April 1, 2020

EMSOW Weekly Newsletter – April 1, 2020


Hope you’re well. Meanwhile, radiologists have to use WhatsApp to gather second opinions. During this restless time, patients should be treated by whatever means necessary. However, there are also special-purpose solutions, HIPAA-compliant and way more convenient.


[#19917] Remove sent invoices

Now you can remove sent invoices. This can be useful if you have created an invoice with an error and need to replace it. Follow the path: Billing > Invoices. Select the required invoice, click Remove selected, then click Yes in the confirmation window.


[#19901] Change a referring facility from the Dispatch Module

The new version of EMSOW allows our users to change the referring facility for an exam record right from the Dispatch module. Go to the Dispatch module, select the needed service, and click Edit. The Edit service window will open. Change the referring facility in the corresponding field. If the service is scheduled for the future, the technologist who is assigned to the case will receive an updated dispatch notification.

[#19888] Send studies for reading from Dispatch and Technologist Portal without additional confirmation

Now, when you click the Reading button in the Dispatch module or the Technologist Portal, the “Send all” checkbox will be selected automatically, so that you do not forget to deliver images to a radiologist in time.

[#19887] Add the FY billing modifier to studies with CR images

We have increased the automation of your billing management. From now on, the system will automatically add the FY billing modifier (“X-ray taken using computed radiography technology/cassette-based imaging”) to studies with Computed Radiography (CR) images.

[#19882] Improved End of Month reporting

We have enhanced the functionality of the End of Month (EoM) report. Now you can disable the Primary insurance, the Primary member ID, and the CPT code columns. Also, you can include in your report the Branch, Modality, and Finalized date columns by checking the corresponding boxes in the Print End of Month Report window.


[#19880] Dispatch performance report

This new report allows you to track the performance of your Dispatch users. Go to the Dispatch module and click the Performance report button. In the window that opens, select a date or a date range and run the report. An Excel file that includes patient and exam data and the names of users who created those exams will be downloaded to your computer.


[#19855] Add billing modifiers from the Processing module

In the new version of EMSOW, you can add billing modifiers to studies from the Processing module. Start creating a service or open the Edit service window. Click on the “arrow” button in the Studies section and select Edit billing modifiers list in the dropdown menu. In the window that opens, enter the required modifiers, then click Save. Please note that changing these modifiers after creating a claim will have no effect, as this feature is supposed to be used before you click the Auto-fill button.


[#19813] Assign referring contracts to accounts and create invoices for them

Now you can assign referring contracts to accounts (along with referring facilities). This can be used if you have a group of facilities that need to receive a collective invoice. Please note that this option will be unavailable if the contract is specified for both an account and a facility that is part of that account.

[#19900] Use branch links in EMSOW Mobile Pro

If a user is linked to branches in the Users module, they will be able to view only the orders for these branches in our iOS application.

March 26, 2020

COVID-2019: Coding Challenges and Practice Pitfalls


Discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan (Central China), a new сoronavirus infection named COVID-19 has rapidly spread to the rest of the world and become the first global pandemic of the 21st century. On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the 2019 Novel сoronavirus (2019-nCoV) disease outbreak a public health emergency of international concern. The official name of the disease was announced on February 11, 2020.

As we write this article, there are about 500,000 confirmed cases; over 65,000 have occurred in the USA. Fatality rate has already exceeded 7% in Italy, and the situation is provoking worldwide panic and affecting businesses, the consumer goods market, and the healthcare industry.

This time we will try to look at the situation from the medical business point of view and discuss the coding and billing aspects of COVID-19. What are the ICD codes for the coronavirus, are they billable, and how can you improve your coding and billing processes in the current situation?

According to the 10th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10), there are two emergency codes for COVID-19: U07.1, which is assigned to a disease diagnosis of COVID-19 confirmed by laboratory testing, and U07.2, assigned to a clinical or epidemiological diagnosis of COVID-19 where laboratory confirmation is inconclusive or not available.

However, in the USA, there are currently no specific ICD-10 codes to use when billing for services related to COVID-19. The U07.1 code will be added to the U.S. ICD-10-CM list effective April 1. Starting on that day, U07.1 should be used to report a patient who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Until then, the CDC is giving the following guidance:

For a diagnosis of COVID-19, report the code for the patient condition that is related to the COVID-19 (e.g., J12.89, “Other viral pneumonia”) and B97.29, “Other coronavirus as the cause of diseases classified elsewhere.”

To make a long story short, U07.1 is considered for confirmed cases only, and is not available to bill until April 2020, while B97.29 is the diagnosis code providers should use for confirmed cases through March 31, 2020. However, healthcare providers who work with Medicaid should refer to the Medicaid billing guidance for COVID-19 Evaluation and Testing.

Please note that if the provider documents “suspected”, “possible” or “probable” COVID-19, you should not assign the B97.29 code.

As for ICD-11, which will come into effect on January 1, 2022, the confirmed diagnosis is coded as RA01.0 and the suspected or probable diagnosis as RA01.2.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) introduced the first HCPCS code, U0001, to bill for tests and track new cases of the virus. Another HCPCS code, U0002, allows laboratories to bill for non-CDC laboratory tests for the coronavirus. CMS experts believe that specific codes will encourage testing and improve tracking. Medicare will be able to accept these codes on April 1 for dates of service starting from February 4.

COVID-19 puts forth organizational and institutional problems and dramatically affects the healthcare industry. Under the current conditions, coding, billing, and medical practice itself become more challenging than ever, but you can get some support from healthcare software. Here is a couple of ideas:

  • Advanced EMR or billing solutions help you populate codes correctly. You can start entering the code or simply a keyword, and the system will give you a hint by displaying a dropdown menu.

