Billing Massage Chair Use

November 19, 2010

Is there a CPT code for use of a massage chair?

Question: I am thinking of getting a massage chair to use in my office for patients with back pain. Is there a CPT code I can use when they use this? I’ll bill the ICD as 724.2. Will the insurance company pay?

Answer: There is a CPT code for therapeutic massage, 97124, but it requires direct contact - provider/patient - not a mechanical application of a given modality. The second question about whether the insurance company will pay has as many answers as there are insurance companies multiplied by the number of plans within them. Best bet? Poll your big payers to see if they would pay for it.

Bill Dacey, CPC, MBA, MHA, is principal in the Dacey Group, a consulting firm dedicated to coding, billing, documentation, and compliance concerns. Dacey is a PMCC-certified instructor and has been active in physician training for more than 20 years. He can be reached at billdacey@msn.com or physicianspractice@cmpmedica.com.

This question originally appeared in the May 2010 issue of Physicians Practice.