Change is inexorable, and ICD-10 is coming to a medical practice near you, in the very near future.  In fact it is coming to Your Practice on October 1st, 2014, whether you want it to or not.  If you are not using ICD-10 by that date, essentially all of your claims will be rejected.

Some are waiting until September 2014 to learn about this. However, that would be like waiting until the June immediately prior to your residency’s start to learn medicine.  While the transition to ICD-10 is not quite as daunting as a 4 year medical curriculum, please do not do yourself the disservice of minimalizing the time requirements, both your own time, as well as the time of your staff, to understand ICD-10 well enough to be able to utilize it in your routine workflow on October 1st, 2014.

We strongly recommend that all medical practices that are currently utilizing ICD-9 codes immediately start the process of learning about ICD-10.  If you look through the Internet you will find predictions of terrible calamity befalling hospitals and independent out-patient medical practices alike if they do not heed the warnings.

So, what is a practice to do?

We strongly recommend getting the best education you can regarding ICD-10, including learning exactly what you need to know about it.  Obviously the coding professionals in the medical office will need to know more than the physicians, who in turn will need to know more than the non-clinical front desk staff.

However, it is imperative that each person who touches the medical record in any capacity be educated to the extent necessary.

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