CHIME: Providers should be in 'lockstep' for ICD-10

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services' proposed year-long delay of the ICD-10 deadline reaches an acceptable middle ground between those pushing for a delay and those wanting to stand pat, officials with the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives said in a letter to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius this week.

CHIME President and CEO Richard Correll and Board Chairman Drex DeFord also called for a "consistent compliance date across the provider community," saying that separating the two would be a "serious mistake."

"All segments of the provider community need to be in lockstep," the letter said.

Correll and DeFord do say, however, that they would be fine with a different--and earlier--compliance deadline for payers. Such a scenario, they say, would allow for doctors and hospitals to test ICD-10 transactions with payers.

Additionally, Correll and DeFord call for any consideration for skipping ICD-10 and going straight to ICD-11 to be dismissed. "While the maturity of ICD-11 may hold great benefits in the future, we believe such claims are speculative, at best, because so much is yet to be developed," the letter says.

Meanwhile, in another letter recently sent to Sebelius, American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) Vice President Dan Rode reiterates his organization's position that any ICD-10 delay is a bad idea, but concedes that if there has to be a delay, it should be capped at one year.

He argues that the healthcare industry has known for 15 years that ICD-10 was coming down the pipe, and that further delay would cause a continued deterioration of health data.

"The industry has had three years to prepare for the transition since the publication of the final rule ... yet significant numbers of healthcare entities have not made adequate progress," Rode says. "Therefore, it does not seem as though provision of more time, by itself, is likely to be sufficient to ensure those lagging in ... preparation are ready by a new compliance date."

To learn more:
- here's the CHIME letter (.pdf)
- here's the AHIMA letter (.pdf)

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