Is contingency planning part of your ICD-10 transition?

Carl Natale
by Carl Natale

I think we can count on something going wrong when it comes to ICD-10 implementation. Not that you're going to mess it up. But considering that a lot of people need to get a lot of things right, perfection won't be an option.

The worst that can happen is that you won't be able to submit medical claims with ICD-10 codes on Oct. 1, 2014. At that point, contingency planning won't be anything fancy. Your medical practice will need cash reserves. "If you are not ready or if your partners are not ready by Oct. 1, 2014, will you be prepared, for example, to not get reimbursed on claims for several weeks if not months?"  wrote  Evan J. Albright at Inside Patience Finance.

The other contingency is reduced productivity. That would mean the medical coding process would slow down — thus slowing down payments. Cash reserves or a line of credit could work here but hiring more medical coders could speed the workflow.

Even that will require having more money — either through savings or credit — on hand.

No matter what, a contingency plan will boil down to having more money on hand.