When it comes to ICD-10, keep calm and carry on

ICD-10 is just another taxonomy.

ICD-10 is just another taxonomy.

The deadline for ICD-10 conversion is less than 200 days away, and given its convergence with meaningful use stage 2, many health care practitioners are understandably apprehensive. Change, no matter how beneficial, is often met with uncertainty and fear. However, while the onset of ICD-10 will inevitably spur a few growing pains, it has ultimately been developed to improve patient care and streamline the administrative process in practices across the country. Plus, as one news outlet recently noted, there is nothing to be gained by falling victim to fear-mongering or hysteria.

Michael Daconta of InCadence Strategic Solutions penned a piece for GCN on the misconceptions that have fueled widespread fears about ICD-10. ICD-10, Daconta, is not a new species. It is simply a taxonomy that falls in line with past iterations while providing greater detail.

"ICD [...]is a taxonomy for diseases. As a classification scheme it is no different than any other hierarchical or drill-down scheme where data items or nodes flow from parent to child (and where the child is more specialized than its parent)," Daconta writes.

Though ICD-10 will consist of considerably more codes, Daconta explains that more options do not necessarily equate to more difficulty. Some critics have singled out relatively obscure codes — such as those that refer expressly to dolphin-related accidents — to indicate that the additions are ultimately excessive and even comical. However, any medical practitioner can attest that even rare circumstances must be recorded accurately to ensure proper care for every patient. Even codes that aren't frequently used have value if they help just one physician make an educated diagnosis.

Though ICD-10 may not be quite the bogeyman that some critics suggest, chiropractors must still be prepared for the switch. Investing in chiropractic management software that is equipped for ICD-10 can minimize workflow disruption while enabling you to reap the benefits of chiropractic EHR.

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