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Dermatology Coding Alert

Reader Question:

Start Using This Dx Code for Zika

Question: Is there an ICD-10 code for the Zika virus in the 2017 manual?

Massachusetts Subscriber

Answer: Yes, there is now a specific diagnosis code for Zika virus. When your provider has confirmed a case of the Zika virus, you’ll report A92.5 (Zika virus disease) to represent the condition. Prior to the release of this newcode, you’d likely have chosen A92.8 (Other specified mosquito-borne viral fevers) for a positive Zika diagnosis.

This diagnosis code didn’t quite fit the Zika virus, however, so the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) added A92.5 to its catalogue for 2017. With the arrival of A92.5, you needn’t worry about nebulous diagnosis coding for your Zika patients.

Remember:  ICD-10 2017’s final list of new, updated, and deleted codes for 2017 were effective October 1, 2016 — not January 1, 2017. So, if they haven’t already, practices need to get up to speed immediately on all the ICD-10 revisions, additions, and deletions relevant to their specialties.

And with that turn of the calendar came increased ICD-10 scrutiny from the Feds. Keep in mind that through September 2016, for auditing purposes, Medicare was only checking for ICD-10 accuracy to the point of the code family (the first three characters).

That level of understanding disappeared on Oct. 1, 2016, however.

Now, practices are “responsible for the accuracy of the specific diagnosis within the family to the highest character available,” says Gregory Przybylski, MD, director of neurosurgery at the New Jersey Neuroscience Institute, JFK Medical Center in Edison.

Check it out: To see a complete list of the 2017 ICD-10 code additions, deletions, and revisions, see www.cdc.gov/nchs/icd/icd10cm.htm.