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ICD-10 going well, but possible dangers loom

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shark

Medscape reports that implementation of ┬áthe new ICD-10 diagnostic codes by physician practices “resembles a calm, glassy stretch of ocean broken by a solitary shark fin.”

The news service reports that “by almost all accounts, the switch from the old ICD-9 codes to their more voluminous and complicated replacements has not produced a feared spike in rejected or denied insurance claims that would interrupt cash flow. Physicians who code claims and third-party payers that process them are mostly getting ICD-10 right.”

“However, a few experts have heard unsettling boos about rising denial rates, and almost everyone with something to say about codes and claims processing is apprehensive about what will happen after Oct. 1. That date marks the end of a 12-month grace period set by Medicare and a number of large health insurers for tolerating less than perfect ICD-10 coding. If and when these payers bare their teeth over ICD-10, there could be blood in the water.”

Also, “A March survey by the Workgroup for Electronic Data Exchange found a slight decrease in productivity for healthcare providers who grapple with code selection and required clinical documentation. However, it is likely that with time, more providers will master the demands of ICD-10 coding and resume their former pace.”

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