The New ICD-10 Deadline

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media , July 13, 2012
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The Friday before the final one-year delay was announced, a committee at MCHS decided by consensus to postpone the beginning of ICD-10 training in light of the delay.

"If we train people too early, it's going to be a waste," Barnes says.

In the wake of the 5010 holdups, Barnes also questions whether the provider's payers will be ready when MCHS finally deploys ICD-10.

"Every time we've done any of these projects it always seems like the vendors can be ready, but the payers are always the ones behind, and normally it's the government," particularly Medicare and Medicaid, Barnes says.

A year's delay also means MCHS can continue to streamline its physicians' workflows, ranging from CPOE to progress notes, he adds.

A task force continues to scrutinize existing workflows and find ways to make them more efficient.

The $500,000 budgeted for training physicians and coding staff on ICD-10 will now come out of the 2013 budget, Barnes says. The amount originally budgeted for 2012 will now go toward streamlining workflow efforts, he adds.

"It's kind of surprising that we keep delaying the efforts in the United States to do that when ICD-10 codes have been used by other countries for years," Barnes says. "What I'm hoping will happen is that vendors will create applications to help physicians determine the correct ICD-10 codes at CPOE and progress notes times."

Physicians practicing at MCHS are either independently employed or employees of the Texas Tech Medical School. The hospital is providing them with electronic medical record software for their offices at a subsidized rate, Barnes says.

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