Taking the ICD-10 Transition in an Upp-ward Direction.

As you know, nearly every healthcare organization in the country will be affected by the transition to ICD-10. Did you also know that organizations like banks, brokerages, clearinghouses and even automotive insurers will also be affected by the change?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Making Your ICD-10 Conversion Project a Success

In our client base, no two projects will be the same, but the big picture strategy and transition process must be highly repeatable. Understanding the process from beginning to end and understanding how far-reaching the successful use of ICD-10 coding will be helps you become a highly valuable asset within the healthcare consulting industry over the next few years.

Learn the Code Set Nuances

Nothing will prepare you better than familiarizing yourself with the actual ICD-10 coding scheme and the way it differs (read: granularity) from ICD-9. Make the most of your opportunities to get in, see what the codes look like and get a feel for how they will affect an organization.

The less time you spend learning the codes on the job, the more valuable you’ll be to your client from the start. You’ll also be acting as an advocate for the new coding system by helping demystify it and quell the concerns of other team members.

Instructional videos such as code W55.42, satirize the extreme specificity of the ICD-10 codes by noting that a patient was “struck by a pig while wrestling,” and it highlights just how necessary an in-depth understanding of the new code set will be to your clients. ICD-10 will prove daunting not just for the scope of the project, but also due to the large amount of end-user training required to understand the endless possibilities that come with the code. If you’re able to help decrease that learning curve, you will be all the more valuable.

Be Open to Change

How many times have you observed an internal process that was inherently wrong? Now is your opportunity to put changes into effect. Embracing change will allow you to credibly present operational improvements. Start at the beginning and scrutinize how data flows through the organization, how it is accessed and where it is used outside the organization (ie, payments and reporting). Voicing opportunities to improve the process will make you a thought leader and therefore much more valuable to your client.

This is an excellent time to suggest improvements and to devise new processes. Ignore your place in the organizational chart and become an agent of change during the transition process and you’ll be a big part of the solution.

Stay Informed

Spend a few moments each day reading news about the transition to ICD-10. Set-up a Google Alert so the latest articles, blog posts and resources from around the web are delivered to your inbox daily. Share articles with your colleagues and connections so they in-turn can share content with you.
Start your learning today by reviewing the following sources of ICD-10 information:

Truth #1

The bottom line for our clients is that an inability to accurately and efficiently operate in an ICD-10 world will delay or prevent reimbursement. No organization will be able to survive by being non-compliant.

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