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Anesthesia Coding Alert

You Be the Coder:
Splitting Locum Duties Between 2 Providers

Question: I know that CMS allows you to use locum tenens providers after a physician leaves a group practice for 60 days while you search for a replacement. Our physician who performed both anesthesia and pain services left, and we currently have two locums working in her place: one for anesthesia and one for pain management. If both locum physicians work the same day, how should we handle the billing? New Hampshire Subscriber Answer: Your first step is to ensure that the circumstances meet all required elements for reporting locum tenens services. According to a Medicare NHIC bulletin from February, 2007, "the group must keep on file a record of each service provided by the substitute physician, associated with the substitute physician's UPIN, and make this record available to the carrier upon request." Next, keep a record of each patient (both anesthesia and pain management) seen by each of the [...]

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