AMA CPT® and RUC
The AMA/Specialty Society RVS Update Committee (RUC)
The AMA/Specialty Society Relative Value Scale Update Committee (RUC) is a unique, multi-specialty committee dedicated to describing the resources required to provide physician services. These recommendations are based on data collected from surveys of practicing physicians regarding the physician work involved in performing CPT codes. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) considers this input when developing Relative Value Units (RVUs).
For a better understanding of the American Medical Association (AMA) RUC process, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine suggests you watch the video, Understanding the RUC Survey Instrument: Physician Services, and download the PowerPoint presentation, Understanding the RUC Survey Instrument. Prepared by the AMA, these resources describe the survey process and provide general information on the standard RUC survey instrument.
For more information on the RUC process, please contact the AASM Health Policy Department at firstname.lastname@example.org or 630-737-9700.
The AMA Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) Process
The CPT Editorial Panel is responsible for maintaining the AMA CPT code set. The panel is authorized by the AMA Board of Trustees to revise, update, or modify CPT codes, descriptors, rules and guidelines. In order to do this, the panel maintains an open process and convenes meetings three times per year to solicit the direct input of practicing physicians, medical device manufacturers, developers of the latest diagnostic tests and advisors from over 100 societies representing physicians and other qualified health care professionals. Medical specialty societies, individual physicians, hospitals, third-party payers and other interested parties may submit applications for changes to CPT for consideration by the editorial panel.
The panel is composed of 17 members. Of these, 11 are physicians nominated by the national medical specialty societies and approved by the AMA Board of Trustees. One of the 11 is reserved for expertise in performance measurement. One physician is nominated from each of the following: the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Hospital Association and CMS. The remaining two seats on the CPT Editorial Panel are reserved for members of the CPT Health Care Professionals Advisory Committee.
Supporting the CPT Editorial Panel in its work is a larger body of CPT advisors, the CPT Advisory Committee. The members of this committee are primarily physicians nominated by the national medical specialty societies represented in the AMA House of Delegates. Currently, the advisory committee is limited to national medical specialty societies seated in the AMA House of Delegates and to the AMA Health Care Professionals Advisory Committee (HCPAC), organizations representing limited-license practitioners and other allied health professionals. Additionally, a group of individuals, the Performance Measures Advisory Group (PMAG), who represent various organizations concerned with performance measures, also provides expertise.
Our advisory seats to the AMA CPT Editorial Panel and the RUC enable us to represent the interests and needs of sleep specialists in updating and maintaining billing codes for the sleep field. This advisory role also enables us to be involved in providing to CMS recommended relative value units for these physician services.
However, our representation and ability to give input at these meetings is dependent on AASM representation in the AMA House of Delegates, which requires a sufficient number of AASM members to join the AMA. Please join the AMA or renew today to help us keep this position of influence and ensure that the voice of sleep specialists is heard on issues of importance to our field. Learn more by reading, “The Case for Membership in the AMA,” a letter to the editor published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. We thank you for supporting the field of sleep medicine!