Pre-Payment Provider-Specific Probe Results for Outpatient HBO Therapy for September 2021 through March 2022

Published 05/06/2022

 Pre-Payment Provider-Specific Probe Results for Outpatient HBO Therapy in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee for September 2021 through March 2022

Palmetto GBA performed provider-specific pre-payment probe review on Outpatient HCPCS G0277 — Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. This edit was set in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. The results of the probe review for claims processed September 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022, are presented here.

Cumulative Results 
A total of 532 claims from 44 providers were reviewed in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee combined. Of the claims reviewed, 268 were either completely or partially denied. This resulted in an overall claim denial rate of 50 percent. The total dollars reviewed were $781,246.14, of which $322,452.47 were denied, resulting in a charge denial rate of 41 percent. There were 139 auto-denied claims in the region for September 2021 through March 2022. The top denial reasons were identified, and the number of occurrences based on dollars denied were:

Percent of Total Denials

Denial Code

Denial Description

Number of Occurrences

95%

5D164/5H164

No Documentation of Medical Necessity

254

2%

5D169/5H169

Services Not Documented

5

1%

5D920/5H920

The Recommended Protocol Was Not Ordered and/or Followed

4

1%

5D199/5H199

Billing Error for Hospital

4

0.4%

5D151/5H151

Units Billed More Than Ordered

1

Alabama Results
A total of 145 claims were reviewed, with 86 of the claims either completely or partially denied. This resulted in a claim denial rate of 59 percent. The total dollars reviewed were $244,702.52, of which $144,464.49 were denied, resulting in a charge denial rate of 59 percent. The top denial reasons were identified, and the number of occurrences based on dollars denied were:

Percent of Total Denials

Denial Code

Denial Description

Number of Occurrences

99%

5D164/5H164

No Documentation of Medical Necessity

85

1%

5D920/5H920

The Recommended Protocol Was Not Ordered and/or Followed

1

Georgia Results
A total of 221 claims were reviewed, with 112 of the claims either completely or partially denied. This resulted in a claim denial rate of 51 percent. The total dollars reviewed were $291,840.18, of which $112,238.42 were denied, resulting in a charge denial rate of 38 percent. The top denial reasons were identified, and the number of occurrences based on dollars denied were:

Percent of Total Denials

Denial Code

Denial Description

Number of Occurrences

92%

5D164/5H164

No Documentation of Medical Necessity

103

3%

5D199/5H199

Billing Error for Hospital

3

3%

5D169/5H169

Services Not Documented

3

2%

5D920/5H920

The Recommended Protocol Was Not Ordered and/or Followed

2

1%

5D151/5H151

Units Billed More Than Ordered

1

Tennessee Results
A total of 166 claims were reviewed, with 70 of the claims either completely or partially denied. This resulted in a claim denial rate of 42 percent. The total dollars reviewed were $244,703.44, of which $65,749.56 were denied, resulting in a charge denial rate of 27 percent. The top denial reasons were identified, and the number of occurrences based on dollars denied were:

Percent of Total Denials

Denial Code

Denial Description

Number of Occurrences

94%

5D164/5H164

No Documentation of Medical Necessity

66

3%

5D169/5H169

Services Not Documented

2

1%

5D199/5H199

Billing Error for Hospital

1

1%

5D920/5H920

The Recommended Protocol Was Not Ordered and/or Followed

1

Denial Reasons and Prevention Recommendations

5D164/5H164 — No Documentation of Medical Necessity

Reason for Denial
This claim was denied because the documentation submitted does not support the medical necessity of the service reviewed. The records did not contain any covered condition/indication, symptomology or diagnostic results that would support the service was reasonable and necessary for the treatment of the beneficiary.

How to Avoid This Denial

  • Submit all documentation related to the services billed which support the medical necessity of the services. Documentation should support:
    • A covered indication or condition for the service billed
    • A physician/NPP is managing the care of the covered indication or condition
    • Any medical history that supports a need for the service
    • Any diagnostic results or symptomology that supports a need for the service
  • A legible physician or nonphysician provider (NPP) signature is required on all documentation necessary to support medical necessity
  • Use the most appropriate ICD-10-CM codes to identify the beneficiary’s medical diagnosis

More Information

5D169/5H169 — Services Not Documented

Reason for Denial
This claim was partially or fully denied because the provider billed for services/items not documented in the medical record submitted.

How to Avoid This Denial

  • Submit all documentation related to the services billed
  • Ensure that results submitted are for the date of service billed, the correct beneficiary and the specific service billed
  • Ensure that the documentation is complete with proper authentication and the signature is legible

For more information, refer to: Code of Federal Regulations, 42 CFR – Sections 410.32 and 424.5.
 

