After several delays, much debate and worry from providers across the nation, ICD-10 finally seems to have the green light, at least based on the interpretation from 2 senators of the recently released report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO). Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) feel that the conversion will meet the October 1, 2015 deadline. The report provided an analysis of CMS activities centered around the ICD-10 transition and reported that CMS has finished its internal testing plan for fee-for-service reimbursements and confirms their readiness to perform “critical” transitional activities. GAO gave a draft of the report to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services which agreed with the findings.
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is reporting no issues with current testing results and will be continuing testing up to the time of the conversion and the GAO stated that “Coalition members are working together and with CMS to ensure a smooth and successful transition for all health care stakeholders. The U.S. is ready to move forward with ICD-10 with no further delays.” The GAO has also stated that CMS is helping prepare stakeholders for the transition with training sessions, teleconferences, educational materials, and monitoring the readiness of providers and payers.
The report also states that not all state Medicaid agencies have begun acknowledgement testing and “it is not known what, if any, changes might be necessary based upon [Medicare’s] ongoing external testing activities.” The GAO did highlight misgivings from stakeholders in the report and some of the responses from CMS include the agency scheduling three separate weeks of end-to-end testing with 2,550 covered entities, promoting awareness of its educational materials, adding in-person training in additional states, offering more video trainings, and planning to develop additional specialty-specific materials. CMS will also be directing a mail campaign to small practices in Arizona, Maryland, Ohio and Texas, and plans to expand the pilot to rural communities.
With Medisoft, your ICD-10 transition can be smooth. To beat the last-minute rush and prevent any interruption to your practice’s cash flow, please contact Microwize Technology at 800-955-0321 for information on Medisoft practice management software.