AHIMA: Ten Reasons to Not Delay ICD-10 (ICD-10-CM)

AHIMA: Ten Reasons to Not Delay ICD-10 (ICD-10-CM)

Post #147 Shortlink: http://wp.me/pKrrB-1Xw

This material relates to the forthcoming US specific “clinical modification” of the WHO ICD-10, known as “ICD-10-CM.” It does not relate to other country specific clinical modifications of ICD-10.

Update @ February 27: There has been considerable coverage of HHS’s announcement to delay the compliance date for ICD-10-CM.

Further coverage:

Press release


Industry Experts Respond to Announcement of ICD-10 Deadline Delay

February 27, 2012

Industry experts respond as HHS has confirmed its intent to delay the ICD-10 compliance deadline, according to its latest press release. HCPro contacted numerous industry experts for their thoughts on the recent announcement by CMS. Although reactions are mixed, experts agree that forward progress on ICD-10 readiness for providers is essential…

ICD-10 may not be postponed for everyone

Ken Kerry | February 20, 2012

One school of thought is that it will be delayed for a year or two; but CMS’ announcement mentioned that only “certain healthcare entities” would be granted a reprieve. Which entities? We don’t know yet.

On January 16, 2009, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published a Final Rule in the Federal Register mandating adoption of ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS to replace ICD-9-CM in HIPAA transactions, with a compliance date of October 1, 2013.

Until implementation, codes in ICD-10-CM are not valid for any purpose or use. ICD-10-CM has been subject to partial code freeze since October 1, 2011.

The 2012 release of ICD-10-CM is now available from the CDC site and replaces the December 2011 release:

International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM)


HHS announces delay for compliance

On February 16, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius issued a press release announcing that HHS will initiate a process to postpone the date by which certain health care entities are required to comply with International Classification of Diseases, 10th Edition diagnosis and procedure codes.

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said, “We have heard from many in the provider community who have concerns about the administrative burdens they face in the years ahead.  We are committing to work with the provider community to reexamine the pace at which HHS and the nation implement these important improvements to our health care system.”

HHS has yet to announce a new compliance date but it is speculated that the delay would be for at least one year, rather than for a few months.

Related content:

Post #142 | February 16, 2012

HHS Secretary Sebelius announces intent to delay ICD-10-CM compliance date

For background see: 

Could the U.S skip ICD-10 and leapfrog directly to ICD-11?

February 16, 2012 | Tom Sullivan, Government Health IT

HIMSS statement, February 17, 2012

HIMSS Calls for Maintaining October 1, 2013 ICD-10 Implementation Deadline for Most Healthcare Entities

Information Week report

ICD-10 Delay Worries Health IT Leaders

The train’s already left the station for organizations that have been prepping for an October 2013 ICD-10 deadline, say health IT organizations and CIOs.

Nicole Lewis | InformationWeek |February 22, 2012

Practice Fusion

HHS Asks for a Delay to the Start of ICD-10

Robert Rowley, MD | February 21, 2012

AHIMA issues statement and press release

Yesterday, American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) issued a statement and press release in response to HHS Sebelius’ February 16 announcement to delay the ICD-10-CM compliance date.

AHIMA represents more than 64,000 Health Information Management professionals in the United States and around the world. www.ahima.org

American Health Information Management Association statement and press release


     AHIMA statement IDC-10 Delay 02.17.12

Ten Reasons to Not Delay ICD-10

Feb 22, 2012 01:12 pm | posted by Kevin Heubusch | ICD-10

This week AHIMA announced it will reach out to leaders at the Department of Health and Human Services and urge there be no delay in the implementation of ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS.

“We recommend that HHS reach out to the full healthcare community and gather more information about the great strides many have achieved— in good faith—since the ICD-10 deadline was set in January 2009,” said AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon, quoted in a statement.

Further, AHIMA encouraged the healthcare community to continue its implementation planning and not let up its efforts.

In a statement released today, AHIMA offered 10 reasons not to delay ICD-10 implementation.

Ten Reasons We Need ICD-10 Now

  1. It Enhances Quality Measures. Without ICD-10 data, serious gaps will remain in the healthcare community’s ability to extract important patient health information needed for physicians and others to measure quality care.
  2. Research Capabilities Will Improve Patient Care. Data could be used in a more meaningful way to enable better understanding of complications, better design of clinically robust algorithms, and better tracking of the outcomes of care. Greater detail offers the ability to discover previously-unrecognized relationships or uncover phenomenon such as incipient epidemics early.
  3. Significant Progress Has Already Been Made. For several years, hospitals and healthcare systems, health plans, vendors and academic institutions have been preparing in good faith to put systems in place to transition to ICD-10. A delay would cause an unnecessary setback.
  4. Education Programs Are Underway. To ready the next generation of HIM professionals, academic institutions have set their curriculum for two-year, four-year, and graduate programs to include ICD-10.
  5. Other Healthcare Initiatives Need ICD-10. ICD-10 is the foundation needed to support other national healthcare initiatives such as meaningful use, value-based purchasing, payment reform, quality reporting and accountable care organizations. Electronic health record systems being adopted today are ICD-10 compatible. Without ICD-10, the value of these other efforts is greatly diminished.
  6. It Reduces Fraud. With ICD-10, the detail of health procedures will be easier to track, reducing opportunities for unscrupulous practitioners to cheat the system.
  7. It Promotes Cost Effectiveness. More accurate information will reduce waste, lead to more accurate reimbursement and help ensure that healthcare dollars are used efficiently.

If ICD-10 Is Delayed:

  1. Resources Will Be Lost. For the last three years, the healthcare community has invested millions of dollars analyzing their systems, aligning resources and training staff for the ICD-10 transition.
  2. Costs Will Increase. A delay will cause increased implementation costs, as many healthcare providers and health plans will need to maintain two systems (ICD-9 and ICD-10). Delaying ICD-10 increases the cost of keeping personnel trained and prepared for the transition. Other systems, business processes, and operational elements also will need upgrading. More resources will be needed to repeat some implementation activities if ICD-10 is delayed.
  3. Jobs Will Be Lost.To prepare for the transition, many hospitals and healthcare providers have hired additional staff whose jobs will be affected if ICD-10 is delayed.

And Finally…

We Can’t Wait for ICD-11. The foundations of ICD-11 rest on ICD-10 and the foundation must be laid before a solid structure can be built. ICD-11 will require the development and integration of a new clinical modification system. Even under ideal circumstances, ICD-11 is still several years away from being ready for implementation in the United States.*

In the report by Tom Sullivan (Health Care Finance News, February 16, 2012), Christopher Chute, MD, who chairs the ICD-11 Revision Steering Group, warned of a possible further delay for completion of ICD-11, from 2015 to 2016.

Implementation of ICD-11 has already been shifted from 2012 to 2014, then last year, to 2015+. These are projections for pilot, then global implementation for ICD-11.

The DHHS Office of the Secretary Final Rule document, February 2009, stated:

“We estimated that the earliest projected date to begin rulemaking for implementation of a U.S. clinical modification of ICD–11 would be the year 2020.”

Canada uses a clinical modification of ICD-10 called ICD-10-CA. WHO-FIC meeting materials suggest that Canada might not move onto ICD-11 (or a modification of ICD-11) until 2018+.  Australia, which uses a clinical modification of ICD-10 called ICD-10-AM, is discussing potentially earlier adoption of ICD-11.


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