In our practice, children with family history of cardiovascular disease or certain risk factors are screened for hyperlipidemia. The tests are not performed in our practice but at a laboratory. I am concerned that our electronic health record assigns code V77.91 when physicians enter an order for the tests. I am told this is useful in tracking this screening, but I don’t feel this code is appropriate because our practice is not performing the tests. Is it incorrect to report this code?

No. International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) guidelines state, “The V code indicates that a screening exam is planned. A procedure code is required to confirm that the screening was performed.” This indicates that code V77.91 may be reported when the screening test is ordered (ie, planned). However, this diagnosis code should be reported secondary to the code(s) representing the main reason for the encounter,...

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