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Types of ICD Codes Used in Medical Billing

As a medical billing professional, you will need to become familiar with the ICD coding system. The international classification of diseases (most commonly known as ICD) classifies any disease or health problem you code. Basically, ICD is the common system of codes that you use everyday in your billing and coding work. Each diagnosis code provides a general description of the disease or injury that led to the patient/physician encounter.

ICD codes are divided into two categories:

  • ICD-CM (clinical modification): Clinical modifications are diagnosis codes that all healthcare providers use.

  • ICD-PCS (procedure coding system): The procedure codes are used only for inpatient reporting (hospital billing and coding).

These codes are not only used by billers and coders when they fill out claim forms, but they’re used by others to classify diseases and other health problems on many types of health records, including death certificates, to help provide national mortality and morbidity rates.

WHO uses the data gleaned from the codes you submit to analyze the health of large population groups and monitor diseases and other health problems for all members of our global community. For your purposes, you can think of the ICD codes as the language you speak to communicate with organizations like WHO so that they can keep the world healthy.

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