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KPMG survey results support idea that ICD-10 was a Y2K event

After all the anticipation – and after some experts predicted that ICD-10 would be a disaster with little value — it seems ICD-10 has turned out to be a Y2K-type of event so far, in which expected widespread mishaps proved unfounded. A recent KPMG survey supports that stance.

KMPG – an audit, tax and advisory firm — is not alone in its findings. Directors at the Medical Group Management Association and American Health Information Management Association both told SearchHealthIT that many of their clients have also reported a smooth transition to ICD-10 so far.

“ICD-10 is the healthcare industry’s equivalent to the Y2K changeover in scope and has a profound influence on not only the billing and reimbursement, but the ability to track quality of the delivery of healthcare,” Todd Ellis, managing director at KPMG, said in a press release. “This is an ongoing process, however, and this transition affects not just technology, but finance, employee training, clinical information and other functions in healthcare.”

Of the 298 respondents in the KPMG survey, only 11% declared their transition to ICD-10 a failure while 51.4% said they had a few technical issues but overall their transition was a success. In addition, 28.3% said the transition was smooth so far.

“While there seems to be a fairly smooth transition to ICD-10, the 11% of organizations that are struggling need to be helped,” Ellis said. “The communities these organizations serve depend upon their healthcare providers to meet their medical needs, and we need to help them through these challenges. ICD-10’s implementation was a lengthy process, and unfortunately they will address these issues or face greater competitive disadvantages in measuring quality and reduced cash flow.”

In fact, 41.9% of the respondents said they foresaw all of the following as huge challenges in dealing with ICD-10 in the future:

  • Clinical documentation improvement and continuous physician education
  • Increase in denials and rejected claims
  • Reduced revenue due to coding delays or coding errors
  • System testing and information technology fixes

Although it seems the transition to ICD-10 was largely a success, it is clear that more work needs to be done in order to maintain that success.