31 Dec Is Your Practice ICD-10 Ready?
The new ICD-10 coding index is detailed, revamped, and updated with the most current descriptions, diseases, and injuries. It is vital that your medical facility or practice is ready to implement the new coding system, as using the wrong codes and classifications can lead to fines, penalties, or even lawsuits.
Seek CMS Assistance
If your practice needs additional information regarding the ICD-10, contact the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on how to implement the new system. The CMS professionals understand the proper protocols for coding and billing medical supplies, services, and procedures.
Budget for the Program
The new ICD-10 system is available as a software program, but it often has a hefty price tag. For a small or private practice, the total cost including the program itself averages $56,000 to $226,000. Large practices can expect to pay anywhere from $2,000,000 to $8,000,000. If these costs are not feasible, contact the CMS for assistance in making the funds available or with assistance in training the staff yourself.
Install the Software
It is best to hire a professional to install new ICD-10 software. While it may seem simple, additional protocols and commands are required to complete a safe installation. This also includes testing the program. There are instances where ICD-10 has a hiccup or pause during installation and some categorizations can be missed.
If the ICD-10 system is not tested before it is really put to use, it can cause the practice to have to pay again for proper installation. When something like this occurs, the practice can end up suffering financially. The average cost ICD-10 is around $60,000 just for the program and another $25,000 for testing.
Train the Staff
It is crucial that you do not attempt to train the staff yourself unless you receive proper ICD-10 training materials from CMS. Paying a professional to properly train you and your staff is ideal. These professionals have already undergone extensive training to learn the new system and how it works. They can provide hands-on training for your staff, which is priceless.
Create a Compliance Team
Once your staff is fully trained, and can use ICD-10 without much trouble, you should implement a compliance team. This may mean that you have to bring on additional staff if your current personnel cannot handle the additional workload. The compliance team’s duties include verifying and examining all records made using the ICD-10 system.
The instance that a mistake is noticed, it needs to be fixed right away. The compliance team should make the physician or medical facility owner aware of the infraction and schedule retraining with the employee/s responsible for making the mistake.
In order for your practice or medical facility to be completely ready for ICD-10, you must first look at the cost. You have to be able to afford the program, training, installation, and maintenance on the program.
Training should be scheduled over a period of time to prevent information overload. As you prepare to implement the newly updated system, make sure that each staff member has a cheat sheet to help them navigate through the program and a head staff member to go to with questions.