Participate Now: AMA RUC Survey on Office and Outpatient Consultations, Inpatient and Observation Consultations and Services, Inpatient or Observation Discharge Services, and Prolonged E&M Services

June 7, 2021

American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) members who are practicing oncologists may have received emails inviting them to participate in the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Specialty Society Relative Value Scale (RVS) Update Committee (RUC) survey. This important survey will help ASCO, in collaboration with the RUC, recommend relative value units and direct practice expense values to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for the following services:  

  • Office and Outpatient Consultation Services (CPT codes 99242-99245)
  • Inpatient and Observation Consultation Services (CPT Codes 99252-99255)
  • Initial and Subsequent Inpatient or Observation Care Services (99221-99223 and 99231-99233)
  • Hospital Inpatient or Observation Discharge Services (CPT Codes 99238 and 99239)
  • Prolonged Services Without Direct Patient Contact (On a Date Other than a Face-to-Face Evaluation and Management Service) (CPT codes 99358 and 99359)
  • Prolonged Services With and Without Direct Patient Contact on the Date of an Evaluation and Management Service (CPT codes 99417 and 993X0)

Recipients may select which survey or surveys they would like to complete.

The Current Procedural Terminology (CPT(R)) guidelines and descriptors for these services are about to undergo significant revisions that will be implemented in 2023, including (but not limited to):

Code Level Selection: Similar to the 2021 update to the guidelines for office and outpatient Evaluation & Management (E&M) services, code level selection for consultations and inpatient or observation care services will be based on either medical decision making or total time.

Combination of Inpatient and Observation Evaluation and Management Services: Inpatient and Observation Evaluation and Management (Initial and Subsequent services) will be grouped into one code set entitled “Inpatient or Observation Care”.

Prolonged Services: Clarifications and updates will be made to the guidelines for Prolonged Services Without Direct Patient Contact (On a Date Other than a Face-to-Face Evaluation and Management Service) and Prolonged Service on the Same Day as a Face-to-Face Evaluation and Management Services. In addition, a new code has been created to describe a 15-minute Prolonged Service in the Inpatient or Observation setting.

Participants should be sure to read the updated CPT guidelines and code descriptors included in the survey email before taking the survey.

The surveys will also capture practice expense for certain codes. This includes clinical staff time spent on each service and typical medical supplies and equipment used in the provision of the visit. Participants should be prepared to work on this part with clinical staff and/or practice managers.

Links to the surveys, with the new guidelines, will be provided in six separate emails Please note the email may be in junk or spam inboxes. The survey will be open until Tuesday, June 22.

To ensure integrity of the data, we ask participants not to collaborate with any other physicians on responses to the physician work portion of the surveys. Please contact Allison Hirschorn at with any questions.

For more information on the RUC survey process, please watch Understanding the RUC Survey Instrument.

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