CORRECT CODING – SURGICAL DRESSINGS CONTAINING MEDICAL HONEY


DME MAC Joint Publication

Medicinal use of honey has a long history with various health benefits ascribed to it. Recently the DME MAC Medical Directors requested information regarding the use of honey as a component in surgical dressings. We wish to thank all those who provided a response.

Historically medical honey has not been considered as a separate, covered surgical dressing component by Medicare. Dressings incorporating honey have been assigned HCPCS coding based upon the underlying covered elements. For example, an alginate dressing with honey is put into the same HCPCS codes as an alginate dressing without honey.

The DME MAC Medical Director Workgroup reviewed the clinical literature and other evidence in consideration of whether medical honey should be considered as a separate, covered component in surgical dressings. The workgroup determined that there is insufficient evidence to justify the conclusion that medical honey should be considered as a separate, covered component in surgical dressings. HCPCS coding for honey containing surgical dressings will continue as it has been in the past i.e. HCPCS coding is based upon the underlying covered components.

Refer to the Surgical Dressings Local Coverage Determination and related Policy Article for additional information about coverage and coding for surgical dressings.

For questions about correct coding, contact the PDAC Contact Center at (877) 735-1326 during the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. CT, Monday through Friday, or e-mail the PDAC by completing the DME PDAC Contact Form.

 

Published by Noridian as the PDAC, October 2014.  Republished by Palmetto GBA as the PDAC, February 2019.  Please note that links in this document were accurate at the time of original publication and may change over time and are no longer active



Last Updated: 10/01/2014