    • Office space and equipment
    • Ongoing education
    • Coding Resources, i.e. books and software

Training, Auditing, & Managing a Palliative Care Coder

  • Requires hours of office time to keep up with Palliative Care coding changes and updates
  • Access to newsletters and journals with up-to-date information on coding for Palliative Care
  • Periodic compliance and accuracy audits of their coding
    • Remedial action in the event of a poor audit result
  • Time and effort to manage the coders
  • Dips in revenue cycle due to illness, maternity leave, and vacation

Palliative Care Coder Turnover

  • Good Palliative Care coders are in high demand and can easily be hired away
  • All of your prior investment needs to be replicated
  • Dips in your revenue stream and a backlog build up while searching for a replacement

The Coding Network has the means to help alleviate these concerns.

Finding a Palliative Care Coder

The Coding Network draws from a national labor pool.  This allows us to hire Palliative Care coders irrespective of where they are situated within the United States.  The Coding Network has very stringent standards for our team of coders.  We require:

  • Have a minimum of 3 years Palliative Care coding experience
  • Be certified by either AAPC, RCCB, AHIMA and/or ACMCS
  • Live and work in the United States

If a coder meets these requirements then we provide them with our Palliative Care proficiency exam.  The Coding Network realizes that merely having the requisite credentials and background in Palliative Care coding does not equate to accurate and high-quality coding.  Therefore, we have developed our own Palliative Care entrance exam, comprised of real-life, de-identified Palliative Care services from our clients.  We have discovered that experienced, certified coders sitting for our exams pass less than half the time.

Paying for Palliative Care Coding

The Coding Network takes the fixed cost of hiring a coder and turns it into a variable cost based on volume.  We charge a flat fee on a per case/encounter basis.  On average, it is cheaper to utilize our services than hiring a Palliative Care coder of your own (for more information on this, click here).  Most importantly, we require no minimums or retainers.  This structure allows you to maintain total managerial and financial control.

Training, Auditing, & Managing a Palliative Care Coder

Before joining our team, all of our Palliative Care coders must have 3 years prior experience in Palliative Care coding.  Then, once they have become a Coding Network coder, all of their work will be individually reviewed by a Palliative Care coding trainer for their first year.  Additionally, we assist in their continuing education by providing:

  • Updates from national and regional Palliative Care conferences
  • Access to journal and newsletters with Palliative Care coding information
  • Access to multiple online tools and resources to keep abreast of changes
  • All Palliative Care coders are provided with changes and updates when they occur

As part of our ongoing QA program, we audit a random sampling of each Palliative Care coder on a quarterly basis.  Each Palliative Care coder must code at a 90% accuracy level or face dismissal.  This allows us to hold our coders to a higher standard than most practices can afford to.

We remove the headache of having to manage another member of your staff.  However, you will feel as though our Palliative Care coder is a member of your team.  We provide you with direct access to your own personally assigned coder or team of coders.

Palliative Care Coder Turnover

In the event that your Coding Network assigned coder(s) becomes ill or goes on vacation, you will immediately be provided with a backup.  This removes the concern of dips in your revenue stream while a coder is out as well as the pain of replacing a departed coder and starting the whole process over.

Handling Your Palliative Care Coding Needs

Since The Coding Network charges on a per operation/encounter basis, you can determine the amount of coding that we perform for you. We have the ability to code all of your cases, just a portion, or on an as needed basis.  We have even coded just one operation for clients before!  For group practices, we can code for one doctor, multiple doctors or all doctors on a permanent or on an as needed basis.  If there are multiple specialties in your practice, we can handle all or only certain selected specialties.

Using The Coding Network to handle your Palliative Care coding needs can easily and painlessly be integrated into your daily workflow.  We work with you to find the most convenient HIPAA secure method to access your records remotely.   Current means that we employ to access medical records include (but are not limited to):

  • Secure remote servers
  • Tap directly into your EMR
  • Secure email
  • Fax

Building Trust with Your Coding Network Palliative Care Coder

You will be assigned either a coder or team of coders (depending upon your needs), who will effectively become a part of your team. You will have direct access to your Palliative Care coder, making it easy to get questions answered, voice your concerns, and receive feedback on your documentation.  If your assigned Palliative Care coder is sick or goes on vacation you will automatically be assigned a temporary Palliative Care coder to assist your staff while they are out.

In the 1st quarter of 2014, The Coding Network will begin offering ICD-10 Palliative Care gap analysis as well as Palliative Care specific documentation training for physicians. We will also begin ICD-10 Palliative Care coding and auditing in October 1, 2014. To learn more about our ICD-10 service offerings, click here.

To get started or learn more call (888) CODE-MED or click on the following link:

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