CMS does mandate ICD-10 testing in 2014

Carl Natale
by Carl Natale

This isn't a reversal of policy but the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)  says that all Medicare contractors must implement front-end ICD-10 testing with trading partners in 2014.

The testing is scheduled for March 3-7.

CMS never said no testing is necessary, but that testing with MACs will do the trick. That is what is being planned here.

According to a CMS statement on the the ICD-10 testing in March, this is what to expect:

  • "Your MAC will host a registration site for the testing week, or provide an email address for the trading partners to provide registration information. The registration site or email address information will be available and publicized to trading partners at least four weeks prior to the testing week."
  • "During the testing week, EDI help desk support will be available, at a minimum, from    9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. local contractor time, with enough support to handle any increased call volume."
  • "Providers and suppliers participating during the testing week will receive electronic acknowledgement confirming that the submitted test claims were accepted or rejected."
  • "On or before March 18, 2014, your contractor will report the following to CMS:"
    • "Number of trading partners conducting testing during the testing week."
    • "Percent of trading partners that conducted testing during the testing week (versus number of trading partners supported) by contract."
    • "Percent of test claims accepted versus rejected. "
    • "Report of any significant issues found during testing."

And that's all folks

Given that CMS is setting the date more than three months away, that speaks to how much preparation will be needed. And it's doubtful that the MACs can turn around another testing date between then and Oct. 1. So this is probably it for Medicare testing opportunities.

And so far this doesn't mark any change in the lack of testing plans from CMS directly. We will see how the politics of healthcare reform changes that.