It's time to stop the foot dragging.
Now, the question is, how.
A simple, clean cutover from earlier coding systems to ICD-10 may not be possible.
"I don't think there's a perfect solution out there, but I think that payers being ready first may make the most sense," says Janice Jacobs, director of regulatory affairs at IMA Consulting, a national independent healthcare management consulting firm working with more than 700 hospitals and health systems throughout the U.S.
And yet, CMS was mute on this suggestion, which was promoted by the Medical Group Management Association among others. So the payers and the health plans get just as long as the providers to get their ICD-10 coding systems up and running. (Aetna, for one, has pledged to be fully ready to process ICD-10 claims by October 1, 2014.)