ICD-10 Delay Leaves Health Care Professionals Frustrated

Many health care professionals breathed a sigh of relief in late March when the U.S. Congress delayed implementation of the new ICD-10 coding set along with a Medicare Bill. However, other doctors and health care administrators were frustrated by the delay. Some find it disheartening after being assured repeatedly that this change-over would take place as originally scheduled. Such frustrations are understandable. The administrator of the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), Marilyn Tavenner had warned the medical community...

Data, Financial & Productivity Losses to Accompany ICD-10 Conversion

Thanks to the HHS mandate, in six months the healthcare system will be facing the transition to ICD-10. This transition may spell trouble for some healthcare infrastructure providers and large facilities as experts are anticipating data and financial losses. In fact, researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago have indicated the transition may not only cost healthcare facilities significantly more money than previously thought, but have other unwelcomed side effects as well. Although no cute or funny code exist...

90% of Physician Practices Not Ready for ICD-10

With the October 2014 deadline for physicians to transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 approaching, less than 10% of private practices are ready. In a survey of medical professionals, Porter Research found that even though 87% of respondents said they are confident they will be ready when the time comes, 74% had not started the implementation process in the final quarter of 2013. Kind of makes you shake in your boots, no? A significant majority of respondents expressed concerns about loss of revenue...

The Sin of Not Paying Attention To ICD-10

Not complying with the new ICD-10 updates may not land you in a version of Hades, but when your claims start bouncing back, that’s how it will feel. Don’t ruin the cash flow of your business by ignoring an essential part of good healthcare administration. Get your ICD-10 coding book now and get to work updating your practice before the newly revised October 1, 2015 start date. Here are a few key items to consider: Buying the Book The ICD-10...

Medical Billing Lessons Learned from Our Neighbors to the North

Canada changed over from ICD-9 codes to ICD-10 codes starting in 2001. The bad news is the implementation did not go smoothly. The good news is we can learn from the mistakes their providers made. ICD10Watch recently outlined eight lessons practice managers may want to incorporate into their changeover plans. Forget about crosswalks. Gillian Price, now with QuadraMed, was an ICD-10 consultant during the transition. She warns that the new codes are too different for crosswalks and mapping to work...

ICD-10 Testing: Time to Get Real for Medical Billers

As we get close to the end of the year, there are conflicting calls from various groups regarding ICD-10. Last week, the American Medical Association called for a delay, citing costs between $83,000 and $2.7 million per practice to implement. This week, the American Hospital Association warned that a delay in implementation would increase costs. According to FierceHealthIT, a July letter sent to House and Senate Members from AHA Executive Vice President Rick Pollack and BCBS Association Senior Vice President...

Why ICD-10 Will Rock Your World [Bye Bye ICD-9]

The changeover from ICD-9 to ICD-10 is mandatory, so one could argue it doesn’t matter if ICD-10 is an improvement. But it is better, and perhaps understanding the reasons will ease the pain for practices as they budget and plan for the changeover. ICD-10 is more logical than ICD-9. According to CMS, the structure in ICD-10 makes it easier to use than ICD-9. Once coders adjust to the new system, finding the right code will be simplified because of the...

ICD-10: Time to Start Dual Coding

With the ICD-10 changeover just about a year away, some practices are preparing to start dual coding their encounters. In other words, they’ll code each encounter in ICD-9 and ICD-10. (This contrasts with the similarly named double coding, in which forms are coded in ICD-9 at the time of the encounter and later translated into ICD-10). Obviously, there are labor and IT costs involved with dual coding. Your software must be set up to support ICD-10 codes, and coding times...

It’s Time to Get Serious About ICD-10

The transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 is a major one, and many practices continue to put off preparation. Some believe CMS will extend the October 2014 deadline, while others are occupied with other issues. At this point, it seems certain the deadline will not be extended, and there may be serious issues stemming from a lack of preparation: Because of the extension already given, CMS says there will be no grace period—claims using ICD-9 codes after 10/1/14 will be denied....