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Thread: When does a patient become "new" again?

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    My Brain Hurts OptiBoard Bronze Supporter jpways's Avatar
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    When does a patient become "new" again?

    For an uninsured patient how many years between exams before you treat them a new patient?

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    OptiWizard OptiBoard Silver Supporter
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    three years and one day (over three years) when you use the standard ICD-9 codes.

    Harry

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter Judy Canty's Avatar
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    They're never "new patients" again. They're old friends you haven't seen in a while. It's your opportunity to show how much you missed their patronage and to find out why they left.
    "Jargon is the last refuge of the scoundrel." --Roger Ebert

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    Master OptiBoarder TLG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuriousCat View Post
    They're never "new patients" again. They're old friends you haven't seen in a while. It's your opportunity to show how much you missed their patronage and to find out why they left.
    Oh yes they are...mainly because they're worth more $$$; 92004 vs 92014.

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter Judy Canty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpways View Post
    For an uninsured patient how many years between exams before you treat them a new patient?

    Even if they're uninsured?
    "Jargon is the last refuge of the scoundrel." --Roger Ebert

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter
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    Quote Originally Posted by CuriousCat View Post
    Even if they're uninsured?
    Like many things in our industry the definition of "New" (above) has been inherited from Medicare and copied by many other insurance companies, its not a "law" but could be part of your insurance contracts. If the patient is uninsured and you charge more for a "new" patient, then you are entitled to do so whenever you decide... as long as its consistant among ALL your patients. Consistancy in charging and billing (even when they're not insured) is very important to surviving an insurance audit and will save you a lot of grief in the long run. You don't say wether you accept Medicare? Even if this patient is uninsured, you have to bill and charge the same as if they were... not just in amounts, but in policy as well and if you take Medicare that often sets the policies for the entire practice.
    Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy ~Benjamin Franklin

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