Alternatively, you could use 59899 (Unlisted procedure, maternity care and delivery). Because this is an unlisted-procedure code, you should include the operative note when submitting it to give the payer a clear picture of the procedure the ob-gyn performed.
Keep in mind that many carriers will not reimburse for this because it is an elective procedure requested by the patient. In fact, some coding experts maintain that you shouldn't separately report collecting cord blood at delivery. This is a minor procedure that is done at no cost to the physician, according to Philip Eskew, MD, medical director of women and infants' services at St. Vincent's Hospital's Family Life Center in Indianapolis, and Grace Kotowicz, a member of the AMA's CPT editorial staff, both speaking during the recent AMA CPT Symposium in Chicago. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' (ACOG) coding committee agrees with the AMA. Some Ob-Gyns Disagree Despite the AMA and ACOG's advice, some ob-gyns maintain that you can separately code for cord blood collection at delivery. "We do charge for this procedure [previously with 38231], and most insurance companies do cover this," says Edwin Radke, MD, a practicing ob-gyn at Andover Ob-Gyn in Andover, Mass. If the carrier doesn't cover the cord blood collection, Radke's practice informs the patient beforehand and charges her the fee. "After all, it is a voluntary and completely elective procedure," he says.
"Do not forget that this is a procedure involving not only time but also [...]