Q&A: CPT coding for US guidance used during an embryo transfer

December 6, 2019
Medicare Web

Q: What is the appropriate CPT code to use for ultrasound (US) guidance during an embryo transfer procedure? 

A: Embryo transfer is typically performed using tactile senses and judgment to determine when the transfer catheter is in the correct position. This method is referred to as “clinical touch.” Alternatively, US imaging can be used to guide placement of the catheter during an embryo transfer. US guidance may be reported in conjunction with other procedures, when appropriate, using CPT code 76998 (US guidance, intraoperative).

To be reimbursed for this code, the physician must perform a separate interpretation of the US. If there is no hard copy or stored digital image of the US, the service is not billable. A US report in the medical record is also required for the provider to receive reimbursement for this service.

Editor’s note: Lori-Lynne A. Webb, CPC, CCS-P, CCP, CHDA, COBGC, ICD-10-CM/PCS ambassador/trainer and an E/M, and procedure-based coding, compliance, data charge entry and HIPAA privacy specialist in Melba, Idaho answered this question during the HCPro webinar, 2020 ICD-10-CM/CPT Reporting for Obstetrical Services. She can be reached at webbservices.lori@gmail.com or http://lori-lynnescodingcoachblog.blogspot.com/.

This answer was provided based on limited information. Be sure to review all documentation specific to your own individual scenario before determining appropriate code assignment.

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