Mayo Clinic eased the transition by initiating training and technology changes little by little. The first step was to add a few of the expanded ICD-10 codes into their existing coding system, working in more new codes over time. The second step is to show how the current documentation under ICD-9 differs from what will be required under ICD-10.
"As part of our ongoing training, we encourage physicians to get used to mentioning all the complicating factors that will be needed under ICD-10," explains Thompson.
"We target this documentation to help the physicians realize that this [older method] may work now, but under ICD-10 you need more specifics on what the procedure was and what complications occurred with the disease process. We provide the physician with feedback so he or she can understand what they need to start adding now for ICD-10 before October 1, 2013, when it starts affecting revenue," Thompson says.
Thompson stresses that getting physicians engaged now is essential to a smooth roll-out. "Getting them involved early on and helping them understand the magnitude of this and the effect it will have on them personally on the front lines makes a difference. It gives them a chance to help guide the training and strategies that will help them in their everyday work," he says.