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Failing to Prep for ICD-10 Will Cost You

Rene Letourneau, for HealthLeaders Media, October 7, 2013

"We didn't lose momentum due to the delay. Instead we used this additional time to fine-tune our education plans," Burke says. "[The delay] enabled a more in-depth evaluation of vendors for both education and computer-assisted coding [and allowed us to] increase our workforce of coders and clinical documentation specialists."

More staff is needed because NYU Langone, like most provider organizations, believes the transition to ICD-10 will significantly reduce efficiency, at least temporarily.

"Last year, we strategically added additional coders to offset any potential productivity loss…and we don't expect to lose any coders due to attrition," Burke says. "We also decided to increase the size of our clinical documentation excellence team to assist with improving clinician documentation."

NYU Langone is using online and classroom training to get its coders up to speed and is implementing computer-assisted coding (CAC) software to aid in the tough task of coding effectively in ICD-10, which will increase the number of diagnosis codes from 14,000 to 69,000 and the number of procedure codes from 4,000 to 72,000.

"We are implementing CAC to further deflect any potential coding productivity decreases," Burke says.

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