A new government law has created an unusually precise list of injury codes for billing purposes. Currently there are 18,000 standard billing codes; the new law would expand that list to around 140,000
. If you've been injured at the Opera, walked into a lamppost, pulled something while playing a trumpet, or have been attacked by a turtle
, there's now a code for that. From the article: "The federal agencies that developed the system—generally known as ICD-10, for International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision—say the codes will provide a more exact and up-to-date accounting of diagnoses and hospital inpatient procedures, which could improve payment strategies and care guidelines. "It's for accuracy of data and quality of care," says Pat Brooks, senior technical adviser at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services."