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Practice management knowledge hub

Is your practice running as efficiently as possible? Discover tips and insights that can help streamline your practice management.

The ICD-10 transition

The ICD-10 transition is going to be a significant challenge for the entire health care industry. The adoption of the ICD-10 code set for reporting diagnoses and procedures to payers increases the number of reporting codes from about 13,600 to more than 69,000. This represents a dramatic increase in the level of reporting detail and granularity.

To successfully manage the ICD-10 transition, medical practices will require a wide variety of adaptations: staff education and training; business-process analyses of health plan contracts, coverage determination and documentation; changes to superbills; and, IT system changes. And the conversion could result in increased documentation costs and, worse, cash flow disruption. Dealing with this level of complexity will be time-consuming – especially when this transition is happening the same time as Meaningful Use Stage 2.

The ICD-10 transition may be costly for many practices. The costs for typical small, medium and large practices have been estimated at $83,290, $285,195 and $2,728,780, respectively.1

But there are further complications that could make the ICD-10 transition painful in other ways:

  • Lack of payer readiness
  • Not having proper training to prepare practice staff
  • Reduction in productivity
  • Not being able to afford the costs
Are there ways to make the ICD-10 transition less painful and expensive? Yes, but it is difficult for practices to accomplish this on their own. Medical billing, practice management and EMR vendors can work with practices and payers to prepare practice systems for this massive changeover.

For all you need to know about the transition, see our ICD-10 transition Knowledge Hub.

1 “The Impact of Implementing ICD-10,” Nachimson Advisors, LLC, October 8, 2008, pp. 3-5.

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