You can also automate your claim generation process, which is quite possible with modern medical billing platforms. This can help you overcome the personnel shortage and considerably speed up your revenue cycle management.

  • Telemedicine, including televisits and phone consultations can help you practice social distancing and avoid unnecessary personal contacts.

IT solutions designed for medical businesses can help you focus on the health of your patients, which should be the only challenge nowadays, whatever the situation turns out to be.

It is on you to take care of them, so take care of yourselves, too.

March 26, 2020

EMSOW Weekly Newsletter – March 19, 2020

COVID-19: EMSOW Update

HealthExec: “CMS conducted an inspection of a nursing home based in Kirkland, Washington, the Life Care Center, considered to be the epicenter of the state’s outbreak of the new coronavirus, COVID-19.

Over a course of several weeks, two-thirds of the nursing home’s residents fell ill with COVID-19, as well as 47 workers. Overall, 35 people have died from the virus, exemplifying a worst-case scenario of the disease. COVID-19 disproportionately impacts the elderly by causing more severe illness and often requiring intensive care.”

We hope that our newsletter finds you well, and the self-assessment tools, discussed in the article, would help to control the threat.

EMSOW Release

[#16154] HIPAA Privacy Policy Notice

We have added a HIPAA Privacy Policy Notice for new EMSOW users. It will appear when they login to their EMSOW domain for the first time. To proceed, a user needs to accept it.


Read the notice carefully, check the Agree box, then click OK.

You can make the new users accept the HIPAA agreement by checking the corresponding box in the “Create new record” window of the Users module or disable this feature by unchecking it.

Also, under this checkbox, you will find the Force to change password checkbox, which was previously located at the bottom of the window.


March 19, 2020

EMSOW Weekly Newsletter – March 19, 2020

COVID-19: EMSOW Update

Dear EMSOW customers and business owners!

We hope this newsletter finds you well. Here at EMSOW, we are closely monitoring the situation with COVID-19. We are strictly observing the health authorities’ recommendations and do everything we can to keep our team healthy and our customers timely supported. EMSOW, as well as our customer service, will operate as normal. You can count on us 24/7.

EMSOW Release

[#19843; #19739] Reschedule dispatched exams

Now you can change service dates right in the Dispatch module. Double-click on a service, then enter the required dates in the Order date and Date of Service fields.


Moreover, we have improved the automation of your scheduling management. If you move a service from the Dispatch module to another date, the system will automatically create the corresponding event in the Schedule module. If there are no orders for this date, an order and an event will be created. This feature will not be activated, if the event has been canceled.

[#19830] Referring groups in Billing Rules, Transportation and Setup rules

We have extended the functionality of EMSOW’s Billing, Transportation and Setup rules, by adding the Referring groups condition. To add it to a rule, click on the “Plus” button in the Add new rule or Edit rule window.


[#19806] Billing state field in referring facilities

Now you can indicate billing states for referring facilities according to Medicare localities. Follow the path: Setup > Referring > Referring facilities. Start adding a new facility or editing an existing one. In the Billing tab of the window, you will find the Billing state field. Start entering the state or select it from the dropdown menu.


Then, you can filter services in the Billing module by Referring billing state. Use the corresponding filter in the Referring doctor section of the Options pane.

March 12, 2020

EMSOW Weekly Newsletter – March 12, 2020

Modality Worklist: A Brief Introduction for Beginners

Check out our introductory article about the Modality Worklist on Medium. The Modality Worklist (or MWL) is a feature of the DICOM protocol that allows you to transfer procedure lists to be performed from a PACS server to your diagnostic equipment. Being a comprehensive yet user-friendly and intuitive solution, EMSOW supports this functionality.

EMSOW Release

[#19755] Technologist Portal will warn the user if the DICOM patient name does not match the patient name from Dispatch

We have decreased the risk of human error in the Technologist portal. Now, if you attach images to studies by using the drag-and-drop function and the patient name in the images does not match that in the dispatch entry, the system will warn you with a confirmation window.


[#19754] Social Security Number in the Portable Services Requisition form

We have added the Social Security Number (SSN) field to the Portable Services Requisition form, which you can print from the Billing module.


[#19751] Keep the state of the Worksheet filter in the Technologist Portal

We have improved the search functionality of the Technologist Portal by adding a stateful Worksheet filter. It is located under the Group by filter in the Options panel and contains the following options: Saved, Not saved, and All. The stateful filter “remembers” the search condition used in the previous search, so you can set up your portal to display studies without a saved worksheet at all times.


[#19752] New stateful filters in the Dispatch module

We have added new stateful filters to the Dispatch module. They include the following search options: Dispatch stage, Critical Findings, Priority, Branches, Referring facilities, Technologists, Modalities, Hide items flagged as “phoned”, Hide items with delivered reports, Hide items flagged as confirmed by technologist, and Show cancelled items. Check the needed box once, and the system will remember your choice for all the future searches!


[#19798] Self-payment option in Referring Contracts

We have added the Self checkbox to referring contract conditions so that you could apply them to self-pay patients. EMSOW considers a patient self-pay if there is no insurance specified for him or her. To use this option, follow the path: Setup > Billing > Referring contracts. Create a new contract or start editing an existing one.


[#19753] Charge percentage in Referring Contracts

Another improvement in the Referring Contracts functionality is the percentage field (displayed as %:). This field is used to apply a percentage to the Charge based on field that allows you to reference an insurance company’s fee schedule in your contracts.