This article is part of a series devoted to changes to office and other outpatient evaluation and management (E/M) codes that will be implemented for services provided on and after January 1, 2021. These changes only affect codes 9920199205 and 9921199215 in 2021. In this article, we review the planned changes in how time is used in selecting office E/M codes, including prolonged office E/M services.

As noted in previous articles, code selection for office E/M services will be based on medical decision-making (MDM) or time for services provided in 2021. It is important that all physicians who report office E/M services understand how time will be used to select codes.

First, note that code 99201 will be deleted in 2021 and code 99211 (an E/M service provided by clinical staff) does not include the time of a physician or other qualified health care professional (QHP)....

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