Hepatitis C is a viral infection of the liver. Hepatitis C is the most common bloodborne pathogen and is the most common cause of death from an infectious disease. The Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) can cause chronic liver disease, liver cancer, cirrhosis, and death. Effective treatments do exist, but it is important to catch the presence of the infection so treatment can be initiated to prevent anything worse.
More than 4 million people in the United States have a past or current Hepatitis C infection. An estimated 71 million people suffer from a chronic HCV infection worldwide.
Oral direct-aging antivirals (DAAs) have become standard treatment for HCV, except during pregnancy. The biggest downside of DAAs is the costs, as they can cost up to $100,000 for a course of therapy. Antiviral medications can cure more than 95% of patients with Hepatitis C Infection, which is reducing the risk of death from cirrhosis and liver cancer.
New recommendations of screening aim to prevent the growing number of individuals with Hepatitis C Virus. The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued a draft recommendation statement for screening for HCV infection in adolescents and adults. This draft now suggests that all adults aged 18 to 79 years old should receive HCV screening. This expanded screening has the potential to catch early-stage infections and start treatments before complications from HCV begins.
When coding for HCV screening, use HCPCS Level II code:
G0472 Hepatitis C antibody screening, for individual at high risk and other covered indication(s)
If the patient is high-risk, the HCPCS Level II must also be accompanied by ICD-10 code:
Z72.89 Other problems related to lifestyle
For any age-related screenings, you need to report ICD-10 code:
Z11.59 Encounter for screening for other viral diseases
For more ICD-10 Codes used with the management of patients with Hepatitis C, refer to this list from Gilead Sciences: https://www.cvph.org/data/files/mysupportpath.pdf