Key ad­vances in IT

ICD-10 im­ple­men­ta­tion riles physi­cians group

Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS - Paul Barr

HHS un­clogged a back­log of key in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy reg­u­la­tions late last week, in­clud­ing a rule that sets the ICD-10 im­ple­men­ta­tion date for Oct. 1, 2014—to the con­ster­na­tion of a ma­jor physi­cian’s group, the MGMA.

HHS also is­sued a fi­nal rule lay­ing out the re­quire­ments that providers must meet to re­ceive fund­ing un­der Stage 2 of the fed­eral elec­tronic health-record in­cen­tive pro­gram (See story, p. 12).

The rule con­cern­ing the im­ple­men­ta­tion of ICD-10 di­ag­nos­tic and pro­ce­dural codes con­cur­rently fi­nal­ized de­tails on the im­ple­men­ta­tion of a unique health plan iden­ti­fi­ca­tion num­ber in­tended to stream­line billing. While the MGMA roundly crit­i­cized both as­pects of the rule, other in­dus­try groups wel­comed the CMS’ reg­u­la­tions. State­ments largely in sup­port of the ICD-10 rule were is­sued by the Amer­i­can Hospi­tal As­so­ci­a­tion, the Amer­i­can Health In­for­ma­tion Man­age­ment As­so­ci­a­tion, the Col­lege of Health­care In­for­ma­tion Man­age­ment Ex­ec­u­tives and the Work­group for Elec­tronic Data In­ter­change.

The MGMA’s op­po­si­tion to the ICD-10 im­ple­men­ta­tion, even though the date is one year later than planned, stems from the as­so­ci­a­tion’s be­lief that the CMS and the in­dus­try don’t know what they’re get­ting into and should pre­pare for the tran­si­tion. Be­fore set­ting a com­pli­ance date, the CMS should have con­ducted a pi­lot test, con­ducted an im­pact anal­y­sis and fully eval­u­ated al­ter­na­tive ap­proaches, said Robert Ten­nant, se­nior pol­icy ad­viser at the MGMA. “To move for­ward with­out do­ing a pi­lot test to us is ir­re­spon­si­ble,” Ten­nant said. “I don’t think we’re ask­ing for the moon here; we’re ask­ing for due dili­gence on the part of the gov­ern­ment.”

“In­evitably, we’ll have prob­lems around the com­pli­ance date and there’ll be cash flow dis- rup­tion and peo­ple will be up­set,” Ten­nant said. He com­pared it to the rocky tran­si­tion to the Ac­cred­ited Stan­dards Com­mit­tee’s X12 Ver­sion 5010 fam­ily of claims stan­dards but said ICD-10 dis­rup­tions will be on a larger scale. The MGMA op­posed the health plan iden­ti­fier reg­u­la­tions be­cause im­ple­men­ta­tion will be too far in the fu­ture—2016—and they’re not spe­cific enough to ben­e­fit physi­cians, Ten­nant said

The CMS ad­dressed the readi­ness is­sue in the rule, writ­ing that the agency agrees “that im­ple­men­ta­tion and test­ing plans are es­sen­tial for a suc­cess­ful tran­si­tion to ICD-10.” “We are eval­u­at­ing meth­ods to es­tab­lish a com­mon un­der­stand­ing and will is­sue guid­ance and of­fer gen­eral as­sis­tance on time­lines and test­ing pro­to­cols through ed­u­ca­tion and outreach.”

AHIMA of­fi­cials are on the op­po­site side of the spec­trum of the MGMA, and while they had urged the CMS to not de­lay im­ple­men­ta­tion by a year, they sup­port the rule be­cause it pro­vides cer­tainty to the in­dus­try. With­out a dead­line, it’s pos­si­ble that some or­ga­ni­za­tions were not pre­par­ing as quickly as they should, said Sue Bow­man, se­nior di­rec­tor for cod­ing pol­icy and com­pli­ance at AHIMA.

“I think it’s a great day for health­care and a great step for­ward in the … mod­ern­iza­tion of our health­care sys­tem,” Bow­man said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.