How medical coders can adjust to the ICD-10 delay

Carl Natale
by Carl Natale

For the most part, healthcare organizations appreciate an extra year to work on the ICD-10 transition.

It gives the better prepared ones a chance to make sure they are doing everything correctly and test properly.

The procrastinators get some breathing room.

But Kevin McDermott read through the comments on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) proposed deadline delay found medical coders don't appreciate it. They're trying to time their training to be just right. Too early and they stand a chance of forgetting how to navigate the ICD-10 code set.

[See also: Getting your ICD-10 training timed just right]

In search of a silver lining, McDermott talked to Linda Gates-Striby, president of Gates Physician Services in Indianapolis. She sees a chance to improve more than coding knowledge:

"Look into project management training to increase your worth to your practice. Just because ICD-10 may be delayed doesn’t mean efforts by coders to learn the new code set is wasted."

Remember, this is more of a project management challenge than a coding challenge. And this offers plenty of opportunity for medical coders.