Coding association predicts a smooth transition to ICD-10

February 2, 2015

The November round of ICD-10 testing conducted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has been deemed a success through a poll conducted by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).

The November round of ICD-10 testing conducted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has been deemed a success through a poll conducted by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).

Eighty-four percent of AAPC members polled say they were 84% satisfied with the testing and 90% reported no payment shifts in the claims their test claims.

“Testing results so far have been not only positive, but suggest that misgivings about the ICD-10 implementation have been exaggerated,” says AAPC.

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Of the more than 2,000 poll participants, AAPC says 72% had no claims denied during the test period, and 16% experienced a rejection rate of less than 10%. Roughly a third of respondents included testing with either Medicare or Medicaid, while the others tested with private payers.

The November test involved 13,700 claims from more than 500 providers, and an average of 76% of the test claims were accepted by CMS.

“Acceptance rates improved throughout the week; by Friday the acceptance rate for test claims was 87%,” AAPC states. “The results are more impressive when you consider that many testers ‘intentionally included errors in their claims to make sure that the claim would be rejected.’ The most common errors are easily corrected and had nothing to do with ICD-10.”

Additional testing is slated for April 27 through May 1 and July 20-24, 2015. The new coding system will take effect in October 2015.

The poll also included some data on the costs of ICD-10 implementation and revealed that 72% of respondents say they spent less than $5,000 per provider, and only 2% claims to have spent more than $10,000 per provider on implementation. AAPC says these costs are in line with the organization’s earlier estimates of a cost of $750 to $3,500 per provider. Poll participants also noted that implementation “has not been as hard as they thought it would be” and that the new coding has streamlined documentation and processes within their practices.

NEXT STORY: Are ICD-10 conversion costs overblown?