Gearing up for the ICD-10 Transition

Approximately a year and a half ago, Medical Billing Coding World reported the Coming of the ICD-10. Having been delayed for two years since its original scheduled launch date, as of now all indications are that it will roll out on its newly scheduled time of October 1st, 2015 – less than 100 days from now.

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In the original report from January of 2014, several tips were detailed on how to have a successful transition to the ICD-10:

  • Check with resources provided by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
  • Businesses should ensure that contracting organizations are prepared for the transition – the transition can only be as strong as the weakest link in the coding-billing-insurance-reimbursement chain
  • Computer software should be up to date
  • Medical billing and coding companies should make sure their employees are trained and prepared well in advance to ensure all questions have been adequately answered

These are undoubtedly still as true today as they were 18 months ago. In addition to these tips, some other important suggestions include:

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CMS’s Road to 10

The CMS Road to 10 is a special website developed exactly for healthcare service providers as well as medical billing and coding professionals. This website’s goal is to make the transition to the ICD-10 as easy as possible. It includes information about:

  • Local nearby training events regarding the ICD-10
  • Individual organization’s success stories about transitioning to the ICD-10, including tips on how to make this easier
  • Coding scenarios and situations for billing and coding professionals who work in physician practices, specifically Family Practice, Cardiology, OB/GYN, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, and Orthopedics

HIMSS ICD-10 Playbook

The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) recently published an ICD-10 Playbook on its website. This resource aims to help healthcare practitioners and their staff in making the transition to the ICD-10. Resources included on the webpage include:

  • A financial risk calculator that healthcare service providers can use to see their potential risk when making the ICD-10 transition
  • An ICD-10 cost prediction model that details an estimation of how much the transition will cost
  • Vendor report cards that grade vendors of medical service providers on their transition readiness
  • AHIMA transition, implementation, and preparation toolkit and checklist

World Health ICD-10 Interactive Self Learning Tool

The ICD-10 is, after all, an international classification of diseases and related health problems, compiled by the World Health Organization (WHO). That is why the WHO has created its Interactive Self Learning Tool to give healthcare providers and their staff training insights into this system of classification. While this learning tool can be beneficial, professionals should keep in mind that this WHO version is not exactly the same as the versions used in the United States. The US healthcare and insurance system uses:

  • ICD-10 Clinical Modification (CM)
  • ICD-10 Procedure Coding System (PCS)

Additional Sources of Transitional Assistance

While this list represents some of the main sources of ICD-10 transitional resources, it is by no means conclusive. Medical billing and coding professionals can find additional helpful suggestions with local professional organizations as well as other national agencies.

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