DURHAM, N.C., March 3, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Want to determine whether your ICD-10 systems will be ready when the new diagnosis coding system takes effect? You can test out your ICD-10 coding skills this spring with a dry run that CMS plans to offer practices who want to submit sample ICD-10 claims, CMS announced in MLN Matters article MM8465, published on Nov. 1.
During the week of March 3 through March 7, 2014, your MAC will allow you to send in your test claims that include ICD-10 codes. If you have difficulty processing the claims, you'll be able to contact the help desk to figure out what went wrong. In addition, you will get electronic acknowledgement of your test claims that will tell you whether they were accepted or rejected.
After the testing period ends, CMS will share information about the percentage of test claims that were accepted versus rejected and will offer additional information about lessons learned during the testing period.
To read more about the ICD-10 test dates, visit the link at www.cms.gov/Outreach-and-Education/Medicare-Learning-Network-MLN/MLNMattersArticles/Downloads/MM8465.pdf
In the meantime, you should continue making preparations for ICD-10. Your ICD-10 preparations should be focusing on both coding training and process changes at this point.
Don't wait until the last minute to get started with training. If you're unsure of where to start, get an ICD-10 book and begin browsing the codes to get a feel for them and their format. You may be surprised at the similarities to ICD-9. Many coders are happy to find that the new code system isn't as scary as they feared.
Good idea: Take the ICD-10 coding guidelines and assign a chapter to each person on your team. Have them discuss and compare the differences from ICD-9. This will help you start to narrow down the codes that will have the biggest impact in your agency.
Send at least one person from your agency for ICD-10 training now. Then she can report back and share what she learns.
The coming transition to the ICD-10 code set isn't just about coding. The changes will impact every aspect of your agency processes.
To make certain you're ready for the Oct. 1, 2014 transition deadline, take a closer look at your current processes. Conduct a thorough assessment and identify any operational challenges your agency faces. This way, you can develop and implement solutions before the deadline.
As you begin to map out the steps in your transition, you'll need to establish the project structure, responsible parties, and highlight clinician and coding champions who can be assets. You should also create a budget. Be sure to include software upgrades, training needs, and productivity loss/gain.
Next, talk to all those involved to make sure they're up-to-speed with what's coming. And make certain to monitor the impact of the transition on personnel, claims, reimbursement, denials, and rejections.
For more practical advice like this, check out this specialty-specific ICD-10 training to prepare coders and physicians for more numerous and specific coding options. AudioEducator's ICD-10 training sessions will help you assess where you are in the training process.
If you are a provider, then you need to understand how ICD-10 requires specific documentation — documentation that differs from what was sufficient for ICD-9. If you don't meet the new documentation standards, then you won't be paid what you ethically deserve.
If you are a coder, you must know how to translate the clinical information from the operative report into the ICD-10 system. One incorrect character and your entire claim will be undermined.
At AudioEducator, physician training is available in following specialties:
Mental and Behavioral
To register for ICD 10 training webinar for your specialty visit http://www.audioeducator.com/hot-topics/icd-10.html
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