CMS Mum on ICD-10 Postponement

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Even though President Barack Obama signed into law postponement of ICD-10 implementation to Oct. 1, 2015, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has yet to take official action.

Nearly three weeks after Congress passed the bill and the president signed it CMS has so far only made a small change to its official website on ICD-10, acknowledging the new deadline by merely quoting the text of the bill.

“With enactment of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, CMS is examining the implications of the ICD-10 provision and will provide guidance to providers and stakeholders soon,” the website states.  ”This provision in the statute reads as follows:  ’The Secretary of Health and Human Services may not, prior to October 1, 2015, adopt ICD-10 code sets as the standard for codes sets under section 1173 (c) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320d-2 (c)) and section 162.1002 of title 45, Code of Federal Regulations.’”

The rest of the website remains unchanged, and continues to list the date for migration to ICD-10 as Oct. 1, 2014. In fact, right below the section quoting the new law, the website says:

About ICD-10

On October 1, 2014, the ICD-9 code sets used to report medical diagnoses and inpatient procedures will be replaced by ICD-10 code sets.

CMS, which had a disastrous launch of Healthcare.gov, apparently has yet to learn its lesson and increase transparency into its large-scale technology projects, especially those affecting large stakeholder groups such as ICD-10.

The agency conducted limited ICD-10 testing of clearinghouses and other similar partners back in March but has yet to release any results of those tests. To date the only information about them has been press releases by some of the vendors involved in the tests.

CMS has remained mum on the status of end-to-end ICD-10 testing slated for July. In mid March the agency sought volunteers for the testing program and promised to announce the names of those selected this Thursday. As yet there has been no word from CMS as to whether the delay in ICD-10 has affected the timetable of the end-to-end test.

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Posted in Billing and Coding, Denials Management, Medical Receivables, Patient Experience, Patient Financial Services .

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