How to start ICD-10 training for medical practices

Carl Natale
by Carl Natale

Training begins ASAP. There won't be time to forget ICD-10 codes.

Earlier this week I highlighted a self-training timeline. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) adds some modules to help learn ICD-10-CM/PCS codes on the Road to 10 site.

Review common codes

Not every physician needs every diagnosis — especially in specialty medical practices. Focus on the diagnosis codes you will most likely need. For example, the Road to 10 site suggests the following diagnoses for family practices:

  • Abdominal Pain (ICD-9-CM 789.00 to 789.09 range)
  • Acute Respiratory Infections (ICD-9-CM 462, 465.9, 466.0)
  • Back and Neck Pain (Selected) (ICD-9-CM 723.1, 724.1, 724.2, 724.5)
  • Chest Pain (ICD-9-CM 786.50 to 786.59 range)
  • Diabetes Mellitus w/o Complications Type 2 (ICD-9-CM 250.00)
  • General Medical Examination (ICD-9-CM V70.0)
  • Headache (ICD-9-CM 784.0)
  • Hypertension (ICD-9-CM 401.9)
  • Pain in Joint (ICD-9-CM 719.40 to 719.49 range)
  • Pain in Limb (ICD-9-CM 729.5)
  • Other Forms Of Heart Disease (ICD-9-CM 427.31)
  • Urinary Tract Infection, Cystitis (ICD-9-CM 595.0 to 595.4 range, 595.81, 595.82, 595.89, 595.9, 599.0)

Of course your mileage may vary. It's worth finding the most common diagnoses and the ones that are worth the most money to the medical practice. Learn those ICD-10 codes and practice them.

 Plan training and education initiatives.

  • Assess needed training and education

    • Subjects
      • ICD-10 coding
      • Anatomy
      • Physiology
      • Pharmacology
      • Medical terminology
      • Procedures
    • Pick best training options
      • Formal classroom sessions
      • In-house sessions
      • Remote, online sessions
    • Identify which staff members will need what training. ICD-10 code training will be taught to:
      • Medical coders: In addition to learning theICD-10-CM/PCS code set, they will need anatomy and physiology refreshers. They can become in-house trainers who can help train co-workers
      • Non-coding staff members:  They may need to know about requirements and structure of ICD-10 code sets
      • Coding champion: Coding champion: Recruit a staff member who can educate and create awareness among the non-coding staff. They can also help others understand what vendors are selling
    • Schedule training
      • Arrange sessions for staff
      • Spread training so coding shifts covered
      • Plan training slots for yet-to-be hired personnel
    • Investigate training vendors

 Training Resources

The Road to 10 has a comprehensive collection of links to resources that can help healthcare providers learn more about the ICD-10 transition.