Current Procedural Terminology
The Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code set is maintained by the American Medical Association through the CPT Editorial Panel. The CPT code set accurately describes medical, surgical, and diagnostic services and is designed to communicate uniform information about medical services and procedures among physicians, coders, patients, accreditation organizations, and payers for administrative, financial, and analytical purposes. The current version is the CPT 2007.
There are three types of CPT codes:
- Category I CPT Code(s)
- Category II CPT Code(s) – Performance Measurement
- Category III CPT Code(s) – Emerging Technology
CPT is currently identified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)  as Level 1 of the Health Care Procedure Coding System.
CPT is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association. The AMA holds copyright which prevents free use and distribution of codes.
Although the CPT system is mandated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and HIPAA, and the data for it appears in the Federal Register, the American Medical Association (AMA) maintains that their copyright of the CPT allows them to charge a license fee to anyone who wishes to associate RVU values with CPT codes. The AMA receives approximately $70 million annually from these fees, making them reluctant to allow the free distribution of tools and data that might help physicians calculate, record, or submit their fees accurately and fairly.
- Official site by the American Medical Association
- Description of the three sections from the American Medical Association
- History from the American Medical Association
- Q&A from the American Academy of Family Physicians
- Purdue CPT code lists