Reimbursement Advisor

Assessing fetal scalp pH levels


Q Is there any additional billing when a fetal scalp pH is taken at the time of delivery?

A CPT lists code 59030 (fetal scalp blood sampling) as a billable service outside of the global obstetric package. However, some payers may decide this test is inessential if your documentation does not support its medical necessity. Be sure, therefore, that your diagnostic coding is in order.

This article was written by Melanie Witt, RN, CPC, MA, former program manager in the Department of Coding and Nomenclature at ACOG. She is now an independent coding and documentation consultant. Her comments reflect the most commonly accepted interpretations of CPT-4 and ICD-9-CM coding. When in doubt on a coding or billing matter, check with your individual payer.

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