AHIMA Wins Advocacy Award for Grassroots ICD-10 Campaign

For the second year in a row, AHIMA has won the “Power of A” Silver Award, given by the American Society of Association Executives, for its ICD-10 advocacy work.

  • The award recognizes associations that “draw on the talents of volunteers or staff to solve an immediate problem in the local community or society at large” in order to educate and inform the public on an association’s members, products, value to society, or career opportunities.

In its award application, AHIMA touted the success of its two-pronged grassroots advocacy campaign to prevent legislators and federal agencies from voting to delay the implementation of ICD-10-CM/PCS beyond the go-live date of October 1, 2015. The first prong included AHIMA’s goal of having its members, volunteers, and staff meet with all 535 US Representatives and Senators prior to April 2015. They were encouraged to use these meetings to provide updated fact sheets on the benefits of the new codes, and information on the cost of delays, testing, and systems. These meetings could be conducted via conference call, at a district event, town hall, or by flying to Washington, DC. In addition to meetings, AHIMA members were also asked to write letters, make phone calls, and use social media to share the benefits of ICD-10 with their legislators.

The second prong focused on local physician outreach efforts, according to AHIMA’s application. Each state’s ICD-10 champion coordinated volunteers to reach out to their state’s medical association, local specialty societies, and small physician offices. Volunteers were also asked to provide physician groups training and free coding resources developed by AHIMA.

To date, AHIMA’s advocacy efforts have accomplished the following:

  • AHIMA members have met with over 400 members of congress since the beginning of the campaign
  • Over 20,000 letters have been sent to Congress by AHIMA members expressing their support for the new code sets
  • AHIMA’s #ICD10Matters Twitter campaign has resulted in over 78,000 #ICD10Matters Tweets, expressing support for the code sets and sent to legislators and stakeholders, along with links to editorials created by the coalition, infographics on ICD-10, and other pertinent information

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