Classification Coding Systems

ICD-10 diagnosis and procedure codes are “classification coding systems” useful for conducting administrative transactions. SNOMED-CT® (Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine–Clinical Terms) is a “clinically complex terminology standard” designed for the primary documentation of clinical care that will enhance interoperability with electronic health record (EHR) systems. According to the preamble of the proposed ICD-10 rule published on August 22, 2008, “The benefits of using SNOMED-CT® increase if it is linked to a classification system such as ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS for the purpose of generating health information that is necessary for statistical analysis and reimbursement. The use of both SNOMED-CT® and ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS brings value to the development of interoperable electronic health records (EHRs). The linkage of these two different coding systems for multiple purposes is accomplished through mapping” [73 Federal Register 49803]. According to the final ICD-10 rule, “plans are underway” to “link SNOMED-CT® to ICD-10 code sets” [74 Federal Register 3332].

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