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Did You Know? Using Series 80 Treatment Codes
did you know v5

By Julie Bell, CTR, Quality Data Coordinator

Do you know all there is to know about series 80 treatment codes? Maybe you need a refresher, or you’re still learning your way to becoming a certified tumor registrar. These codes are one of many ways we can make sure that we are capturing complete and accurate cancer registry data. No matter what your experience with them is, simple methods exist to define series 80 codes, articulate their purpose and draw examples of when to use them.

The nomenclature of these codes is much like Class of Case. The first digit, combined with the second digit, tells a story. The first digit, which is always 8, means that treatment was recommended. The second digit, which will be 2, 5, 6, 7 or 8, expresses the reason why the treatment was not done or that the case needs follow up to determine when the treatment started. Chemotherapy, hormone therapy, immunotherapy, hematologic transplant and endocrine procedures utilize these codes. Surgery and radiation have single-digit codes (reason: no surgery; reason: no radiation) in another field. Finally, it’s important to remember series 80 codes are considered treatment for Class of Case purposes.

When it comes to examples, here are some scenarios involving how the codes are used and how they work with Class of Case to give you more complete data. The code description below is from the STORE Manual 2018, starting on page 355, and the examples are ones I’ve come up with on my own:

Code Description
82 Not administered/recommended because it was contraindicated due to patient risk factors.
85 Not administered because the patient died prior to the planned or recommended therapy.
86 Not administered. It was recommended by the patient's physician but was not administered as part of the first-course therapy. No reason was stated in the patient's record. 
87 Not administered. It was recommended by the patient's physician, but this treatment was refused by the patient, the patient's family member or the patient's guardian. 
88 Treatment was recommended, but it is unknown if it was administered.

Now, here are some examples of code use:

Find patients that need start date of treatments:

Enter “88” in the treatment field that you need to follow up on. Use a date flag of “15” (if software permits), enter “88” where the treatment would be coded. Once a quarter or so, run a list of patients with “88“ in the treatment fields.

Document why treatment wasn’t done:

If treatment was recommended but not done, choose the appropriate code listed in the STORE Manual and enter it in the treatment field. If a patient refused an orchiectomy, then enter “87” in the hematologic and endocrine procedure field. When the case is reviewed as part of a study, or by a physician for quality, it is documented by code that the patient refused. Be sure to document by text and include the reason why.

Document referral patterns sooner rather than later:

If chemotherapy is given at an outside facility or a non-staff physician office, your administrators want to know that to try to reclaim the leakage. By using the series 80 codes and entering the outside entity as the location, you have given them referral patterns sooner rather than later (e.g., when the treatment is done).

Class of Case example:

Here’s a scenario: A female patient diagnosed at your facility with breast cancer. She then goes to an outside hematologist-oncologist and that physician recommends chemotherapy after surgery. She has surgery at your facility. You know that the physician recommended chemotherapy after surgery, so you would use “88” in the chemotherapy field. The location of planned treatment is the outside physician office, so this is a class 13 – the patient was diagnosed and had surgery at your facility, but the recommendation for chemotherapy was made outside.

I hope that you found this article on series 80 codes worthwhile. If you have not been using the codes for all of the fields mentioned above, I hope you begin doing so now! Using these codes is one other way we can ensure that we are capturing more complete and accurate data – remember, better data saves lives!

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