Seventy-nine percent of the nearly 300 healthcare organizations responding to a KPMG survey reported a successful transition to the new ICD-10 coding system since the switch was implemented on October 1. EHR Intelligence reports that, despite mixed feelings about the transition, 51 percent of respondents said they encountered some technical issues, but the transition overall has been successful. Twenty-eight percent said the transition has been smooth and 11 percent said the transition has been a failure.
“ICD-10 is the healthcare industry’s equivalent to the Y2K changeover in scope and has a profound influence on not only the billing and reimbursement, but the ability to track quality of the delivery of healthcare,” said Todd Ellis, managing director at KPMG in a press release. “This is an ongoing process, however, and this transition affects not just technology, but finance, employee training, clinical information, and other functions in healthcare.”
iHealth Beat explains the most common challenges cited include clinical documentation and physician education, IT fixes, lower revenue from coding delays, and rejected medical claims.
“Organizations are beginning to see dips in cash flow due to payers delaying the processing of ICD-10 claims while they ensure their ability to appropriately adjudicate these claims, while others are seeing an increase in claim denials over pre-ICD-10 levels” said Craig Greenberg, KPMG director.
Many organizations (42 percent) felt the challenges they encountered were simply part of ICD-10. Eleven percent said they did not expect to encounter such challenges during the transition.
“While there seems to be a fairly smooth transition to ICD-10, the 11 percent of organizations that are struggling need to be helped,” Ellis said. “The communities these organizations serve depend upon their healthcare providers to meet their medical needs and we need to help them through these challenges. ICD-10’s implementation was a lengthy process and unfortunately they will address these issues or face greater competitive disadvantages in measuring quality and reduced cash flow.”