TL;DR
Some physicians are still resisting ICD-10 implementation due to negative effects it may have on smaller practices revenue stream. Both EHR vendors and consumers need to both push for upgrades in order to comply with the looming deadline.

ICD-10 Deadline Pushed to October 2015

The ICD-10 deadline has been pushed back to October 2015, at which point the new coding system will be implemented. Many physicians are concerned about what the new codes could mean for their medical practices.

Preparing for a new set of classification codes will be a long process for practices and will be a substantial adjustment. The main concern for smaller practices is that this could have a negative effect on their revenue, which they cannot afford. However, many organizations, such as the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management (PAHCOM), are training members to prepare for the upcoming changes.

Humana contacted EHR vendors, looking to conclude which of them would be supplying upgrades for ICD-10. Of those who were surveyed, only 37 replied, but consistently refused to answer. This situation could make it further difficult for practices attempting to prepare for the new codes. Consumers haven’t been requesting upgrades; however, and so, vendors haven’t felt the need to offer them. Also, with the deadline having been delayed so many times, vendors haven’t had to deal with the issue yet.

Practices need to be persistent with their EHR vendors and demand software upgrades so that, come implementation time, this won’t be a problem. Vendors, on the other hand, should be more proactive regarding ICD-10, as the deadline is approaching within the next 15 months.

Both consumers and vendors should take advantage of this time in order to ensure that the ICD-10 changes go smoothly for everyone.

Author: Apoorva Anupindi

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