New 2015 ICD-10 Implementation Date Confirmed in Final Rule

(August 4, 2014)

On July 31, 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a final rule confirming the new ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision) implementation date of October 1, 2015, after the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 delayed the planned October 1, 2014, transition. The final rule also requires the health care industry to continue using ICD-9 (9th Revision) through September 30, 2015.

HHS waived the normal rulemaking requirements—which include a notice of proposed rulemaking and comment period—in order to alleviate uncertainty regarding next steps for implementation. In explaining its decision to move forward with the October 1, 2015, date, HHS stated that "A delay of longer than 1 year would slow or stop progress towards ICD-10 implementation, delay the efficiencies that can be achieved through ICD-10 implementation, and create wasteful spending."

ASHA will continue to monitor progress towards implementation and will provide updates as HHS and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) move forward.

Background

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires ICD-10 to be used for health services billing and recordkeeping. However, on April 1, 2014, President Obama signed into law the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, which included a provision that delayed the October 1, 2014, implementation of ICD-10. This is not the first time that implementation of ICD-10 has been delayed due to congressional action.

Once implemented, ICD-10-CM (Clinical Modification) will replace ICD-9-CM (9th Revision, Clinical Modification) as the official system of assigning codes to diagnoses and procedures in the United States. The ICD-9-CM is 30 years old, has outdated and obsolete terminology, and produces limited data. ICD-10-CM will allow for more codes and greater specificity and better data tracking of incidence and prevalence of disease.

Resources

ASHA had developed extensive resources to assist audiologists and speech-language pathologists with the transition to ICD-10, including an ICD-9 to ICD-10 mapping tool and discipline-specific ICD-10-CM code lists.

For questions regarding the transition, please contact reimbursement@asha.org.


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