There have been a lot of questions regarding the announcement from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services about ICD-10. We at AppRev would like to take this time to address the issue and look at what we believe should continue to be the focus of your hospital’s attention.
We at AppRev would like to reassure all of our customers that we will continue to work toward the goal of ICD-10 implementation, despite the delay.
We believe that it is in the best interest of the hospitals to continue to focus on the education of physicians, coders, and other support staff. This will ensure quality documentation through the implementation process and beyond. Solid, quality documentation and coding can only assist hospitals in capturing the true acuity of their patients, and it is never too early to begin that process. The change in time frame should not derail any attempts by a hospital to develop and/or proceed with current quality improvement processes.
Time and additional resources will continue to be a priority to make sure that a hospital’s IT will be ready for a full implementation of ICD-10. We often think of this implementation as a purely coding and billing function, but often there are many departments in a hospital that currently utilize ICD-9 codes for statistics and reporting. These departments need to make sure that they too are ready for this change and not wait simply because of the delay.
And finally, one last area that hospitals should be aware of is the financial impact that ICD-10 will have to a hospital’s case mix and reimbursement. When MS-DRG’s began in 2007, we all heard that it would be revenue neutral to CMS although individual hospitals would see some shifting in their case mix and reimbursement. There were hospitals that won and those that lost in the MS-DRG transition. Knowing this, hospitals should make part of their action plan for ICD-10 implementation to know what their risk areas are and how to prepare or possibly prevent them.
AppRev is still committed to helping our clients make their transition to ICD-10 regardless of the change to CMS’ time frame. For more information about our approach to the transformation visit our website.