Get Ready for Transition to ICD 10 Medical Coding

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    Get Ready for Transition to ICD 10 Medical Coding

    ICD stands for International Classification of Diseases which is used to record and

    report medical diagnoses and inpatient procedures in the US health clinics. ICD which

    was and is still used in night revision since 1978 will now be replaced on October 01,

    2015 by ICD 10 medical coding. The adoption of this transition has taken the form

    under US Department of Health and Human Service (HHS).

    About ICD-10 Medical Coding

    The main reason behind ICD-10 transition is because ICD-9 produces limited data about

    medical condition. In addition to this, the 10th version helps in fixing the problem

    through advanced medical coding of diseases and generates more helpful data to

    identify epidemics.

    ICD-10 transition was done by the World Health Organization (WHO) way back in 1994

    but it lacked procedure codes and was already in use by healthcare organizations in

    many countries. So, CMS developed IDC-10 coding for reporting procedures, including

    surgeries performed in US hospitals.

    ICD-10 is being created and copyrighted by WHO. National Center for Health Statistic

    (NCHS), a Federal Agency is responsible for using it. ICD-10 has expanded details for

    radiology, radiation oncology, ambulatory and managed care, etc. along with combined

    diagnosis and system codes for other specialties. This modification consists of two


    1. ICD-10-CM for diagnosis coding

    2. ICD-10-PCS for inpatient procedure coding

    ICD-10 CM is the updated version of ICD-9 CM Volume 1 and 2. The ICD-10 PCS is the

    updated version of ICD-9 CM Volume 3. The change in the transition would not affect

    CPT coding.

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    Differences between ICD-9 and ICD-10

    ICD-9 ICD-10

    3-5 long length characters 3-7 long characters

    13,000 codes approx. 68,000 codes approx.

    Limited space to add new code Flexible enough to add code

    Lack in detailing the data Provide specific data

    The Impact of ICD-10 on Physicians:

    The impact of ICD-10 transition on physicians is quite substantial. It will call for suitable

    infrastructure and supporting documentation. In addition to this, the change in

    reimbursement patterns may result in increased specification. With the

    implementation of ICD-10 Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

    the reimbursement regulations and payment structure will require the physicians to

    build up their staff education, training, change in health plans and determination of

    policy coverage.

    Training Staff and Implementing Health IT:

    Training the clinical staff about the new coding standard may require additional hours

    and coding staff. The cost for this may vary depending on the training materials

    offered. The transition will also require physicians to modify their software in terms of

    insurance coverage and billing sections. The time required for this shift can be

    significant. According to the experts, physicians may require two to four hours of daily

    training for assigning the accurate diagnosis codes.

    Preparation for implementing the ICD-10 has surely impacted many areas of the US

    clinical practice. Professionals at take care of billing cycle

    for various purpose medical specialties and help practices deal with the transition by

    collecting maximum collectibles for the rendered service.


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