Last week saw major news hit the chiropractic EHR world when the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it was delaying the start date for meaningful use Stage 2 from October 1, 2014 to 2016. This decision had the domino effect of pushing back Stage 3 as well, which will now begin in 2017. Health care industry professionals had long worried about the "perfect storm" that October 1 could have created, hosting both the launch of Stage 2 and the coding language switchover from ICD-9 to ICD-10 on the same day. Now that this scenario is off the table, though, practices hoping to get a reprieve for the ICD-10 deadline are out of luck, as that is still being planned for an October 1 start and unlikely to change.
With a little less than 10 months to go until ICD-10 goes into effect, here are a few measures recommended by EHR Intelligence that practices should adopt before the end of the year, to ensure their chiropractic EMR will be ready for ICD-10 compliance in 2014:
Finalize testing schedule
Make sure you've identified which of your systems already use ICD-9 codes and how to translate past data for ICD-10 use by the end of the year. This will put you on track for a stress-free transition next year.
Set a timeline for system upgrades
To ensure that ICD-10 doesn't create any harmful disruptions in your work load, make sure you've outlined which system upgrades you'll need to make. Whether or not you need new hardware, how a change in chiropractic EHR software will affect your workflow, how you can balance all of these changes with the rest of your business in a calm and non-chaotic manner, and so on. Creating a game plan now will ensure smooth sailing once October 1 rolls around.