Code Represents Important First Step In Process To Gain Coverage For Incisionless Procedures To Treat The Underlying Cause Of GERD
Final Code Scheduled to Take Effect January 2016
OMER, Israel, March 11, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Medigus Ltd. (TASE: MDGS), a medical device company developing minimally invasive endosurgical tools and a leader in direct visualization technology, announced today that the American Medical Association (AMA) has created a new Category 1 Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) code for Esophagogastric Fundoplasty Trans-Orifice Approach procedures which Medigus anticipates would be the code used for its MUSE(TM) platform.
The AMA published its decision on Monday March 9, 2015 following the submission of an application jointly sponsored by four key specialty medical societies: American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), American College of Gastroenterology (ACG), American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES).
The code, 432XX1, will enable physicians to specifically communicate information to payers about the procedure which is used to treat the underlying anatomical cause of chronic Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD).
"This Category 1 CPT code represents an important step in establishing coverage for this kind of procedure. We are pleased with the AMA's recommendation and would like to thank the AGA, ACG, ASGE and SAGES for their leadership, which indicates the medical community's recognition of the need for alternative and minimally invasive procedures for chronic GERD patients," said Chris Rowland, CEO of Medigus. "The Category I code should enhance access to these procedures which were created to help enhance both patient care and outcomes."
CPT codes are descriptive terms physicians use for reporting all medical, surgical, and diagnostic services and procedures; Category I codes are most frequently used by healthcare providers when reporting a significant portion of their services. In order to be granted a Category I code, an application must go through a rigorous sequential review and approval process by key members of the medical community who evaluate the procedure's value to physicians and patients. Following this approval, the recommendation will next be reviewed by the Relative Value Committee (RUC) in April, which will further assess the value for physician payment levels under Medicare. Approvals are scheduled to be finalized in November, and the new code is expected to take effect on January 1, 2016.
For additional information, please refer to the Summary of Panel Actions available on the AMA website.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter spontaneously opens or does not properly close after use, thereby allowing for stomach contents to rise into the esophagus, causing heartburn, irritation and potentially other discomforts. It affects approximately 24M Americans each year; 14.5M adults experience GERD symptoms at least twice a week, and 2.4M adults experience severe symptoms. While some patients can attain symptom relief through the use of proton pump inhibiters, or PPIs, (acid reducing medications), there is, however, growing concern around the prolonged chronic use of PPIs, including increased risk of bone fracture, infectious complications, and interference with anti-platelet medication and the adsorption of essential vitamins and minerals. A persistent state of untreatable GERD could potentially lead to Barrett's esophagus, a precancerous state which can lead to esophageal cancer. Patients who suffer from daily GERD are more likely to develop esophageal cancer.
About Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®)
CPT codes are a listing of descriptive terms and identifying codes for reporting medical services and procedures. The purpose of CPT is to provide a uniform language that accurately describes medical, surgical, and diagnostic services, and thereby serves as an effective means for reliable nationwide communication among physicians and other healthcare providers, patients, and third parties. CPT® is registered trademark of the American Medical Association.
The MUSE system is a leading technology in Natural Orifice Endoscopic Surgery procedures. The single operator system performs anterior partial fundoplication with standard surgical staples in a less invasive way, compared to other surgical procedures. Its intuitive endosurgical platform consists of a single use flexible surgical endostapler, equipped with a proprietary miniature camera, an ultrasonic sight and a range finder. The endostapler, which resembles an endoscope, is designed to be operated by a single user, includes a handle with controls, an 80cm flexible shaft, a 5cm rigid section holding a cartridge with 5 standard 4.8mm titanium surgical staples, a ratchet controlled one-way articulating section, and a distal tip. The MUSE system is FDA cleared and CE marked.
Medigus is a medical device company specializing in developing minimally invasive endosurgical tools and highly innovative imaging solutions. Medigus is a pioneer developer of a unique proprietary endoscopic device, the MUSE(TM) system, to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), one of the most common chronic diseases in the western world. As an expert in micro-endoscopic devices, Medigus has developed a range of micro CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) and CCD (charge-coupled device) video cameras, including micro ScoutCam(TM) 1.2, which to the best of the company's knowledge, is the smallest in the world. These innovative cameras are suitable for both medical and industrial applications. The MUSE system incorporates Medigus' revolutionary micro ScoutCam technology. Based on its proprietary technologies, Medigus designs and manufactures endoscopy and micro camera systems for partner companies, including major players in the medical and industrial fields. The company is committed to providing integrated solutions to meet all of its customer's imaging needs. Medigus is traded on the TASE (Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange). To learn more about the company's advanced technology, please visit www.medigus.com or www.microscoutcam.com.
Hayden/ MS-IR LLC