CPT® Releases New Coronavirus (COVID-19) Code & Description for Testing

March 2020 ~

A new CPT® code has been created that streamlines novel coronavirus testing offered by hospitals, health systems, and laboratories in the United States.

The new code became effective March 13, 2020, for use as the industry standard for reporting of novel coronavirus tests across the nation’s health care system. NOTE: per the standard early release delivery process for CPT codes, providers will need to manually upload this code descriptor into their EHR system. This CPT code will arrive as part of the complete CPT code set in the data file for 2021 later this year.

The following codes were accepted at the special, expedited March 2020 CPT Editorial Panel meeting for the 2021 CPT production cycle. These codes are effective immediately on March 13, 2020.

Category I/Pathology and Laboratory/Microbiology

  • Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2): Long descriptor (PDF)
    • Addition of one Category I Pathology and Laboratory code (87635) for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-2-CoV-2)
      • NOTE: code 87635 will be a child code under parent code 87471
  • Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2): Medium descriptor (PDF)
    • Addition of one Category I Pathology and Laboratory code (87635) for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-2-CoV-2)
  • Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2): Short descriptor (PDF)
    • Addition of one Category I Pathology and Laboratory code (87635) for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-2-CoV-2)

CPT New Code Guidance

CPT Assistant is providing a special edition Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) fact sheet which provides guidance for coding and reporting of SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) laboratory tests.

The fact sheet includes:

  • Code, descriptor and purpose
  • A clinical example
  • Description of the procedure
  • FAQs

For more details pertaining to the introduction of the SARS-CoV-2 code, see the American Medical Association’s (AMA) COVID-19 testing: What you should know page.

CPT® is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association.
Source(s): American Medical Association;

 

 

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