The American Medical Association, which has opposed transitioning to the ICD-10 code sets, at least now has another delay in the compliance date after passage by the Senate and the House of the Medicare “Doc-Fix” bill that includes moving back ICD-10 to at least October 2015. But the organization isn’t tooting its horn and will continue the fight.

AMA President Ardis Dee Hoven, M.D., in an April 1 statement, said getting a temporary delay in the code sets isn’t worth waiting longer for a replacement of Medicare’s Sustainable Growth Rate formula for paying physicians:

“The American Medical Association did not support H.R. 4302 since the bill unwisely extended a fiscally irresponsible pattern of congressional procrastination that has perpetuated Medicare’s fatally flawed sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula. The AMA and other physician organizations strongly agree that while a delay in ICD-10 implementation provides welcomed temporary relief, it does not offset the continued harm caused by keeping the SGR formula on life support and further delaying badly needed Medicare physician payment reforms. The AMA remains committed to relieving physicians of the crushing administrative burdens and practice disruptions that are anticipated during the scheduled transition to ICD-10.”

After yesterday’s vote in the Senate to delay the ICD-10 implementation deadline by one year, both the American Health Information Management Association and College of Healthcare Information Management Executives issued separate statements expressing their strong disappointment with the extension of the ICD-10 deadline.

The bill is awaiting President Obama’s expected signature. Health Data Management asked the White House for confirmation that the President will sign the bill and has not received a response.

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