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Physicians Need to Get Ready for ICD-10 Despite Delay

Dan Michael Heroes


On April 1, 2014, President Barack Obama signed the “Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014.” This prevents the Secretary of Health and Human Services from adopting ICD-10 code sets before October 1, 2015.

Modernizing Medicine’s point of view is that this may delay the transition to ICD-10, but it’s certainly not going away and doctors should not put off preparations. It’s actually good news for physicians, giving them an additional year to prepare. We still anticipate ICD-10 happening, even if it’s tempting to breathe a sigh of relief.

One important reason why doctors need to get ready now and not ignore the delay is because ICD-10 isn’t a compliance issue like Meaningful Use where physicians receive a penalty if not in compliance. ICD-10 affects business and revenue because of the substantial increase in medical and diagnostic codes from 13,000 to over 140,000, when you include codes for physician extenders. The reality with ICD-10 is that without accurate billing codes, physicians won’t get paid.

We suggest that you use this additional time to more thoroughly research the ICD-10 readiness of your technology vendor. Ask questions, including whether or not the EMR system uses look-up tables or General Equivalence Mappings (GEMs). Quite a few EHR system providers have used these common approaches, but they tend to be tedious and may require extra steps and time, which can add minutes per patient. Do your due diligence, as it’s worth your time to determine if it’s the best strategy for your practice. Ask to see a demonstration of how long the system takes to generate the code and the superbill. If they don’t automatically generate with the exam note, chances are the solution will slow you down and could cost added minutes per patient. It would be time well spent now – while there is more time – to look at other options.

Modernizing Medicine is hosting ICD-10 webinars designed specifically for your specialty. During this complimentary, one-hour live presentation you will:

  • Realize why the new 140,000+ ICD-10 codes are trickier than you think
  • Learn the real difference between solutions being offered for ICD-10
  • Understand the detailed steps involved in mapping or conversion software tools for translating codes from ICD-9 to ICD-10; they can lack accuracy and can be a big time drain, potentially adding minutes to each exam
  • See a demonstration of built-in, intelligent ICD-10 coding in an EMR system that generates a bill effortlessly right along with your exam notes

We hope you will join us, but if you’re unable to attend then feel free to contact us for a private session.

Plastic Surgeons: Avoiding the Shocking Costs of ICD-10
Thursday, April 17, 2014
8:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. ET
Presenter: Medical Director of Plastic Surgery Tim Sayed, M.D.
Watch the recorded webinar

Orthopedic Surgeons: Avoiding the Shocking Costs of ICD-10
Friday, April 18, 2014
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET
Presenter: Dan Prince, M.D., M.P.H., EMA Orthopedics™
Watch the recorded webinar

Dermatologists: Avoiding the Shocking Costs of ICD-10
Friday, April 25, 2014
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET
Presenter: Chief Medical Officer Michael Sherling, M.D.
Watch the recorded webinar

Ophthalmologists, our ICD-10 webinar just for you has already occurred, but it’s not too late to learn more so please feel free to contact us.

Attending a specialty-specific webinar will help you consider how to prepare for ICD-10 despite the delay, and give you greater peace of mind throughout your decision-making.