ICD-10 Whitepaper and Information Overload

I just googled the term ‘ICD10 Whitepaper’. Google said, “About 134,000 results” found. Plus, there were so many paid adverts and placements. If you search for ‘ICD10 information’ you can multiply the search results by 4!

Why? There is a lot of fear and even misinformation surrounding ICD-10.

There are three kinds of sources publishing information related to ICD-10.

I just googled the term ‘ICD10 Whitepaper’. Google said, “About 134,000 results” found. Plus, there were so many paid adverts and placements. If you search for ‘ICD10 information’ you can multiply the search results by 4!

Why? There is a lot of fear and even misinformation surrounding ICD-10.

There are three kinds of sources publishing information related to ICD-10.

  1. CMS and government websites (eg www.cms.gov, www.medicaid.gov)
  2. Academies. Physician and provider academies have generally done a good job of publishing information and distributing them via websites as well as member newsletters and emails.
  3. Vendors. EMR, EHR, Practice Management and medical billing vendors have also created and published lots of content. This is the biggest category of content publishers. Some of it is for their customers. Most of it is to entice more people to their website, their products and services in the hope that providers sign up with them.

You will find written content in the form of “Whitepapers” that is supposed to be vendor neutral information that anyone can use to educate themselves. They can take the shape of thought leadership articles or even blogs.

The other form is that of Webinars. Some vendors and consultants have offered Seminars in the form of ‘webinars’ (Live or Recorded) that focus on and address main concerns that most providers have.

Finally you can sign up for and attend live physical events related to ICD-10. Some Academies organize these during their regional or national meetings. I have also seen experts and consultants offer these seminars. Some offer free seminars, some charge. 

For Fee seminars are usually more focused to your specialty and are much more detailed, and can also have hands-on step by step workshops helping providers and practices get ready for ICD-10.

What should you do?

1. Read some Articles or Whitepapers. Just don’t overload yourself. Focus on those that are published by:

  • CMS and Government. These articles generally try to address regulatory implications, which is important.
  • Your Vendor. They are and should be your first point of contact for anything to do with ICD-10. You are going to use their software to submit your claims and be compliant so that you can get paid. You should get not only general information, but also specifics about using the software to create appropriate claims.
  • Your specialty Academy. Academy should be your source of information about mapping out ICD-9 to ICD-10, what codes and modifiers you should use to maximize your reimbursement.

We are not too far from the deadline. It is time to take action. Your information gathering and education phase should be over by now. 

You are still not ready?

Nothing to panic though. My simple advise is to first talk to your vendor as soon as possible. Find out if:

  • Is your software ready and enabled?
  • Do they have anyone that can help you prepare and update your Superbill? They may charge you consultation fees and that is normal because as a vendor of software, help with your Superbill is generally not covered as standard fee. Whoever you hire/engage, be prepared to spend time with them if you don’t have someone on your staff that is a billing/coding expert.

Second – if your vendor does not have a billing/coding expert for your specialty on staff, that’s ok. You can then look for help with one of many experts in your specialty. Talk to your Academy – they should be able to help locate consultants.

Finally, make sure your Superbill is ready one month before the deadline.

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