Practices Should Prep Up For ICD-10 Transition

An article published in Medical Economics suggests practices to get ready for the transition to the Tenth Revision of International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10). [] increases the specificity of the report while conducting a diagnoses, thereby helping the physician to pin-point the issues faced by the patient. This has become a mandate and health providers have been instructed to document care properly or they may see a reduction in reimbursements. But there are also few concerns associated with the implementation of ICD-10 such as whether payers will be ready, and some experts are recommending practices secure a line of credit in advance.

One of the key steps in achieving ICD-10 readiness is appointment of a point-person to lead the transition. Next, it is important to contact software vendors to learn about the plans for upgrades, without assuming that vendors will make their systems ICD-10 compliant.

Shari Erickson, M.P.H., Vice President of Government and Regulatory Affairs for the American College of Physicians told Medical Economics, “The sooner you can start testing the better, because then you can identify any issues and start fixing them or develop contingency plans if it looks like those issues won’t be fixed in time.”

Coming to staff training, they will need to train with many available options, including vendors, sending an experienced coder to outside training, and other local and online resources.

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