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Outpatient Code Editor (OCE)

The October 2009 IOCE version 10.3 contains several structural changes:

  1. The software will be modified to retain 28 quarters (7 years) of programs and codes in each release. The earliest version date included in the October, 2009 release will be 1/1/03. The earliest start date will roll each quarter so that each release will conform to include only 28 quarters. If you need to access releases prior to 7 years, you will need to maintain a copy of the July 2009 IOCE in your system.
  2. The tool set used to generate the Basic Assembler Language (BAL) for the Mainframe IOCE program will be updated. Though minor, the tool set change will slightly change the structure and source code of the mainframe IOCE, resulting in small changes in the procedure for installing the MF IOCE; complete instructions will be included in the MF Installation Manual.

More information on both of these changes is described in CRs 6401 and 6390.


The 'Integrated' Outpatient Code Editor (I/OCE) 

The 'integrated' Outpatient Code Editor (I/OCE) program processes claims for all outpatient institutional providers including hospitals that are subject to the Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) as well as hospitals that are NOT (Non-OPPS). Claim will be identified as 'OPPS' or 'Non-OPPS' by passing a flag to the OCE in the claim record, 1=OPPS, 2=Non-OPPS; a blank, zero, or any other value is defaulted to 1.

This version of the OCE processes claims consisting of multiple days of service. The OCE will perform three major functions:

  1. Edit the data to identify errors and return a series of edit flags.
  2. Assign an Ambulatory Payment Classification (APC) number for each service covered under OPPS, and return information to be used as input to a PRICER program.
  3. Assign an Ambulatory Surgical Center (ASC) payment group for services on claims from certain Non-OPPS hospitals.

Each claim will be represented by a collection of data, which will consist of all necessary demographic (header) data, plus all services provided (line items).  It is the user's responsibility to organize all applicable services into a single claim record, and pass them as a unit to the OCE. The OCE only functions on a single claim and does not have any cross claim capabilities. The OCE will accept up to 450 line items per claim. The OCE software is responsible for ordering line items by date of service.

The OCE not only identifies individual errors but also indicates what actions should be taken and the reasons why these actions are necessary. In order to accommodate this functionality, the OCE is structured to return lists of edit numbers. This structure facilitates the linkage between the actions being taken, the reasons for the actions and the information on the claim (e.g., a specific diagnosis) that caused the action.

In general, the OCE performs all functions that require specific reference to HCPCS codes, HCPCS modifiers and ICD-9-CM diagnosis codes. Since these coding systems are complex and annually updated, the centralization of the direct reference to these codes and modifiers in a single program will reduce effort and reduce the chance of inconsistent processing.

This integration does not change current logic that is applied to outpatient bill types that already pass through the OPPS OCE software.

Editing that only applied to OPPS hospitals (e.g., blood, drug, partial hospitalization logic) in the past will not be applied to non-OPPS hospitals at this time. However, with the integrated OCE, line items on claims from non-OPPS hospitals will be assigned specific edit numbers and dispositions, where in the past; this type of detail was not provided.