The chargemaster (also known as the charge description master or CDM) plays a critical role in the financial health of every U.S. hospital. Data contained within the CDM allows the services provided by clinicians in your facility to be translated into the language of codes and charges required by all payors. Any errors in this data can lead to missed reimbursement, incorrect bills and compliance risks. Therefore, a CDM Review should be conducted annually, at a minimum. More frequent reviews may be needed for high-dollar and/or high-volume areas, like Pharmacy or the Emergency Room. Other common triggers for a CDM Review include the addition of a new hospital or department, an EMR or patient financial system conversion or staffing changes.
Leading the CDM Review process for your organization can be a daunting task.
Many organizations find it beneficial to partially or completely outsource their CDM maintenance to a dedicated chargemaster consultant, or regularly invest in a one-time CDM Review service engagement.
Following the steps outlined below will ensure a clean, complete and compliant CDM for your organization.