ICD-9 update; PECOS requirement delay;

> Let your coders know: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the annual update to the ICD-9-CM codes via Transmittal 1996 (change request 7006). The updated codes take effect on Oct. 1. Transmittal

> CMS will delay enforcement of the new law (effective July 6) that requires a Medicare-enrolled physician or eligible professional to order home health services, durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS), and certain items and services under Medicare Part B. The goal of the delay, which means providers won't see any automatic rejections yet for those services, is to address provider concerns about the Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System (PECOS), Medicare's electronic enrollment system. Press release

> Detroit hospitals are seeing increased competition from private physician-owned surgery centers, reports The Detroit News. Article

> A Medicare competitive bidding program is scheduled to launch in nine U.S. metropolitan areas next year. As the program gradually expands nationwide, it is expected to save $17 billion over 10 years, but medical equipment suppliers and one Florida congressman are trying to stop implementation, reports Health News Florida. Article

> Healthcare in June continued to be one of the nation's economic engines, adding 9,300 new jobs, but hospitals haven't been invited to the party, reports Healthcare Finance News. Article

And Finally ... Not even an ocean of red ink would make this OK. Article