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Important dates to negotiate, evaluate, educate, participate and associate!

The autumn season brings a flurry of activity for medical practices. Although contract changes and fee schedules may not take effect until January, now is the time to take a good look at payor contracts. Changes in language, reimbursement and other contract terms should be made in writing.

Automatically renewed contracts (also known as evergreen), be reviewed each fall. Many require any modifications or requests for changes to be made sixty (60) or ninety (90) days prior to the end of the year.

Once a contract is in place, it becomes non-negotiable for the agreed upon contract period. It is important to be aware of and meet all deadlines.

On October 1, 2012, physician practices must begin using the 2013 ICD-9 codes on all claims. Don't let your claims be rejected because you are using outdated or changed codes.

The WVSMA fall educational offerings include the Certified Medical Compliance Officer (CMCO) course, beginning September 17. Prior to this offering, the CMCO course was offered only in webinar format. WVSMA is the first state medical association to host a classroom course.

The second fall offering is the Certified Medical Coder course beginning October 26. The CMC course is a certification designed for physician-based coding professionals. Classes will cover Medical Terminology, ICD-9-CM Diagnostic Coding, ICD-10-Coding Conversion, HCPCS/CPT Procedural Coding, Ancillary and Advanced Coding. The program includes "hands on" classroom instruction, a course manual, homework exercises, an exam preparation handbook and the certification exam.

For more information and registration forms for both classes, please visit the WVSMA website,

Finally, remember that one of your most valuable practice tools is to associate. Remember, there is power in numbers! Whether you are a physician, a practice administrator, an office manager or a certified coder, there is great value to becoming a member of your association.

by Barbara Good, CMC, CMOM

Physician Practice Advocate, WVSMA

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Author:Good, Barbara
Publication:West Virginia Medical Journal
Article Type:Calendar
Geographic Code:1U5WV
Date:Sep 1, 2012
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