The more things change, the more they stay the same
Here we are again, with another ICD-10 deadline delay and another ICD-10 survey that shows another set of statistics illustrating (can you guess?) that many providers have shown little progress when it comes to ICD-10 preparedness.
And we get it, believe us. How many times have we all heard “this is it, no more deadline delays,” only to have another deadline delay.
So perhaps it’s not surprising that a new survey by the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) reveals that the delay to 2015 has caused “two-thirds of provider respondents to slow down efforts or place them on hold.”
As reported recently by Health Data Management:
- Approximately 50% of providers indicated that they’ve completed their impact assessment—the same percentage reflected in the group’s 2013 study
- Only 35% stated that they’ve begun external testing, compared to the 2013 study which had 60% reporting that they planned to begin testing by mid 2014
In the online HDM article, WEDI Chairman Jim Dailey is quoted as writing: “While the delay provides more time for the transition to ICD-10, many organizations are not taking full advantage of this additional time. Unless all industry segments make a dedicated effort to continue to move forward with their implementation efforts, there will be significant disruption on Oct. 1, 2015.”
No truer words were ever spoken. While many already-strapped providers are allowing the delay to alter their focus on preparedness, with many likely skeptical that the deadline will ever come, the truth is that it will. And when it does, providers that aren’t prepared will find their revenue cycles in a lot of trouble. Imagine your Medicare reimbursements stopping cold. Could your practice survive that?
In spite of this last delay, and regardless of whether there’s another delay or not, providers must do everything they can to be ready. So here’s the tip of the day: assume it’s coming next October 1st and do what you need to be ready—starting now.
Speaking of “doing what you need to be ready,” stay tuned for future blogs on that exact subject.