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Official Coding Guidance for Reporting COVID-19

Official Coding Guidance for Reporting COVID-19 March 3, 2020

In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released Official Coding Guidance for reporting health care encounters related to the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

A new, specific ICD-10 diagnosis code will be included in the October 2020 update.  However, in the interim, the following guidance should be followed:

Condition ICD-10 Diagnosis Codes
Pneumonia, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J12.89, B97.29
Acute bronchitis, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J20.8, B97.29
Bronchitis NOS, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J40, B97.29
Acute/lower respiratory infection NOS, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J22, B97.29
Respiratory infection NOS, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J98.8, B97.29
Acute respiratory distress syndrome, confirmed as due to COVID-19 J80, B97.29
Possible exposure to COVID-19, condition ruled-out Z03.818
Exposure to confirmed COVID-19 Z20.828

Coders should follow the Official ICD-10 guidelines for guidance on sequencing, reporting signs and symptoms and reporting conditions stated as “suspected”, “possible” or probable”.

We recommend providing immediate training to your clinicians regarding proper documentation related to COVID-19.  We also recommend providing immediate training to your coders regarding proper ICD-10 assignment for encounters related to COVID-19.

To access the complete CDC update, go to: 
https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/icd/ICD-10-CM-Official-Coding-Gudance-Interim-Advice-coronavirus-feb-20-2020.pdf

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