Despite a Congress-mandated fourth delay of the implementation deadline, ICD-10 preparations continue, though the effect on organizations varies.
This article first appeared in the October 2014 issue of HealthLeaders magazine.
Although Congressional action has postponed the ICD-10 coding mandate until at least October 1, 2015, preparations to adopt it continue at a slower pace, even though physician opposition to the mandate remains steadfast.
"We were prepared to be ready October 1 of 2014," says Randy McCleese, vice president of information systems and CIO at St. Claire Regional Medical Center in Morehead, Kentucky, which has 110 staffed beds and 2013 revenue of about $126 million.
Like many health systems, St. Claire had purchased the needed EHR software upgrades to run ICD-10: Meditech in its hospital, and Allscripts Professional in family medicine. In early 2013, the software was in place.
"The plan was we were going to start dual-coding in ICD-9 and ICD-10 in the spring of 2014," McCleese says. "We got our coders certified. They were ready to go. We hadn't started teaching physicians as far as what needed to go there for the ICD-10s, but we'd started meeting with them, letting them know that these changes are coming."
Scott Mace is the former senior technology editor for HealthLeaders Media. He is now the senior editor, custom content at H3.Group.