Roy Shelburne

Dental Coaching Institute Consultant

2022 CDT changes to codes currently in progress

What is the code maintenance committee?

The Code Maintenance Committee (CMC) is a committee charged with evaluating and voting on CDT changes while maintaining the best interests of the dental profession, patients, and third party payers and administrators. The CMC consists of 24 voting members and is chaired by one of the five American Dental Association (ADA) committee members. The committee members also include one voting representative from each of the 12 dental specialty organizations, the Academy of General Dentistry, the American Dental Education Association, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, the National Association of Dental Plans, America’s Health Insurance Plans, Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, and Delta Dental Plans Association.

Code change requests for 2022

The 2020 Code Maintenance Committee (CMC) met on March 11 & 12, 2021 and have reviewed and acted on the many code change requests for the Current Dental Terminology (CDT) for 2022. All dental claims for services performed must utilize the appropriate code from the CDT to meet HIPAA requirements. CDT codes provide a standardized language for dental teams to clearly communicate with patients about proposed dental procedures, accurately document the dental services performed, appropriately bill patients for services rendered, and accurately communicate with third party payers about the dental treatment submitted for reimbursement.

Simplifying dental coding reimbursement

The existence of a code (new or established) does not imply that it will be considered for reimbursement by dental plans. While dental plans are required under HIPAA to recognize current CDT codes when submitted on claims, they are not required to pay them. The dental services covered by one patient’s dental plan may not be covered by another.

Staying up-to-date with dental coding changes

What hasn’t changed? Coding guidelines require that the most specific current CDT code be used to document and report the procedure performed. Dentists need CDT codes to document and report accurately what they do. Subscribe to this blog to stay up-to-date on the 2021 code changes.


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