A whopping 83 percent of healthcare executive respondents to a recent survey believe that the code switchover will happen on October 1, 2015, without further delays.
The survey, conducted by software testing vendor QualiTest, also found that the same percentage of executives indicated that their important health information management systems have been upgraded to software releases supporting ICD-10 and that when the new code set is implemented on October 1 their HIM systems will function properly.
While just 17 percent of execs in the survey said they expect another delay, if one member of Congress has his way, ICD-10 will never be implemented by the U.S. healthcare industry. Rep. Ted Poe (R-Tex.) has introduced H.R. 2126, the Cutting Costly Codes Act of 2015, seeking not to delay ICD-10 implementation but to prevent the code set from ever seeing the light of day.
The bill has a powerful supporterthe nations largest physician organization. In a May 14 letter to Poe, the American Medical Association expressed its strong support for the proposed legislation, which AMA argued takes the prudent approach to set aside the implementation of ICD-10 and seek solutions that mitigate the disruption to physician practices when advancing to a new diagnostic code set.
Another piece of legislation introduced in the House of RepresentativesH.R. 2247, the Increasing Clarity for Doctors by Transitioning Effectively Now (ICD-TEN) Actwould require Medicare to conduct comprehensive, end-to-end ICD-10 testing to assess whether the Medicare fee-for-service claims processing system will function properly.
However, the QualiTest survey found that more than half of healthcare execs (56 percent) indicated that their organizations participated in end-to-end ICD-10 testing conducted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in January 2015. And, 61 percent of those surveyed revealed that they plan to participate in remaining CMS end-to-end testing. At the same time, 67 percent said that their organizations conducted some form of ICD-10 testing with clearinghouses.
Yet, in the survey, only 28 percent of respondents indicated that their organizations conducted any ICD-10 revenue impact testing with payers. In addition, more than two-thirds of execs (67 percent) said they believe that their revenue will change when ICD-10 cuts over on October 1.
To allay these kinds of concerns, the ICD-TEN Act calls for an 18-month transition period beginning with the October 1 ICD-10 implementation deadline, during which no claim submitted for payment by a provider would be denied as a result of using an unspecified or inaccurate code.
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