ICD-10? Why can’t we just take a shortcut to ICD-11?

ICD-10? Why can’t we just take a shortcut to ICD-11?
If there’s one thing healthcare providers want, it’s more time. More time with their patients, with their families and more time to prepare for upcoming initiatives affecting their practices — specifically, ICD-10. So as we drift further away from the original deadline of the ICD-10 transition and toward the newest date of Oct. 1 — hearing rumors ...

If there’s one thing healthcare providers want, it’s more time. More time with their patients, with their families and more time to prepare for upcoming initiatives affecting their practices — specifically, ICD-10.

So as we drift further away from the original deadline of the ICD-10 transition and toward the newest date of Oct. 1 — hearing rumors of even more delays along the way — there’s one question on everyone’s mind:

“Why don’t we just skip ICD-10 and go straight to ICD-11?” revealed Mike Enos, coding consultant. “That’s the question I get asked a lot — and it makes me chuckle.”

To some, overlooking ICD-10 seems like a feasible solution. ICD-11 is already in its Beta draft, and it is expected to be finalized and submitted to the World Health Assembly in 2017, only two years after the expected U.S. ICD-10 transition date — barring any further delays, of course. So why not make the leap straight to ICD-11?

According to Mike, it’s not quite that simple.

“It’s true that ICD-11 is already being worked on. There’s a Beta draft already,” Mike said. “But you also have to consider that just because ICD-10 is new to us doesn’t mean it’s new. ICD-10 was started in 1983 and completed in 1992. It’s been in use in some countries for 20 years.”

The U.S. version of ICD-10 was created through years of modifications, comment periods and revisions to add policies and procedures. The same will likely be necessary for ICD-11, meaning that even though it will be introduced in 2017, it won’t be ready to implement for several years.

“ICD-11 might be a reality in 2030, but we’re 15 years away at the least,” Mike said. “In fact, if it follows the same timeline as ICD-10, ICD-11 won’t be implemented until 2040. The ICD-9 code set is outdated as it is; there’s no way it will last until ICD-11 is ready.”

Some providers may rejoice at the thought of an extra decade or two to prepare for the change, but several experts recommend that to successfully transition to ICD-11, ICD-10 is a necessary stepping-stone. ICD-11 is built on ICD-10, so implementing the former without first transitioning to the latter would actually make the shift exponentially more difficult.

Skipping ICD-10 would also mean continuing to use ICD-9 codes, which were developed nearly 40 years ago and lack the specificity and data quality to support programs such as meaningful use and value-based reimbursements.

The sooner the U.S. adopts ICD-10, the better equipped the healthcare community will be to begin preparing for ICD-11 — and based on our slow adoption of ICD-10, we might need all the time we can get.

Source: www.greenwayhealth.com