The Definitive Blog

HHS Confirms October 2015 Deadline for ICD-10

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has confirmed October 1, 2015 as the deadline for the implementation of ICD-10, Medical Economics reports.

The switch from ICD-9 to ICD-10 code is set to accommodate codes for new diseases and procedures, involving the change out of 14,000 codes for about 69,000 codes.  These changes are to be made by healthcare providers and insurers.

Although their deadline was extended, many hospitals still have a lot to prepare for this transition. EHR Intelligence, however, reports that hospitals won’t make the transition alone.  Hospitals will instead utilize consultants and service partners for the adjustment to the new code set.  It is projected that 71% of hospitals plan to have a clinical documentation improvement (CDI) partner by third quarter, 2015.

According to the Definitive Healthcare hospital database, the leading source of healthcare industry data, there is over 7,200 hospitals nationwide and over 875 health systems.  With 71% of this market projected to have a CDI partner by third quarter, 2015, this presents a significant opportunity for both consultants and vendors in this specialty.

According to Marilyn Tavenner, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) administrator, “ICD-10 codes will provide better support for patient care, and improve disease management, quality measurements and analytics.”

This October 1, 2015 deadline was delayed exactly one year due to the language found in the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, which stated that HHS could not require healthcare providers to switch to ICD-10 until at least October 1, 2015.

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