Why ICD-10?

There were four main reasons that the federal government moved to ICD-10 as a code set standard: (1) ICD-9 dates to 1979 and its functionality has been “exhausted” and does not reflect “new and changing medical advancements”; (2) Parts of the ICD-9-CM were full, which required putting codes in “topically unrelated chapters,” burdensome for healthcare providers in a move toward more efficiency; (3) Insufficient detail opportunities: “[I]n an age of electronic health records, it does not make sense to use a coding system that lacks specificity and does not lend itself well to updates…Emerging health care technologies, new and advanced terminologies, and the need for interoperability amid the increase in…

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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…

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Migrating to ICD-10

Under the final ICD-10 rule, all healthcare providers will utilize ICD-10-CM to code diagnoses beginning October 1, 2013. For procedure coding under the final ICD-10 rule, physicians and all healthcare providers other than inpatient hospitals will continue to use the current procedure coding standard: Current Procedural Terminology, 4th Edition (CPT-4) and the Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS). Inpatient hospital services procedures will be coded using ICD-10-PCS codes, which provide facility related procedure codes suitable to inpatient environments.