White Paper Summarizes ICD-10-CM/PCS Summit Takeaways

An AHIMA white paper summarizing key takeaways from the association’s 2014 ICD-10-CM/PCS and CAC Summit encourages members to “stay the course” on implementation efforts and offers strategies for using the delay effectively.

The white paper, “Achieving ICD-10-CM/PCS Compliance in 2015: Staying the Course for Better Healthcare—A Report from the AHIMA 2014 ICD-10/CAC Coding Summit,” encompasses advice dispensed by top health IT stakeholders and experts at the Summit, which was held in Washington, DC, in April 2014. The white paper was published online in AHIMA’s online research journal Perspectives in Health Information Management.

The delay of ICD-10 implementation by an extra year was the topic at the forefront of conversation for Summit attendees and presenters. The Summit was held less than a month after bipartisan legislation scuttled the code set’s compliance date by one year. But the white paper emphasizes practical and important steps stakeholders should take in the year leading up to the compliance date. These steps include:

  • Educating vendors and physicians on the opportunities for leveraging ICD-10 data
  • Examining the risks and challenges of potentially losing momentum for training programs and claims/system testing
  • Determining the state of ICD-10 readiness with the stakeholders, such as private insurers, Medicare, Medicaid, and clearinghouses
  • Continuing education efforts and refresher training as needed
  • Using the added time to improve clinical documentation or look to solutions such as computer-assisted coding and natural language processing
  • Continuing to evaluate coders on their accuracy and productivity—this can also help improve ICD-9 coding
  • Staying involved with state and national organizations that advocate for a firm implementation date—engage your legislators

The paper concludes that avoiding further delay in ICD-10 implementation is critical in order to limit implementation costs and to be able to begin to leverage the opportunities anticipated by the availability of better healthcare data.

“Active engagement and commitment by all stakeholders are essential to preventing another delay and transitioning to ICD-10 smoothly,” the paper states. “Dispelling persistent ICD-10 myths is a key element for achieving full stakeholder commitment to the ICD-10 transition. Therefore, CMS and other ICD-10 stakeholders have a shared responsibility to continually communicate the facts regarding the reasons behind replacing ICD-9-CM with ICD-10 and the actual impact of the transition on various stakeholder groups.”

Click here to read the entire white paper and here to read the Journal’s coverage of this year’s Summit.


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