While the federal compliance date for ICD-10 has been extended to October 1, 2014, the complexity and time commitment necessary for its successful implementation still remain daunting. The ICD-10 transition would introduce 68,000 new diagnosis codes and approximately 72,000 new procedure codes.
Adopting and integrating these new codes within their practice’s workflow will be quite challenging for most ambulatory practices. ICD-10 adoption will not only require testing changes and remapping application interfaces of the practice management and EMR software, but also changes to billing reporting packages and decision and analytical tools.
It is the duty of EMR vendors to properly educate and inform their clients about ICD-10’s impact on their workflow and revenue stream, and yet, according to MGMA’s president Susan Turney, most EMR vendors are doing a poor job of answering provider concerns. She recently stated,”A successful transition to ICD-10 requires coordination between providers and their vendor, clearinghouses and health plan trading partners. Our data suggest that many practices are in the dark in terms of moving forward with ICD-10 as this coordination has not yet occurred. Without the necessary software changes and testing, practices will have no confidence that they will be paid for the care they deliver to their patients after Oct. 1, 2014.”
In her statement, she was referring to the survey conducted by MGMA which reports that almost 50 percent of physician groups have not been informed by their EHR vendors regarding their vendor’s preparedness to meet the ICD-10 deadline.
MTBC is committed to meet all applicable time frames for compliance and we will work closely with our clients to ensure they are fully transitioned to ICD-10 coding standards by October 2014.
We have created an implementation roadmap as part of our ICD-10 adoption strategy.
The main phases of this include:
1. Impact Assessment – (Q2 2013)
2. Internal Communication – (Q2 2013)
3. Implementation of ICD-10 development changes – (Q3 2013)
4. Client Education – (Q3 2013)
5. Internal Testing – (Q4 2013)
6. External testing with payers and clearing houses – (Q1 2014)
7. Go Live – (Q2 2014)
By October 2013, we will complete all ICD-10 modifications to our practice management and EHR product suite.
These modifications will primarily include:
1. Development of the ICD-10 Translator in the PM as well as all of the EHR systems
2. Creation of Dynamic Super bills
3. Increase of the ICD-10 field size to 7 characters
4. Creation of new CMS 1500 forms
All of these modifications would ensure that our clients can successfully transition to ICD-10 by October 2014.
To ease this coding transition, we will provide our clients with a mapping solution to ensure that they can easily reference the new ICD-10 codes and their usage pattern in our EMR.
We will also help clients assess the impact of the coding transition on work flow and revenue stream, so they can better capitalize on the opportunities the transition will present in terms of increased revenue and correct patient data availability.
There will be no additional costs to MTBC clients with respect to the ICD-10 transition coaching services and neither would there be an impact on the contractual agreement between MTBC and its clients.
The ICD-10 transition can be incredibly transformative and help to power a new era in patient care. Every medical practice should decide for itself how best to adapt to it.