A bill has been introduced into the US House of Representatives that would stop the implementation of ICD-10-CM/PCS.
The bill, H.R. 2126, “Cutting Costly Codes Act of 2015,” would “prohibit the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) from replacing ICD-9 with ICD-10 in implementing the HIPAA code set.” Introduced by Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX-2) on April 30, H.R. 2126 has been referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce and the Committee on Ways and Means.
Rep. Poe is a long-time opponent of the ICD-10 implementation. In 2013 he introduced the same bill into the House of Representatives on April 24, 2013, H.R. 1701, that also called for prohibiting HHS from replacing ICD-9 with ICD-10. That bill failed to gain traction and was never taken up by the referred House committees, according to Congress.gov.
H.R. 2126 could face similar difficulty getting through the committee process and to the House floor for a vote. Rep. Poe is not on either referred committee, so would need to get a critical mass number of co-sponsors to support the bill, or find a champion on one of the two committees, for H.R. 2126 to even be considered by the Energy and Commerce and Ways and Means Committees.
The Committee on Energy and Commerce already held an ICD-10 related hearing in February, with several senior committee members stating their support for ICD-10. It could be unlikely the committee would hold another hearing on ICD-10. In addition, the Ways and Means Committee historically has been supportive of ICD-10 implementation, which may hinder support for H.R. 2126, according to Margarita Valdez, senior director of congressional relations at AHIMA.
If taken up by one of the committees, a hearing would take place to debate the bill and possibly add amendments or modifications. If the bill still has support, it would be sent to the House floor for a vote.
H.R. 2126 is co-sponsored by Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX), Rep. Mike D. Rogers (R-AL), Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), Rep. Morgan H. Griffith (R-VA), Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), and Rep. David P. Roe (R-TN).
AHIMA and the Coalition for ICD-10 have called on ICD-10 supporters to continue their advocacy efforts and contact their representatives and senators to prevent any future delay of ICD-10. To aid with this effort, AHIMA has pointed supporters to its Advocacy Assistant at http://capwiz.com/ahima/home/.