AMA Wire

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

For Physicians

Model rule tackles medical billing for workers' comp

A model state regulation endorsed by the AMA is designed to save millions of dollars by automating the process for medical claims in the workers' compensation system.

The regulation offers an opportunity to improve efficiency and lower costs by moving workers' compensation medical claims to an electronic process. According to an insurance industry study, processing a paper claim is nearly twice as costly as processing an electronic one.

"Bringing the billing process for workers' compensation insurance into the electronic age will benefit physicians, employers, insurers and state governments," AMA Board Chair-elect Steven J. Stack, MD, said in a news release.

Developed by the International Association of Industrial Accident Boards and Commissions (IAIABC), this model rule is expected to reduce administrative costs and paperwork. California and Texas already have adopted rules based on this model, and other states, including Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina and Oregon, are moving in the same direction. The AMA is working with IAIABC and other medical associations to promote adoption of the model rule across the country.

Physicians can access the AMA's workers' compensation toolkit to learn more about taking advantage of the benefits of electronic billing and to find state-specific resources.

CPT® experts explain how to use modifier 59 correctly

A newly archived AMA webinar helps physicians and professional coders navigate the intricacies of reporting modifier 59.

Used to denote distinct, independent procedural services performed on the same day, modifier 59 is commonly misapplied. This 20-minute webinar is presented by AMA CPT® coding experts and explains the proper and improper uses of the modifier to help physicians avoid compliance issues and lost revenue.

View this and other archived AMA webinars on key practice management topics.