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Organizations Recognize Long-Term Benefits of ICD-10

As they become more familiar with ICD-10, health care executives recognize the long-term benefits of the updated code set and plan to use it for quality improvement and performance measurement, according to a new report based on a survey by AHIMA and eHealth Initiative (eHI).

Survey results show more respondents plan to use ICD-10 for quality improvement, performance measurement, and outcomes measurement than respondents of a similar study in 2013.

Respondents said they believe ICD-10 will make managing population health and conducting clinical, health services, or translational research easier, and that ICD-10 will ultimately improve the accuracy of claims, quality of care, and patient safety.

A majority of the respondents also indicated they are far enough along in the implementation process to conduct end-to-end testing prior to the compliance deadline of October 1, 2015, although smaller organizations appear less equipped to test.

“These results demonstrate that the health care community has stayed on track with preparation despite delays and that as health care executives continue to learn more about the specificity in ICD-10, they see clear value in it,” says AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon, MBA, RHIA, CAE, FACHE, FAHIMA. “AHIMA will continue to provide training and resources to help health care organizations, including small physician groups, prepare for implementation so all health care organizations and patients will experience the benefits of a modern and robust coding system.”

Four hundred and fifty-four individuals responded to the survey representing a wide range of health care settings, including health care delivery organizations, acute care hospitals, clinics, and physician practices to assess the anticipated affect of ICD-10. Areas of focus in the survey included readiness for testing and implementation, anticipated financial, clinical and operational affects, and the strategic implications of an expanded code set.

While a majority of respondents are ready to implement end-to-end testing, survey results show that smaller organizations are less ready to test or to mitigate a possible decrease in staff productivity. Respondents also indicated they are not aware of when their business partners will be prepared to conduct testing.

“As organizations continue to prepare for implementation, survey results highlight the need for communication and collaboration among health care organizations and business partners,” says eHI CEO Jennifer Covich Bordenick. “By working together, organizations will be better equipped to handle the demand of ICD-10 implementation and ultimately leverage the code set for better health care outcomes.”

As organizations work toward meeting the compliance deadline, AHIMA and eHI recommend the following:

Additional results from the survey include the following:

Source: AHIMA