ICD 10 Implementation may not be a Burden on Smaller Practices as Expected

Many of the smaller health care providers were reluctant to make ICD 10 preparation, since they thought that the transition would be a big financial burden. However, according to the latest reports, the estimates for ICD 10 implementation figures were exaggerated. The report, which was published in one of the health journals also found that there has been major progress in ICD 10 implementation process by vendors and physicians by using minimal resources than it was estimated earlier.

According to the latest report, the cost for ICD 10 preparation and transition would be lesser and would fall in the range of 1,900 dollars and 5,900 dollars, which is much lesser than what was estimated earlier. The author of the study says, “There are a number of reasons why the cost estimates reported in this article are lower.” He further adds, “The costs related to EHR adoption and other healthcare initiatives, like meaningful use are not directly related to the ICD-10 conversion although these costs were sometimes included in ICD-10 conversion cost estimates. The coding industry is much more knowledgeable and ready for ICD-10 now than previously reported. Furthermore, the activities necessary to be ready for ICD-10 have become available at very low cost.”

The latest report was prepared after conducting surveys on the costs incurred by physicians and vendors who have already made the transition. The costs for ICD 10 transition in the report include the charges for training purposes, end-to-end training, productivity, super bill conversion and software upgrades. The CEO of the journal, AHIMA, Lynne Thomas says, “This research confirms that the ICD-10 conversion for small practices is not only highly achievable but far less onerous than many have suggested.” She further adds, “AHIMA remains committed to helping small practices with their transition to ICD-10, a modern and robust coding system that will lead to improved patient care and better health outcomes at reduced costs.”

The author of the report says, “Since the new estimates of the costs for ICD-10 preparation are much lower than originally estimated, the barriers to ICD-10 implementation are much less than originally projected.” This means, we could soon see many smaller practices with ICD 10 preparation and implementation in the coming days.

Earlier reports by AMA said that ICD 10 preparation and implementation would put a big burden on small practices. In 2008, the estimated costs stood around 83,290 dollars and in a 2014 study, it was in the range of 56,639 dollars and 226, 105 dollars.