ICD-10 Date of Oct. 1, 2013 Announced

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In AAPC News
January 16, 2009
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The AAPC’s efforts to push back the proposed ICD-10-CM implementation date of October 1, 2011 proved successful when the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) moved the date back to October 1, 2013.

HHS, with approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) finalized and approved the ruling on implementation dates for ICD-10-CM. In quick summary, the ruling requires the X12 standard, version 5010 electronic filing standards by January 1, 2012 and ICD-10-CM code set by October 1, 2013. In the final ruling, 5010 standards were moved back by a year and a half and ICD-10-CM codes moved back by two years. You can find the full ruling at: http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/pdf/E9-743.pdf

The AAPC commends and thanks our members for submitting comments. Clearly our submissions had a great effect on the final ruling as noted on page 6, “The majority of commenters, including individual providers and industry associations, supported a compliance date of October 1, 2014 which they said could be less costly, allow more time for education, and would better ensure that the desired benefits of the ICD-10-CM and ICD- 10-PCS code sets are achieved. The majority of submission that supported a 2014 compliance date were form letters submitted by members representing the position of one industry professional association.”

In the face of opposition from other coding organizations, the AAPC stood firm in its belief that a delay was necessary and in fact would reduce the overall cost of implementation. The delay of two years is a victory for all providers, payers and coders. It gives everyone appropriate time to upgrade or put in new systems, train coders, physicians and auxiliary personnel and do so without significant interruption of their practices.

The October 1, 2013 date is a firm date, in other words ICD-9 codes will not be able to be used to report services performed after that date. In order to avoid entities from having to maintain the capacity to work with both coding systems after that date, the existence of crosswalks, mapping, and guidelines will enable them to move from ICD-9 to ICD-10 on and after this date. There is a mapping program between ICD-9-CM diagnosis codes and ICD-10-CM located at both the Centers for Disease Control Web page at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/about/otheract/icd9/icd10cm.htm and the on the CMS Web page at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/ICD10/02_ICD-10-PCS.asp. (HHS appears to have taken the position that the crosswalks and mappings are well on their way to being in place.)

For the period around October 1, 2013, the usual coding rule for inpatient services will apply: the code in use on the date of discharge not the date of admission will be the one employed; therefore, if a patient is discharged on or after October 1, 2013, ICD-10 must be used.

You might ask, “What’s next?” Next is to determine a time frame for implementation procedures. As we stated in our last EdgeBlast, payers and large providers with large IT facilities will need to move first because the required system changes will be huge. The AAPC does have an implementation training plan and timetable which we will announce before our April national conference in Las Vegas. We do not believe coders need to jump quickly into training because 3 or 4 years is a long time to retain the training knowledge. However, despite the HHS assumption that outpatient coders are part-time and will only require 10 hours of training (pages 16-17 within the final ICD-10-CM ruling), we are quite sure it will need to be much more than that.

There are other organizations, coder credentialing and otherwise, that are attempting to get everyone to panic and jump quickly into training. We reiterate that it would be a mistake for any coder to jump into training immediately. For example, in 2009, the only training one might desire is to learn what needs to eventually be done and how to develop your plan for full implementation. That will be part of the overall AAPC plan you will hear of soon.

The AAPC and many other organizations will have quality training available to you on ICD-10-CM implementation. We encourage all members to evaluate the quality, cost, timing, location and other factors personal to each member to get your best value. In 2013, the AAPC will offer up to 8 regional conferences focused solely on ICD-10 and our national conference in both 2012 and 2013 will have a significant number of tracks on ICD-10. We will also offer distance learning, classroom workshops, audio conferences and other tools to help you, physicians and interested others.

With proper planning and discretion, all will be able to be trained and ready to implement this significant change before October 1, 2013.

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