By now, healthcare organizations should be either executing their ICD-10 plans or just starting a year long effort to transition to ICD-10 by October 1st, 2014 and finally bringing the United States on par with the rest of the developed world. If you haven’t started by now, well, you are late out of the starting gate!
Healthcare Providers must realize that much of 2014 would be focused on Testing with EHRs and Third Party systems and testing with their primary payor organizations and clearinghouses. Training the physicians and coders on the new IC 10 codes and diagnosis terms and giving them practice through a Dual coding period is something that each organization would be contemplating.
Being able to leverage Computer Assisted Coding (CAC) and good, continuous training of existing coders is something that each organization must focus their efforts on. It is much easier to train an existing employee than find and on-board a new coder so incentives for staying with the organization must be thought through by HR, Medical Record and Operational leadership teams. Regular organizational steering committee updates should be a part and parcel of this initiative so that everyone is on the same page and communication is not misaligned or misunderstood.
Overall, a good project charter, project schedule and testing plans that have the buy in of all of the parties in this organizational wide initiative is a must.