One of the webinars that we held last month was about two big programs with really big changes coming next year: ICD-10 and Meaningful Use and how they will affect imaging centers and orthopedic practices. I’ll share a few takeaways here. You’re welcome to visit our website any time and watch the recording
If you’re a healthcare provider and looking at ICD-10 and MU2, you might be a bit stressed about 2014… like new baby or new job kind of stressed. Like with many stressful situations though, I think there are some really positive things to look forward to once you get through it all.
Are you hoping ICD-10 will just be postponed again? Dr. Mostashari made it clear last month that it’s moving forward – no more extensions. That means October 1, 2014 is the date to be ready.
While the volume of codes to work with in ICD-10 is imposing (13,000 codes under ICD-9 CM will expand to more than 68,000 and 3,000 codes under ICD-9 PCS will expand to more than 87,000), the more challenging part will be to train everyone about the new codes and how to use them…and that’s not just your coders and billing staff. For example, orders from referring physicians and physician’s reports will need more detail, so your PAs and nurses will need to know to look for those details, so that in the end, coders and billing staff have the information they need for claims.
There’s a solid payoff with ICD-10. It's replacing a 30-year system, so terms will be updated and be consistent with current medical practices. There's room for growth of new codes. And from a patient's perspective, I like that it will add more specificity. If I get a hand X-ray, ICD-9 can't identify if it's my left or right hand. ICD-10 will.
Like ICD-10, there are multiple factors that make MU complex. Timing-wise, because the MU program has flexible start dates, that means the Stage 2 start dates are going to vary. You might ask 'so what'? You start when you start right? While that's true, Meaningful Use Stage 2 increases interoperability requirements between providers, so if you're working with referring physicians who will start MU2 next year (and you likely are), they'll expect you to support their MU2 efforts. If you can’t, they might move on and work with providers that do.
We expect some of the new and updated requirements will be challenging. Image ordering and sharing of results are especially interesting. There’s a core requirement that 30% of imaging (or radiology) orders must be entered using CPOE. There’s also a menu option that 10% of imaging results must be accessible via a certified EHR. So if you have referring physicians choose that menu option for results, they’ll be looking to work with imaging centers that can accommodate them. That’s really challenging, especially if you don’t know which referring physicians choose that option. That said, there’s a huge payoff. Once you’re sharing results electronically with a referring physician, you’ll have a much tighter connection with them and the physician will have much more incentive to keep working with your business.
There’s much more to ICD-10 and MU and again our webinar
has more details as do areas we set up on our website.
What do you think? Are you stressing out about ICD-10 and/or MU2? Or not? We’d love to hear from you in the Comments area below.