In this blog post, Valant discusses the ICD-10 code for suicidal ideation, or when a patient is seriously considering or has a plan to end their life. The ICD-10 code for suicidal ideation is R45.851, which is a separate family of coding from depression and other mental health disorders. The reason for the differentiation is that not everyone with clinical depression has suicidal ideation. Each diagnosis must have a separate billing code that best describes the patient’s presenting symptoms.
Common Symptoms of Suicidal Ideation
Here are some of the most common behaviors and actions of patients experiencing suicidal ideation, as described by the Mayo Clinic:
- Preoccupation with death or violence
- Marked changes in normal routine
- Talking about the desire to die
- Desiring to be alone and withdrawing from social contact
- Mood swings
- Increasing drug or alcohol use
- Getting affairs in order or giving away personal belongings
- Engaging in self-destructive or risky behavior
- Significant personality changes
Specific ICD-10 Coding for Suicidal Ideation
The current ICD-10 code for suicidal ideation became effective on October 1, 2020. The first part of the code, R45, refers to abnormal clinical or laboratory findings, signs, or symptoms not classified elsewhere. The range of R00 to R46 relates specifically to signs and symptoms involving behavior, cognition, emotional state, or perception. Specifically, these include:
- 0 – nervousness
- 1 – agitation and restlessness
- 2 – unhappiness
- 3 – apathy and demoralization
- 4 – anger and irritability
- 5 – hostility
- 6 – violent behavior
- 7 – state of stress and emotional shock, unspecified
- 8 – other signs and symptoms involving the emotional state
R45.85 without the 1 identifier can relate to either homicidal or suicidal ideation. In terms of ICD-10 Diagnostic Related Groups, R45.851 goes under the classification 880. The 880 coding describes an acute adjustment reaction with psychosocial dysfunction.
Converting ICD-9 Codes to ICD-10 Codes Using Valant Software
Valant offers an electronic health record (EHR) solution to mental health providers that makes it simple for them to enter the right diagnostic code for reimbursement. Providers using an old ICD-9 code for any type of diagnosis can use our cheat sheet to find the new ICD-10 code.
Once you’ve determined the correct coding, entering the ICD-10 code into our EHR system is as simple as navigating to the patient’s chart and opening the diagnosis code tab. Providers then create a new diagnosis, enter the appropriate diagnostic code, and save. The software uses the General Equivalence Mapping Tool from Medicare and Medicaid to automatically convert any ICD-9 codes entered by providers.