The World Health Organization and government have collaborated now for several years to expand the numeric codes (ICD-9-CM) to the new ICD-10 coding system. Though it was a very complex process, the transition is now mandated to 2015.
The changes are huge and most healthcare providers are literally stymied by what to do about the anticipated changes. Med-Certification has developed a complete program to learn the new coding system for both seasoned coders and those in the regular ICD-9 training programs. Med-Certification, a leader in online medical career training since 1994 is once more on the cutting edge of training programs with the new ICD-10-Training. It is available as a complete ICD-9 AND 10 coding training program or an ICD-10 standalone for experienced coders.
The new ICD-10 code system has many more codes to deal with. It currently contains 69,099 diagnostic codes compared with 14,315 codes in ICD-9. That number increases the number of codes FIVE TIMES
- The expertise involved in using all of the additional codes will require far more documentation than the older version
- The labor intensity in the coding process will be far more complicated and will create a significant coder shortage
- The ICD-9 codes will continue to be used so coders will need to know how to use both sets of codes. In fact they may use dual coding systems for many years. (Billing and coding with both ICD-10-CM and ICD-9-CM for workers compensation and auto claims do not fall under HIPAA mandates so may not feel the push to transition to ICD-10. For this reason proficiency in ICD-9-CM remains extremely important.)
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a code set freeze, which will allow a stable learning environment effective with the 2012 codes. With the training foundation provided by ICD-10-Training, those who wish to learn the new coding system will have an excellent base to expand into the ability to fully understand and employ the new coding conventions.
Major differences between ICD-9 and ICD-10
- Higher level of specificity. Codes go up to seven characters in length.
- Expanded injury codes, which group codes by site of injury in ICD-10-CM instead of type of injury in ICD-9-CM.
- Creation of diagnosis/symptom combination codes, which may actually allow for reporting of fewer codes in ICD-10-CM.
- Alphanumeric structure using all digits and characters except the letter U. This allows for flexibility and has the space needed to add new codes as needed.
- In ICD-10-CM location, e.g., if the condition affects the left side, right side or if it is bilateral.
- Seventh character extensions: The seventh character extender must always be the seventh character. Examples of seventh character extenders are A for active treatment; D for subsequent treatment; and S for sequela.
- “Dummy” place holders. Because of the need for the seventh digit character extender in certain situations, the code selection may only go up to character four or five meaning we will have to use the letter “x” to fill in up to the seventh character when needed.
The successful training candidates will receive a Certification for ICD-10 Coding Training.
Other related medical and legal training is also available online, including:
- Medical Billing
- Medical Coding
- Medical Office Specialist/Administration
- Medical Transcription
- Medical Scribe
- Medical Records Specialist
- Medication Aide
- Legal Transcription
- Paralegal Training
Certification is becoming increasingly important to career planning. Certifications and Continuing Education are available as well for all of the training classes noted.