Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago have determined that the transition to ICD-10 could cause complications in hospital safety assessments.
The researchers looked at the transition from ICD-9 and ICD-10 and found that in some cases, the translations or mappings are convoluted. As an example, they note that a hemorrhage coded in ICD-9 may have any of several different codes in ICD-10 depending on which organ system is involved. This, the researchers say, make it difficult to tell whether a hospital’s safety record is improving, or information is simply slipping through the cracks.
“It’s possible to select ‘accurate’ new ICD-10 codes that make you look safer than you are because of the differences in the design of the ICD-10 system,” Andrew Boyd, assistant professor of biomedical and health information sciences at UIC and first author of the paper, said in a statement. He added that some hospitals may look less safe than they really are because of apparent increases in patient safety indicators that are actually the same indicators calculated differently.
This is the latest effort from the University of Illinois at Chicago to explore the perils of the ICD-9 to ICD-10 transition. In June, researchers from the university determined that pediatricians may lose money and clinical information thanks to the ICD-10 transition.
The latest report was published online in Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (JAMIA).
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