ICD-10 Transition: Problems you need to look for

Carl Natale
by Carl Natale

When you're planning the ICD-10 transition for your healthcare organization, you need to identify the problems that could prevent ICD-10 compliance.

HurdlesSteve Sisko does a good job with his list of 12 risks in an ICD-10 project:

  • Providers not ready
  • Payers not ready
  • Neutrality
  • Configuration (payer systems)
  • Trading partner Readiness
  • Inter-dependencies with other systems and procedures
  • Missed areas
  • Testing
  • Payments
  • Vendor readiness
  • Resource availability
  • Impacts from other projects

A slightly different view can be seen in this list of ICD-10 challenges from Kforce:

  • Lack of program management
  • Poor communications
  • Physician resistance
  • Hospital system partnerships

Take a look at both lists and the challenges boil down to two elements:

Project management

How are your project management skills?

Someone is going to need to:

  • Schedule meetings
  • Create teams
  • Recruit champions
  • Plan education and training sessions
  • Create impact assessments
  • Communicate with vendors and consultants
  • Perhaps hire said consultants

This is going to require strong project management skills.

Maybe you don't need to start learning ICD-10 coding but you can pick up some new skills that can help you guide your practice through a smoother ICD-10 transition. Here are some resources that can help you manage projects better:

While we're at it, you need to coordinate your ICD-10 project with other initiatives.

[See also: Herding Nerds: 5 project management tips for ICD-10 implementation]


It's about keeping everyone updated within the organization and learning how far along your external partners are.

[See also: CMS has advice on sharing ICD-10 transition information]

Speaking of external partners, hospital system partners are just as external as payers and vendors. They have their own cultures, procedures, systems and missions. Sharing the same logo doesn't mean you're on the same page. Take as much care communicating with them as you do with anyone outside your organization.