HHS finalizes ICD-10 delay

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Letter: Assisted living group pushes for industry involvement to prevent 'pension poaching'
Letter: Assisted living group pushes for industry involvement to prevent 'pension poaching'

Healthcare providers will have an extra year to become compliant with ICD-10 coding standards and will be issued standardized identification codes, according to a final rule issued by Department of Health and Human Services on Friday.

HHS finalized a one-year delay on the deadline by which providers must become compliant with the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Edition (ICD-10) diagnosis and procedure codes. Providers now have until Oct. 1, 2014 to implement the new system. Hospitals, nursing homes and other providers use the ICD-9 to code diagnoses and procedures. The current system, the ICD-9, has 13,000 codes, while the ICD-10 will have 68,000.

Another part of the final rule pertains to an “administrative simplification regulation” that establishes a health plan identifier (HPID). Authorized by the Affordable Care Act, HPIDs will help simplify the existing process for determining a patient's eligibility for care and coverage, according to HHS.

Commercial and government health plans are expected to spend $650 million to $1.3 billion obtaining HPIDs, the department said. However, there is expected to be $1.3 to 6 billion in expected savings over the next 10 years to providers and health plans.

Click here to read the final rule, which will be published in the Federal Register on Sept. 5.

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