CMS Approves New ACHD Specialty Designation Code

A new designation for "Adult Congenital Heart Disease (ACHD) Specialists" has been approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The ACC requested this new designation code, which will allow CMS to distinguish ACHD Specialists from clinical cardiologists when billing for Medicare services. Previously, no mechanism existed for CMS to accurately identify this category of physician for quality and payment programs.

"Without a specifically identified adult congenital cardiology specialty code, ACHD cardiologists are evaluated and measured as either general internal medicine or pediatric cardiologists and unable to separate quality measures and outcomes important for improving care, and unable to bill as a separate subspecialty," ACC's original comments stated.

"Gaining approval for the CMS ACHD specialty code will open to door to ACHD program growth and development, and with this, improve access and delivery of high quality ACHD care throughout the U.S.," said Curt J. Daniels, MD, FACC, director of the Columbus Ohio Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program. "Thank you to the ACC and their incredible advocacy and partnership with ACHD providers to achieve this important milestone."

CMS will now take the necessary steps to create and implement the new code, which commonly takes six months or more to complete. The College is closely monitoring the code's implementation and will share updates as they are available.

Keywords: ACC Advocacy, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S., Medicare, Specialization, Medicaid, Quality Indicators, Health Care, Heart Defects, Congenital

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