Six ways to mitigate ICD-10 claim denials
Eventually deadline must be faced - even with a one-year reprieve. Many physicians whose practices were behind schedule in their plans to comply with the federally mandated transition to ICD-10 breathed a sigh of relief last April when Congress pushed back the deadline for one year to Oct. 1, 2015.
Nevertheless, physicians should not let the delay lull them into thinking they can relax their efforts regarding compliance. ICD-10 is structurally complex. The system provides greater specificity with more than five times the number of ICD-9 codes. Practices need to ensure that they're ready
when the deadline does arrive to avoid denials and the inevitable cash flow problems that would
ensue. This is particularly true for small and medium-sized practices without large reserves.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has estimated that claim denials will jump 100 percent to 200 percent in the early stages of ICD-10 implementation. But there are steps medical practices can take to mitigate the risk of denials and attendant cash flow issues.