Steve Sisko, an Arizona-based healthcare industry consultant, says that MGMA is exaggerating the effect of potential snafus in the ICD-10 rollout.
"I do believe the MGMA is trying a little hyperbole to leverage the current 'government can't get it right' fervor for their anti-ICD-10 agenda," Sisko said in an email exchange with HealthLeaders Media. "I think that providers have to be careful with making a big deal out of ICD-10 and playing it as something the payers will drop the ball on. My sense is that it's the providers who are lagging with their ICD-10 migration and conversion efforts. The providers tried this same approach when 5010 was hiccupping last year and was granted an enforcement delay."
"Personally I don't think the two efforts are comparable and while I suppose anything is possible, I don't think any issues associated with the ICD-10 rollout will be major or as concentrated in certain functional areas like the HIX rollouts. I do suspect there will be some problems – relatively minor – that will be blown out of proportion."
'Nobody Seems to Be Ready'
But Robert Tennant, a senior policy advisor at MGMA, says the comparison is apt. "What the exchanges showed us was that if you don't test and you just go live with something, you run the risk of problems. And ICD-10 is a massive list for the industry and for Medicare," Tennant says.