What’s the news: The AMA has released the 2022 Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) code set, which incorporates a series of 24 vaccine-specific codes that are the model for efficiently reporting and tracking immunizations and administrative services against the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2).

CPT Code Revision Updates

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Working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop vaccine-specific CPT codes, the AMA introduced the first codes in the series for use in November 2020 to clinically distinguish each coronavirus vaccine and dosing schedule for better tracking, reporting and analysis of patient vaccinations. These CPT codes were available prior to the public availability of the COVID-19 vaccines to facilitate updating of health care electronic systems across the U.S.

In August, the AMA announced two vaccine-administration codes for use in reporting third doses of the COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna. And earlier this month, the AMA announced eight new vaccine-administration and vaccine codes to report the Pfizer tris-sucrose formulation and the Pfizer and Moderna booster shots.

Why it’s important: “Data-driven planning and resource allocation is vital for effective immunization programs that will bring the coronavirus pandemic to an end,” said AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, MD. “Correlating each coronavirus vaccine and dosing schedule with its own unique CPT code has provided necessary analytical advantages to help track, allocate and optimize resources for immunization programs across the United States.”

To help ensure accurate coding and reporting of COVID-19 vaccines and administration services, the AMA offers a vaccine code finder resource to help identify the appropriate CPT code combination for the type and dose of COVID-19 vaccine provided to each patient. The 2022 CPT code set also includes an appendix for one-stop access to all the codes for COVID-19 vaccine reporting.

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The COVID-19 vaccine and administration codes are among 405 editorial changes in the 2022 CPT code set, including 249 new codes, 63 deletions and 93 revisions. More than 40% of the editorial changes are tied to new technology services described in Category III CPT codes and the continued expansion of the proprietary laboratory analyses section of the CPT code set.

Other important additions to the 2022 CPT code set include the creation of five new CPT codes to report therapeutic remote monitoring, expanding on the remote physiologic monitoring codes that were created in 2020. The CPT Editorial Panel also created new codes for principal care management, which allow physicians and qualified health care professionals to report care management services for patients with one complex chronic condition.

Learn more: Changes to the CPT code set are considered through an open editorial process managed by the CPT Editorial Panel, an independent body convened by the AMA that collects broad input from the health care community and beyond to ensure CPT content reflects the coding demands of digital health, precision medicine, augmented intelligence and other aspects of a modern health care system.

To help the health care system in an orderly annual transition to a newly modified CPT code set, the AMA releases each new edition four months ahead of the Jan. 1 operational date and develops an insider’s view with detailed information on the new changes in the 2022 CPT code set.

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Stay up to date on the significant CPT code changes for 2022 by attending two virtual events this November, the Outpatient CDI Workshop and the CPT and RBRVS 2022 Annual Symposium. Learn more about these events and register now.

A special section for CPT education has been created for the AMA Ed Hub™, an online learning platform containing CME and education, including a module series covering an overview of CPT coding basics and other topics.

Coding books and products, including the CPT Professional 2022 codebook, are available from the AMA Storefront on Amazon. The 2022 CPT codes and descriptors can be imported straight into existing healthcare software solution using the downloadable CPT 2022 Data File.

The 2022 CPT coding content will also be included in an enhanced CPT/SNOMED CT map that links similar concepts shared by the two terminologies. The map is intended for use by organizations seeking to leverage both terminologies for research, population health, billing and analytics.

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