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ICD-10 Is Gonna Cost Me How Much?

Gienna Shaw, for HealthLeaders Media, July 26, 2011

Last February I asked every CIO I could corner at the annual Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society meeting what his or her organization was doing to prepare for ICD-10.

I got a lot of blank stares.

Sure, the deadline for the massive coding switch-over isn't until in October 2013. But I got the sense that even if folks weren't quite ready to brag about their progress preparing for ICD-10, they were at least starting to think about it with greater urgency.

A new Intelligence Report from HealthLeaders Media, ICD-10 Puts Revenue at Risk, backs that thesis: 84% have started their ICD-10 projects. Meanwhile, less than a third (29%) have moved beyond the assessment phase into implementation.

Of the organizations that have begun their assessments, 73% have completed a system/vendor readiness analysis; 64% have assessed training needs; 57% have done a documentation gap analysis; and 48% have completed a financial impact assessment.

That's worrisome, says Albert Oriol, vice president and chief information officer at Rady Children's Hospital and Health Center in San Diego and lead advisor for the report. "Anyone who isn't at least partway through [discovery/assessment] is behind," he told HealthLeaders Media's Senior Finance Editor Karen Minich-Pourshadi.  She examines the financial jitters ICD-10 is causing.

Oriol notes that without the assessment, organizations may be caught off guard by a bigger-than-expected price tag. "The cost is higher than they may think. We did our financial assessment and now we're discovering that it's double what we estimated," he says.

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