Coding Guidelines for Coronavirus by CDC
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On February 20, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued guidance on diagnosis coding for reporting COVID-19. This disease and related conditions may be coded with existing ICD-10-DM codes, following the general guidelines that are currently in place.

The code for the coronavirus is B97.29 (other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere). Experienced coders know that the definition's inclusion of the words "diseases classified elsewhere" means the other disease is used in the first position on the claim form. The CDC specifically says not to use B34.2 (coronavirus infection unspecified) because the known cases have all been respiratory in nature and B34.2 is unspecified.

The CDC guidance provides specific examples for patients with conditions caused by the coronavirus. Notice that all of these examples are for conditions confirmed as due to COVID-19.

-- Pneumonia, confirmed as due to COVID-19
J12.89: other viral pneumonia
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere

-- Acute bronchitis, confirmed as due to COVID-19
J20.8: acute bronchitis due to other specified organisms
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere

-- Bronchitis, not specified as chronic or acute, confirmed as due to COVID-19
J40: bronchitis, not specified as acute or chronic
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere

-- Lower respiratory infection, confirmed as due to COVID-19
J22: unspecified acute lower respiratory infection
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere
or
J98.8: other specified respiratory infection
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere

-- Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) cases, confirmed as due to COVID-19
J80: acute respiratory distress syndrome
B97.29: other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere

Coding for the new coronavirus doesn't involve new codes or require learning new coding conventions. Follow these current guidelines: Code for confirmed conditions, use the presenting coding in the first position on the claim form (pneumonia, bronchitis, etc.), and use the code for coronavirus in the second position.

Source: https://www.cdc.gov
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