Grappling with meaningful use and ICD-10 at the same time is no easy task. But Sharp Healthcare, a San Diego-based integrated delivery system with seven hospitals, is making headway, according to CIO Bill Spooner.

Spooner, addressing the World Congress Leadership Summit on ICD-10, said Sharp plans on attesting for meaningful use in 2012. Sharp is running an inpatient EHR, from Cerner, at all seven hospitals, while its physician group uses Allscripts. About 80 percent of orders are processed electronically, Spooner noted. He maintains a meaningful use dashboard on an Excel spreadsheet that details the organization’s progress. Some of the data, such as order utilization, is generated via the EHRs, while other data must be manually calculated.

The conversion to ICD-10 is underway as well, and Spooner said a substantial amount of work remains. “At last count we have 55 applications to convert,” he said. In addition, Spooner says that the delivery system will have to test 125 different transaction “food chains” between itself and its various data trading partners, such as payers and clearinghouses. Seven large payers represent 80 percent of the work.

Sharp began surveying vendors on their ICD-10 plans over a year ago. At that point, Spooner said, responses were hard to get. Now responses are pouring in.

GE, his core billing vendor, provided its conversion timetable at the get-go. But it’s the multitude of smaller vendors that is troublesome. “Their plans are sketchy,” Spooner noted.

--Gary Baldwin


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