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As you get ready for ICD-10, plan for "what if" scenarios

With ICD-10 fast approaching, some healthcare providers won’t be prepared in time. In order to ensure that you aren’t one of them, CIOs need to make sure they’re ready for the less obvious — yet disruptive — effects of ICD-10.

A good way for CIOs to tackle this goal is to plan for the “what if” scenarios, technology researcher firm Gartner said in a report.

CIOs should create contingency plans that address unanticipated consequences that could happen during and after the transition to ICD-10. One approach is to identify areas of vulnerability within the organization but outside of IT. Gartner said that it’s also important to take the effects on other areas of IT into consideration if resources are focused solely on the ICD-10 implementation.

Gartner also suggests preparing for “what if” scenarios by allocating resources and staff to focus on claims processing and provider and member support. And don’t forget to make sure that there is staff dedicated to recovering overpayments.

CIOs will also need to prepare for those providers who are not ready when ICD-10 rolls around. This will likely cause problems in at least the early months of the transition, and Gartner recommends that CIOs work closely with vendors and providers in advance and make sure to agree contractually on how to reconcile process and payment delays. CIOs should also continue to refine claims management and payment after ICD-10 debuts by using analytical tools.

And in case you’re feeling overwhelmed by the approaching Oct. 1 date and the flood of information, a good laugh might help relieve the stress. So take a moment to look at this humorous art inspired by the “most important” ICD-10 codes.

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