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Otolaryngology Coding Alert

Look Forward to More Work Values for Larynx, Neck and Throat Codes

CMS grants RVU hike, but most numbers fall short of requests You can anticipate a gain of 3-12 plus more work relative value units (RVUs) for 31360-31368, 31390-31395, 41115 and 42845.

This set of head and neck surgical codes went up significantly, says Charles F. Koopmann Jr., MD, MHSA, AAO-HNS coordinator for practice affairs and professor and associate chair at the University of Michigan's department of otolaryngology in Ann Arbor. -These had been undervalued for several years and were improved at the five-year review. Also, the nasal septoplasty (30520, Septoplasty or submucous resection, with or without cartilage scoring, contouring or replacement with graft) value was addressed in our favor- and increased from 5.69 RVUs to 6.85 RVUs -- a gain of 1.16.

Despite ENT work and practice expense (PE) changes increasing for some larynx, neck and throat surgery codes, the windfalls fell short of requested values from the American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgeons (AAO-HNS) and relative value update committee (RUC). Here's a snapshot of the changes for eight ENT codes:

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