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Revenue integrity webcast series: Part 1 recap

ICD-10: Three ways to thrive


With the ICD-10 transition deadline now behind us, how are things going for you in terms of this major coding conversion for health care organizations?

According to our own RSM webcast poll, the majority of attendees indicated an initial decrease in productivity of 10 to 20 percent upon ICD-10 implementation. This slight productivity loss was consistent with other health care industry reporting and certainly not as significant of an interruption as earlier feared. Organizations seemed to be trained and prepared for the change. The webcast presenters also acknowledged that while health care systems have handled the code change well, it will still take some time to determine the ultimate financial impact in terms of denials, payment delays and adjudication changes. Adding to that, presenters indicated there are still areas to assess and improve to ensure complete process optimization.

With that in mind, what should health care organizations do to continue to thrive post-ICD-10? Here are three important considerations.

  • Continue to improve coder productivity by benchmarking, assessing and enhancing your processes. One way to do this is to develop a governance team from different departments addressing front-, middle and back-end processes. These teams can identify future state workflow and perform a gap analysis to identify those areas in need of improvement.
  • Make education a routine process function among your physicians and be creative with their training. Approaches could include one-on-one education (the majority of our webcast attendees, 46.5 percent, chose this training method for their physicians), lectures, quick-tip and pocket cards, weekly emails, newsletters, presentations to new physicians during orientation, and more.
  • Leverage the latest technology for your growing needs. Whether you implement Computer Assisted Coding and/or Clinical Documentation Improvement Systems (CAC/CDIS) technology, the key to selecting the best solution is knowing your specific requirements upfront and conducting a business case to make sure the technology solution and return on investment (ROI) fit your organization. Testing and quality assurance are also essential. And, it’s important to set expectations with leadership and teams. Communicate to them that technology integration takes time to master and fully utilize. In addition, early adopters of the new CAC/CDIS technologies should now go back and take a fresh look at their processes to make sure they are configured correctly and following best practice work flows to maximize ROI.

Questions? We’d love to visit with you more about specific ICD-10 transition challenges you might have. Contact us for more information.


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