ICD-10 Updates: Are your codes specific enough?

ICD-10 has been in use since October 1, 2015, but thanks to a code freeze put in place to allow providers time to adjust to the new format, the majority of codes had been set since 2011. That all changed last fall when the first update to ICD-10 was released on October 1, 2016, mainly adding additional detail to existing code sets, such as adding laterality or severity previously missing on codes like primary open-angle glaucoma. Five months on, we still see providers selecting outdated codes.

The most important point is for providers to stay current with coding changes. Your electronic health records (EHR) and practice management software should provide automatic updates, and the best systems have a keyword searchable database to help you find codes without knowing them by heart. However, a lot of these systems also allow you to save favorites—a time saver for sure, but also a potential headache when codes change.

To avoid delays in claim processing, providers should set aside time to review any saved codes. Additionally, make sure to check with your industry organizations for specific coding changes. Expect to see regular ICD-10 coding updates come into effect every October going forward.

About Fast Pay Health RCM: At Fast Pay Health, our revenue cycle management specialists take care of the billing hassle to maintain consistent cash flow and improve the turn-around time on your claims. We work with each of our offices to provide a solid RCM solution. No two practices are alike and we pride ourselves on maintaining open communication between every office and their Fast Pay Health account manager to stay in sync. Contact us for a free practice analysis to see how we can help you.