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CDC Updates Coronavirus Reporting, Coding Systems

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has changed how it reports confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States and now will count patients who were repatriated by the Department of State separately from other cases.

Currently, CDC counts 39 patients who were repatriated, including 36 patients from the Diamond Princess cruise ship and three from Wuhan repatriation flights, and 14 U.S. cases. The agency will update these numbers every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Coding Updates

The World Health Organization has developed an emergency ICD-10 code for the coronavirus: U07.1, 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease. CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics will implement a new diagnosis code into the ICD 10th Revision, Clinical Modification, effective with the next update on Oct. 1. In the meantime, CDC issued interim coding guidance and guidelines for health care encounters and deaths related to COVID-19.

Additionally, CDC has developed a Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System code for health care providers and laboratories to test patients for SARS-CoV-2 (U0001). The Medicare claims processing system will be able to accept code U0001 beginning April 1, for dates of service on or after Feb. 4.

Visit the America’s Essential Hospitals coronavirus resource page for more information about the outbreak.

Contact Senior Director of Policy Erin O’Malley at or 202.585.0127 with questions.

About the Author

Emily Schweich is a communications manager at America's Essential Hospitals.

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