INFOLINK: Association News
Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders
The Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders recently voted positively to update the term “skin substitutes” with “cellular and/or tissue-based products for wounds” (CTPs). The adoption of this term is the culmination of the alliance’s yearlong effort of its working group to determine a term that would be broad and inclusive to include both present and future technology. This project was undertaken by the alliance because it has direct and specific implications for clinicians and patients. Many of the representatives from the alliance clinical specialty organizations who work on Current Procedural Terminology (CPT)* coding issues recognized that the use of the term “skin substitute” was clinically inaccurate and impacted both coding and coverage criteria. If coverage policy is flawed, clinicians will not be paid for using these materials, and patients will not have access to them.
Thus, the alliance members decided that the time was right to update the term for “skin substitutes.” The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) in its draft technology assessment on skin substitutes stated that these products were not “skin substitutes,” and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services abandoned the term in the code descriptors for these products in 2010 when the AHRQ agreed that these products are not skin substitutes and instead issued Q codes for each individual product by its brand name.
*CPT is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association.