Understanding Current CDT

April 2, 2019

The average general dental practice utilizes approximately 90 procedure codes.  Once you have reviewed the current CDT code set and how any changes may affect your coding protocol, update the codes in your practice management software.  Add only the codes that specifically apply to the procedure mix of your practice. Inactivate any deleted codes in your software to eliminate any coding errors from submitting deleted codes.  These types of coding errors can cause payment delays and are easily avoided. 

Educate your team.  The treating dentist listed on the claim form is ultimately responsible for ensuring all information reported is accurate.  Cross train your team.  Business team members need a basic clinical understanding of all dental procedures performed.  Basic clinical understanding of procedures will equip the team with knowledge of the  language included with EOBs, particularly in understanding necessary supporting documentation for initial claim submissions, appeals, and request for additional information from the payer.  Clinical team members need to understand coding as defined by CDT to ensure proper selection of CDT codes.  The clinical team does not need to be flawlessly knowledgeable of insurance, but a basic understanding of CDT is necessary. 

Now is the time to conduct annual team meetings to review the current CDT code set for 2019.  Invest in current coding and insurance administration resources for ongoing reference and training of current and new team members.  Utilize these resources and involve team members as needed when new dental procedures are added to your procedure mix. 

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Fixed Partial Denture Repair

A single cast metal crown restoration that is retained, supported and stablized by an abutment on an implant; may be screw retained or cemented.

NOTE: May be orthodontic related