5D920/5H920 — The Recommended Protocol Was Not Ordered and/or Followed

Reason for Denial
Medicare cannot pay for this service because one or more requirements for coverage were not met.

How to Avoid This Denial
Documentation that may be helpful to avoid future denials for this reason may include, but are not limited to, the following:

For Drugs and Biologicals

  • Clear physician’s order with indication of need, dose, frequency, administration time, and route 
  • Date and time of associated chemotherapy, as applicable
  • Relevant medical history documented prior to the DOS and signed by the physician or appropriate nonphysician provider to include, but not limited to:
    • Clear indication of the diagnosis and need for the related service(s)
    • Clinical signs and symptoms
    • Prior treatment and response as applicable
    • Stage of treatment as applicable
    • Documentation of administration and signed by the person providing the service
  • Ensure the service was provided per the coverage guidelines for the service

For Outpatient Therapy

  • Clear physician’s order with indication of specific skilled service, frequency and duration
  • Relevant medical history documented prior to the DOS and signed by the physician or appropriate nonphysician provider to include, but not limited to:
    • Clear indication of the diagnosis and need for the related therapy services 
    • Documentation related to the therapy services to include beneficiary's functional level, treatment plan, short- and long-term goals, beneficiary's response to therapy services, treatment and progress notes
    • Prior treatment and response as applicable
  •  Ensure the service was provided per the coverage guidelines for the service

For IMRT

  • Clear physician/radiation oncologist orders for radiation treatment course, including specific anatomical target volumes, treatment technique, current dosage, type of radiation measuring and monitoring devices to be used and treatment fields
  • Relevant medical history documented prior to the DOS and signed by the physician/radiation oncologist or appropriate nonphysician provider to include:
    • Clear indication of the diagnosis being treated and medical necessity of the services
    • Supporting reports such as dosimetry, physicist, simulation, oncology and radiology 
    • Documentation of design and construction of Multi-Leaf Collinator
    • Detailed itemized bill and supporting documentation of all billed services 
    • Documentation of treatment plan, including goals, treatment notes, specific dose constraints for the target and administration
  • Ensure the service was provided per the coverage guidelines for the service

More Information

5D199/5H199 — Billing Error

Reason for Denial
The services billed were not covered because the documentation provided did not support the claim as billed by the provider.

How to Avoid This Denial
To avoid future denials for this reason:

  • Check all bills for accuracy prior to submitting to Medicare
  • Ensure that the documentation submitted, in response to the ADR, corresponds with the date that the service was rendered, and the dates of service billed

More Information

5D151/5H151 — Units Billed More Than Ordered

Reason for Denial 
The medical record provided for the outpatient service did not support the number of units billed on the claim. Per the documentation more units were billed than provided.

How to Avoid This Denial
Under the Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS), when HCPC code reporting is required the number of times the service or procedure was performed or the amount of the service used must also be accurately reported in the service units.

  • For time-based general outpatient services, make sure the start and end time, or total length of the service is documented clearly in the record
  • For other general outpatient services, make sure the amount of the service is documented clearly in the record
  • When reporting drugs or biologicals make sure the amount of the drug given is clearly documented and properly converted into units when submitted for payment
  • For Outpatient Therapy services, make sure the timed treatment minutes for the timed services provided are documented clearly in the record

More Information

56900 — Auto Deny — Requested Records Not Submitted Timely 

Reason for Denial
The services billed were not covered because the documentation was not received in response to the Additional Documentation Request (ADR) and therefore, we were unable to determine the medical necessity of the service billed. The provider has 45 days from the date the ADR was generated to respond with medical records. If less than 120 days after denial notification on the remittance advice, submit records to the contractor requesting records at the address listed on the original Additional Development Request (ADR) to request reopening. Do not resubmit the claim.

How to Avoid This Denial

  • Be aware of the Additional Development Request (ADR) date and the need to submit medical records within 45 days of the ADR date
  • Submit the medical records as soon as the Additional Development Request (ADR) is received
  • Monitor the status of your claims in Direct Data Entry (DDE) and begin gathering the medical records as soon as the claim goes to the location of SB6001
  • Return the medical records to the address on the Additional Development Request (ADR). Be sure to include the appropriate mail code or station number. This ensures that your responses are promptly routed to the medical review department. Fax and electronic data submissions are also accepted as indicated on the Additional Development Request (ADR).
  • Gather all of the information needed for the claim and submit it all at one time
  • Attach a copy of the Additional Development Request (ADR) request to each individual claim
  • If responding to multiple Additional Development Requests (ADRs), separate each response and attach a copy of the ADR to each individual set of medical records. Make sure each set of medical records is individually identifiable and bound securely to ensure that no documentation is detached or lost. Do not use paper clips. 
  • Do not mail packages C.O.D.; we cannot accept them

More Information