ICD-10 continues to be a hot topic in the eyecare and overall medical industry as we get closer to the October 1st implementation date. While change can be scary, avoiding the topic is only going to cost your practice in the long run. Preparation for the new codes should have already started in your office; if you haven’t started prepping your team for the switch, don’t delay any longer! Today we want to share with you a few small prep tips that will get your practice ready for a smooth transition.
Claims Management: Keeping ICD-10 from Costing Your Practice
Utilize Your Resources
There are plenty of resources available to your
practice, and a lot of them won’t cost you a dime! CMS has a ton of resources on their site from implementation plans, to training videos, and more. It’s great to start your ICD-10 research straight from the source.
On top of the CMS, your practice management vendor likely has resources available regarding ICD-10 that are specific to the system you are using. Contact your vendor if you haven’t already to see how they can offer help. Finally, if you are looking for even more preparation, there are plenty of codebooks available for purchase. While these resources aren’t free, the small upfront cost can help save your practice money going forward.
Make a Cheat Sheet
You already know that as an eyecare specialist, you won’t be using every single ICD-10 code in the book; and from the subset of eyecare codes that will be relevant to your practice, you’ll be using some more often than others. Take a look at the most frequent ICD-9 codes you currently use in your practice and then see what they look like in ICD-10. Create a cheat sheet of the ICD-10 codes you think your practice will have to use most often, and keep it on hand in the office. This will help your staff from having to look through a large range of codes to find the ones they need, and it is a great way to start learning the new code set.
Prepare Your Workflow
Like any change in your practice, the switch to ICD-10 is going to have an effect on your workflow. Be prepared for things to slow down during the initial switch and for a short time after the switch. You might consider scheduling less patients or more time in between patients to help give your practice some time to get used to the new codes. Make sure that your staff is prepared to step up and help out with different roles beyond their typical daily tasks to help out during the transition. This is when having employees that are cross trained comes in handy!
Get Your System Ready
Your practice management and EHR systems need to be just as prepared as the rest of your practice. Talk to your vendor to see what updates you might need to manually make, or if your system is already prepared for the switch. Remember that with ICD-10 you will have to use the 5010 claim format, and your claim form needs to be switched over to 02/12. It doesn't matter how prepared you and your staff are, if your system isn't ready ahead of time, you'll cost your practice an unnecessary headache.
The more prepared you are for the ICD-10 switch, the easier it will be on your practice. What has your office done to get ready for ICD-10?
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