Psychologists: Most Commonly Used CPT Codes

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When it comes to receiving the proper reimbursement for the services performed at your behavioral health office, you need to make sure your staff is using the correct CPT codes. At the end of the day, your best option is to partner with a reliable medical coding and billing company. Check out these 12 medical billing services to help you get started with your search. This partnership will ensure that you are using the correct, up-to-date codes that meet all compliance regulations.

In the meantime, it never hurts to review some of the most commonly used CPT codes for psychologists. We will also list the some of the key 2018 updated codes.

*Before using these codes, please further verify that these codes are relevant to your state of practice. Please also refer to the AMA CPT manual to ensure that you are in compliance with all of the details related to the following codes.

90791 Psychiatric diagnosis evaluation. The evaluation includes a psychosocial history, current mental status, and recommendation. This can be followed up with the ordering of diagnostic studies and the approaches treatment recommendations. This can only be reported once a day per patient.

90792 Psychiatric diagnosis evaluation with medical services. This code involves medical services such as a physical examination or the prescription of pharmaceuticals. This again can only be reported once a day per patient. Communication with family members is included with this code and 90791.

90832 Psychotherapy (30 minutes) – These services usually involve an ongoing assessment and treatment interventions. You may involve informants (family members). A code’s stated time is relevant for face-to-face time with the patient. Do not add time that is spent with the informant. The patient must be present for all of the majority of the service. Refer to the AMA CPT manual for further details and time restriction rules.

90834 – Psychotherapy (45 minutes) – (The above 90832 details apply).

90837 – Psychotherapy (60 minutes) – (The above 90832 details apply).

90839 Psychotherapy for crisis (60 minutes) – This indicates an urgent and immediate assessment of a patient that presents a complex or life threatening problem. Services include a history of a crisis state, a mental status exam, and a disposition. 90840 is an “add-on” code for every additional 30 minutes of crisis psychotherapy.

New CPT code updates for 2018

Most notably, as of January 1st, 2018, G0502, G0503 and G0504 have been replaced by new CPT codes 99492, 99493 and 99494 for Psychiatric Collaborative Care Management Services. Again, a medical coding and billing company can provide you with the most relevant changes that may affect your practice.

There are a lot of codes with a lot rules attached to them, but don’t get discouraged. Start with the basics (such as the codes above) and move forward from there. The proper coding is essential to make sure you are receiving the correct reimbursements for the correct type of services. Again, it’s worth one last mention: partner up with a good medical coding and billing company.

For more tips and information on a variety of medical-related topics, don’t forget to check out the rest of the Clineeds blog.


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