Healthcare Administrators "Terrified" as ICD-10 Compliance Date Nears

Healthcare administrators are "terrified" as the 2013 ICD-10 implementation date looms closer, according to a Government Health IT report.

Nearly one decade before the compliance deadline, the Medical Group Management Association convened for a session on the code scheme. The room was overflowing with attendees, most of them terrified by the prospect of transitioning to a new coding system. Today, with two years remaining before the Oct. 1, 2013, compliance date, the mandate is sending "shivers up peoples' spines," according to Bill Bernstein, chairman of the healthcare division at law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips.

In a 2010 presentation, the Department of Veterans Affairs outlined the anticipated local impact of ICD-10. The fallout includes increased staff time for modifications and training, decreased productivity of coders and providers, potential for staff turnover and potential loss of revenue, among other effects.

Providers are also concerned that some payors will not adhere to the Oct. 1 implementation deadline, forcing practices and hospitals to run ICD-9 and ICD-10 side-by-side while insurance companies catch up.

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