ICD-10. It’s closer than it seems.
Assessing Your Vendors
Vendors are key partners who can help you prepare for ICD-10. When considering how your vendor can assist you in your transition to ICD-10, you should first assess your vendor’s capabilities:
- Do your current vendor contracts cover your practice’s ICD-10-related needs?
- What is the vendor’s timeline for the ICD-10 transition?
- Will your vendor install products well before the October 1, 2014, deadline, so you can begin testing them in 2013?
- Has your vendor scheduled with you to test your system with your trading partners?
- Will all your vendor’s current products and applications be updated for ICD-10?
- Has your vendor scheduled training for your staff on the ICD-10 system updates?
- Do products give you the ability to search for codes by the ICD-10 alphabetic and tabular indexes? By clinical concept?
- Will the product allow for coding in both ICD-9 and ICD-10 to accommodate transactions with dates of service before October 1, 2014, and transactions with dates of service after October 1, 2014?
Communication During Your Transition
After assessing your vendor’s capabilities, continue to communicate with them throughout the ICD-10 transition:
- Planning. Include your vendor in planning the transition. Communicate your needs and goals to your vendor and ask for your vendor to provide assurance in writing that products and testing plans will fulfill your requirements. Ask your vendor to share some strategies that other clients have used successfully.
- Implementation and internal testing. Work with your vendors to update and test clinical, financial, actuarial, and reporting processes. Vendors should offer technical support and guidance during and after installation of new software.
- Testing with payers. Find out how your vendor will provide support as you begin testing ICD-10 transactions with payers and other business trading partners. Allow up to a year in advance of the October 1, 2014, ICD-10 deadline for testing with trading partners.
- Resolving testing issues. Determine what role your vendor will play in resolving any testing failures.
For more information on working with vendors and other external business partners, consult the ICD-10 checklists, timelines, and implementation guides available on the CMS website.
Keep Up to Date on ICD-10
Visit the CMS ICD-10 website for the latest news and resources to help you prepare for the October 1, 2014, deadline.