Most physicians spend a good deal of time completing forms. Many practices even charge a nominal fee for completion of forms that occurs outside of an encounter (paid by the responsible party at the time of service). However, often the completion of an administrative form does require an encounter, and these encounters may represent services covered by the patient’s insurance plan. Some examples follow.

Jerry is a teenaged boy who plays basketball and who was seen in your office 4 days ago for treatment of a painful furuncle on his right thigh. The furuncle was lanced and antibiotics prescribed at the last encounter. Jerry presents now needing a form completed to allow him to return to basketball practice. The form indicates that the athlete cannot return to practice or competition until after 72 hours of treatment with antibiotics and all lesions has a well-adherent scab without drainage. A brief interval...

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