3D Printing in Hospitals: The Road to Reimbursement

On an individual level, say the tech, engineer, or physician running the day-to-day operations of the 3D printing program, more challenges appear. When in the process of patient imaging to 3D printing are these codes implemented? It’s becoming the popular opinion that one (or more) of these codes is charged under radiology, which makes sense, but only if, at the time of ordering the imaging (CT, MRI, or 3D ultrasound) or interpreting the images, the physician knows an anatomic model will be 3D printed. At the same time, imaging standards for 3D printing typically fit for virtual 3D reconstructions, for which there are already Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reimbursement through codes 76376 and 76377. It’s important to note that 3D recon (or post-processing) codes cannot be used in conjunction with the new 3D printing codes. This clash may stem from that a virtual 3D reconstruction is one of the steps in producing an anatomic 3D printed model.

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