Remark code MA55 indicates that the services billed are not covered because the patient has previously chosen to receive religious non-medical health care services, and by receiving medical health care services, they have automatically revoked this election. As a result, the billed services are not eligible for payment under the patient's current coverage terms.
Common causes of code MA55 are situations where a patient who had previously elected to receive religious non-medical health care services, such as care provided by Christian Science practitioners or facilities, subsequently receives traditional medical services. This change in the type of care revokes their initial election for religious non-medical care under certain insurance plans or government programs like Medicare. As a result, the services provided may not be covered by the patient's insurance plan due to this revocation, leading to the application of code MA55. Causes may include:
1. A patient inadvertently receiving medical services, perhaps in an emergency situation, without considering the impact on their coverage for religious non-medical health care.
2. A misunderstanding by the patient of their coverage limitations when electing religious non-medical health care services.
3. Administrative errors where medical services are billed for a patient under the assumption they are covered, without recognizing the patient's prior election for religious non-medical health care.
4. A change in the patient's decision to pursue medical health care services, which has not been properly communicated to their insurance provider.
Ways to mitigate code MA55 include ensuring accurate patient information is collected regarding their current healthcare coverage and benefits. Before providing services, verify the patient's election status for religious non-medical health care services through a thorough review of their insurance plan details. Maintain open communication with the patient to confirm their understanding of the implications of receiving medical health care services on their coverage. Additionally, implement a system to flag patient accounts that have elected religious non-medical health care services to prevent inadvertent service provision that could lead to this code being applied. Regular training for staff on the nuances of different healthcare coverage options can also help prevent this issue.
The steps to address code MA55 involve reviewing the patient's account to confirm the change in their election to receive medical health care services. If the services were indeed provided and the patient's election has changed, update the patient's records to reflect this. Communicate with the patient to ensure they understand the implications of their decision on coverage. If the services were billed in error, submit a corrected claim with the appropriate documentation to demonstrate that the patient has not revoked their election for religious non-medical health care services. Additionally, it may be necessary to coordinate with the patient's religious non-medical health care provider to ensure that all records are consistent and that the patient's wishes are being accurately represented and billed.