Q&A: How do you code first course palliative therapy?


Marketing Manager

Q: A patient presented with metastatic disease at diagnosis. Palliative radiation therapy was instituted shortly after diagnosis. Is the treatment radiation or palliative care?

A: Double code the treatment as both radiation therapy and palliative care per FORDS radiation therapy provided to prolong the patient’s life by controlling symptoms, alleviate pain or to make the patient comfortable should be coded as palliative care and as first course therapy if that procedure removes or modifies either primary or metastatic malignant tissue.