Hydration therapy

January 18, 2008
Virginia Martin, CPC, CHBC

The author, president of Healthcare Consulting Associates of N.W. Ohio Inc., has more than 30 years' experience as a practice management consultant, as well as being a certified coding specialist, certified compliance officer, and a certified medical assi

We're confused about billing chemotherapy hydration. Many times a patient will present in a very dehydrated state and require hydration therapy before we can begin infusion therapy. Other times, the hydration is part of the protocol for the infusion therapy. Is the coding different for these two scenarios?

We're confused about billing chemotherapy hydration. Many times a patient will present in a very dehydrated state and require hydration therapy before we can begin infusion therapy. Other times, the hydration is part of the protocol for the infusion therapy. Is the coding different for these two scenarios?

Yes. Code 90760 (intravenous infusion, hydration; initial, 31 minutes to 1 hour) should be used only when hydration is medically necessary but not required as part of the subsequent chemotherapy. Make sure you check how the insurer wants you to bill for this, such as listing the medically necessary hydration first or using a certain modifier.