• Practices report slow transition to ICD-10

    With less than a year and a half until medical practices must begin using ICD-10, many are far behind in their preparations.

    In a new report released Thursday, the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) said 55.4 percent of the more than 1,200 practices surveyed indicated that they had yet to start implementing ICD-10, which goes into effect Oct. 1, 2014.

    Less than 5 percent reported that they had either completed implementation or had made significant progress.

    Many respondents blamed their tardiness on a lack of action by their claims clearinghouses, electronic health record (EHR) vendors, and their practice management system vendors. For instance, while more than 83 percent of practices said their practice management systems will need to be upgraded or replaced to work with ICD-10, 52.5 percent said they haven't heard from their vendor when that upgrade or replacement will be available.

    Also, at least 42 percent said their practice will have to pay for the work at an average cost of $10,190 per full-time equivalent (FTE) physician.

    On the EHR side, 71 percent of respondents said they'll need an upgrade or replacement, but 49.7 percent haven't heard from their vendors. The average cost for doing the work is expected to be $9,979 per FTE.

    Despite the lack of plans, less than 14 percent of practices said they have no confidence that their practice management and EHR vendors would be ready by Oct. 1, 2014.

    The no-confidence level went up slightly to almost 18 percent for claims clearinghouse partners but surged to more than 38 percent for major health plans.

    The more than 1,200 practices surveyed included more than 55,000 physicians.

    Posted on Jun 13, 2013 by David Twiddy

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