ICD-10 delay likely to cost healthcare industry billions: Proficient ICD-10 Coders in demand!

Even as the Department of Health & Human Services’ in order to reduce regulatory burdens, announced last month it would consider delaying the ICD-10 implementation deadline for certain entities, subsequent industry reactions depicted healthcare professionals being primarily not in favor of such a delay. Moreover a Survey conducted among more than 50 senior healthcare professionals attending the 2012 ICD-10 Summit, hosted by Edifecs, stated that most of the participants perceived a delay rather than improve would cause significant adverse effects on the healthcare industry.

The survey findings on ICD-10 delay:

64% (Nearly 2/3rdof respondents) Stated a delay will not improve readiness
76% Stated a delay will harm other healthcare reform efforts
69% Stated a 2year delay would be either “potentially catastrophic” or “unrecoverable”

Healthcare industry outlook towards Cost Implications due to a delay:

Healthcare professionals and the industry observe a delay would result in halting or slowing down work on ICD-10 which would derail the healthcare organization’s progress resulting in high cost implications. With both payers and providers investing heavily for the ICD-10 switch, cost is the chief concern. Hence the industry is in favor of moving ahead while they await the final decision on the extended deadline regarding entities which will be affected.

The cost of a one-year delay to be between 25 – 30%, while officials  estimate a one year delay based on existing overall cost estimates for ICD-10 from multiple sources, to cost the industry anywhere from $475 million to more than $4 billion.

A delay of longer than a year as per 85% of respondents surveyed said would freeze budgets, slow down schedules or stop work altogether, while 59% opined that the date should be universal for all covered entities rather than mandating different compliance dates for different types of entities, the main driver behind the same being the significant cost and effort involved for the dual processing in ICD-9 and ICD-10 code sets.

Proficient ICD-10 Coders in demand!

Hence with majority of physicians vary of a delay continue their preparation for ICD-10, Billers and Coders proficient in ICD-10 transition are the need of the hour and highly demanded. As adoption of ICD-10 will lead to expansion in the number of codes available from the currently used ICD-9 codes- organizations focusing on a successful ICD-10 implementation in 2013 are cautioned to start revamping their coder development and retention strategies, making ICD-10 coders in demand.

Projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics depict a growth in job levels for coders far above average: 20% from 2008 – 2018 and Economic Modeling Specialists Inc. project growth of 8% between 2011- 2013. Physicians amidst the transforming healthcare environment as a feasible option are opting for services of medical billers and coders who are proactive and prepared with material-requisites for ICD-10.

Personnel updated at Medicialbillersandcoders.com are viable option for physicians in smooth transition to ICD-10; equipped with experience in HIPAA, ICD-10 and other compliances. Moreover the unique ICD-10 Training Program encompassing 87 weeks of ICD-10 training and updates – strives to outline at no cost to medical billers and coders information & training- right from how ICD-10 will affect healthcare to how ICD-10 needs to be implemented within different specialties to ensure optimum revenue cycle management post ICD-10.