Providers may already be behind on ICD-10 implementation

The October 1, 2013 deadline to implement ICD-10 coding may seem comfortingly far away, but according to a recent study, if you're not planning for the change now, you may already be behind. Worse, the feds don't plan to offer you any wiggle room whatsoever, which means that if you're still working out the kinks by deadline time, you could lose reimbursement money.

The study, which was done by the North Carolina Healthcare Information and Communications Alliance and the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange, created a timeline calculating how many days each ICD-10 preparation step will take to complete.

The numbers are daunting. For example, NCHICA and WEDI concluded that it will take providers almost 1,286 work days to implement ICD-10. That provider number includes 256 days to organize the implementation project, plus 36 months for finding process improvements, 14 months for internal systems design, 12 months for testing, 12 months for deploying vendor code and 10 months for external testing. Whew! Along the way, meanwhile, they should expect to allow vendors to put in 1,521 work days.

To learn more about this research:
- read this Health Leaders Media piece

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