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Report: ICD-10 Delay Could be Forthcoming

February 14, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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According to various media reports, Marilyn Tavenner, acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), told the attendees at an American Medical Association (AMA) conference that the agency is considering delaying the ICD-10 implementation.

"I'm committing today to work with you to re-examine the pace at which we implement ICD-10. I want to work together to ensure that we implement ICD-10 in a way that [meets its] goals while recognizing your concerns,” Tavenner said, according to a report from The Hill.

The deadline for ICD-10 implementation is Oct. 1, 2013. It will require healthcare providers to change the billing codes from ICD-9 to ICD-10, which is modernized and updated to include 68,000 possible codes (ICD-9 has 13,000 codes approximately). Critics such as the AMA say this change is too quick for physicians to adapt and will be too costly for healthcare providers.

The report says Tavenner indicated her office would formulate new regulations within the next few days. Other organizations, such as the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) have come out in support of keeping the Oct. 1 deadline in place. AHIMA and the AMA have gone back-and-forth on ICD-10 over the last few weeks.

A CMS source says a statement is in clearance that will constitute as their public comment.

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