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The Healthcare Industry Transitions From ICD-9 to ICD-10

Updated on February 7, 2018

A major transition is affecting the healthcare industry, on October 2013 ICD-9 will transition to ICD-10. Just what is ICD-9? In short, it is the codes used to describe the condition or disease being treated. This is an uniform method so that the Insurance company, doctor and patients can understand what is being treated in the patient encounter. Anyone who bills a health insurance company should have an ICD-9 codebook in their office. ICD-10 is the l0th revision of the diagnostic coding system which is in use in many countries in the world, except the United States.

Why is the transition occurring?

Numbers in most categories in the ICD-9 code sets have been assigned diagnoses. Medical science keeps making new discoveries, and there are no numbers to assign these diagnoses. ICD-10 will expand the code sets.Therefore, the government set in motion for industry-wide implementation Oct. 2013, however, this date has been expended.

What is the difference between the ICD-9 and ICD-10?

ICD-10 is printed in a three-volume set compared with ICD-9's two-volume set. ICD-10 has alphanumeric categories rather than numeric categories. ICD-10 has almost twice as many categories as ICD-9. Some minor changes were made in the coding rules for mortality.

Needless to say, this change will indeed affect the healthcare industry. The overall Change will be good for the health industry, because of the addition of expanded codes, the change with the number of codes needed to describe a condition and better specificity in code assignment. While this is a new system for the US, it is already used in effectively in other countries, and it works.

The transition would be a very difficult change in the healthcare industry, if the healthcare industry was not prepared to implement it. But this is not the case, for years now the healthcare industry has been preparing for the change, they have taken the bull by the horns as it were, and have made the needed adjustments and worked out the kinks. Rest assure that the healthcare industry is ready for this major transition. Roll out the welcome mat for ICD-10!

Reference:; Art work-Artwithinreach By Lawrence Godfrey


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