You’ve heard the news about the transition to the ICD 10 or International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, which has been postponed to October of 2014, so now you have to do make some preparation and changes to be able to cope up with the updates. The transition from ICD 9 to 10 will involve an update to thousands of new codes which will affect workers in the healthcare industries especially those involved in medical billing and coding.
Even though there are still groups out there who thinks that the new set of codes is still not ready, it seems that more hospitals and healthcare facilities are no longer counting on the delay but instead are preparing for its launching. In February 2011, more than 40 percent of the members of The American Hospital Association have finished their ICD 10 implementation plan.
So what do small and big healthcare facilities do for the preparation of the implementation? The first thing they do of course is to get the staff the right training. Basically you would your current staffs that are already trained and knowledgeable with ICD 9 to learn and study ICD 10 and be able to implement it with the overall coding system within the facility and the healthcare institutions they communicate with. Replacing ICD 9 to 10 should be done before the deadline of October 1, 2014. Training is done through seminars, in training centers and even online.
The industry is indeed preparing for the changes but studies and survey from HRAA shows that most of the facilities are TOO focused on training people internally but lack preparations and testing with payers. “HRAA encourages providers not to make assumptions but to implement technology and analytics to do the financial modeling and denial strategies now, so that they won’t be playing a guessing game with their payers once the transition takes place.” – HRAA
With 10 months to go, preparation, testing and implementation can still be improved. Although a lot in the industry is expecting that not all is going to be ready for the updates by October, this shouldn’t be the reason not to practice and perfect the implementation earlier.