Despite Delay, Path to ICD-10 Continues

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By Terry Miller, RN, COS-C 
Regulatory Advisor, McKesson
Despite Delay, Path to ICD-10 Continues

Confused about ICD-10 implementation and what you should be doing? You’re not alone.

The one-year implementation delay to October 1, 2015, has left many healthcare organizations in a quandary over what they should be doing and when.

A scheduled session on ICD-10 implementation at this year’s McKesson Homecare & Hospice National Users’ Conference took on a new focus when the delay was announced just before the conference. Many of those who attended shared their stories of ICD-10 preparedness at their agencies. Here are some of the comments we heard:

  • One agency created a new position, a clinical care coordinator to help with coding and documentation. With salary plus training, it turned out to be quite a chunk of money.
  • Another agency spent money on training, on books, and hired a per diem coder who is certified in ICD-9 and ICD-10.
  • An agency executive said staff remain focused on the clinical side, with all monthly in-service presentations being on assessment. Doing this for the entire year should prepare the agency with the right documentation for coding. The agency spent money on books and education for managers, planning to start dual coding this summer. Those plans, however, remain up in the air.
  • Coders at one agency are doing dual coding 25% of the time, a practice that may continue despite the implementation delay.
  • One agency has been outsourcing coding for 18 months because staff coders didn’t want to learn ICD-10. It also outsources OASIS reviews. The agency’s average days in A/R is 14, where it used to be 21 days. The coding company uses McKesson, so the agency gives the coding company access to agency systems.

A recent test by CMS indicates that many providers are ready for ICD-10. A March test of 127,000 Medicare fee-for-service claims from 2,600 providers (including home health agencies) showed an 89% acceptance rate, CMS reported in June. Some regions had acceptance rates of 99%. Usual claims acceptance rates average 95%-98%.

McKesson Homecare™ and McKesson Hospice™ already feature the ability to dual code, so you can use this delay for your agency to stay on top of this important change.

Do you want to learn more about ICD-10’s far-reaching effect on the healthcare industry? [Read this white paper and discover McKesson’s perspective on ICD-10’s impact on healthcare in the short term and long term.

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