Don't lose money on filling out forms

Insurers usually will reimburse physicians for filling out forms, such as home health plans, that require a significant investment of time.


Does it seem like you have more and more forms to complete on behalf of your patients? Much of the time physicians spend on patients' paperwork is uncompensated by insurers because it's considered part of the evaluation and management (E/M) work that preceded it. However, insurers usually will reimburse physicians for filling out forms, such as home health plans, that require a significant investment of time.

The list of services bundled into E/M varies based on state and the insurer, but may include such common services as prescription refills and preauthorizations. While the systems vary, they are all based on CPT, which all insurers use in some way. Each insurer interprets the level of bundling differently. Here are two examples of situations where billing may be justified:

Home health plans. Certification and recertification of home health plans require an extensive review of records. As long as you keep a copy of the plan or some other sort of documentation, you can bill Medicare for this service. Specific codes, documentation requirements and payouts are available.

Copies of records. In the vast majority of cases, physician practices may charge for these copies. Again, it varies by state. Many states have laws that set out the maximum fee while others don't allow it at all. In states where it is allowed, practices should have a posted fee schedule made available to patients for administrative services such as form completion and record copying, in addition to all medical services.