Develop an ICD-10 Training Plan for Your Practice

April 14, 2014

Here are four assessment areas your practice can use to develop training for the ICD-10 medical coding system transition.

Ideally, ICD-10 training for the providers and staff in your practice is well underway. Even though ICD-10 won’t become a reality until October 2015 at the earliest, now is the time to assess the training done so far, identify what yet needs to be done, explore all training options, and develop a training plan so providers and staff in your practice are ready for ICD-10.

To assess training needs for your medical practice:

• Determine who needs education:

     • Poll the physicians and staff individually regarding the extent of their use of ICD and CPT coding to determine who assigns, interprets, and/or reports coded data.

• Determine what type and level of education they need:

     •At the very least, all providers and staff should receive an overview of ICD-10 details.

     • Providers will need training focused on their practice or specialty. In addition, physicians should be working with the clinical documentation improvement (CDI) programs in their affiliated hospitals to identify areas where their documentation can be improved to better support ICD-10 code assignment.

     • Office referral and registration staff may need comprehensive ICD-10-CM training for assigning and reporting diagnostic codes.

• Determine the most appropriate and cost-effective method of providing ICD-10 education to the different categories of individuals. There are many different delivery options:

     • Traditional face-to-face classroom teaching

     • Audio conferences

     • Self-directed learning programs

     • Web-based instruction (self-directed or instructor-led)

• Determine whether education will be provided through internal or external mechanisms, or a combination of both. Many training options are available for all skill levels. Be sure to investigate these options for both core and supplemental ICD-10 training:

     • Utilize public webinars and sites (CMS, American Hospital Association, and American Health Information Management Association) for current information, much of which is free.

     • Online vendor training systems offer targeted training and flexibility in scheduling.

     • A search using "Online ICD-10 training" or "ICD-10 training for ambulatory care" will provide a lengthy list of vendors who provide ICD-10 training in various delivery modes.

     • AHIMA’s component state health information management associations offer local educational programs (search on your state name and then "health information management association").

     • Contact hospitals at which you have admitting privileges to take advantages of the training programs they are offering in terms of ICD-10 and CDI.

Don't delay: A successful training program will result in a smooth transition to ICD-10 and an efficiently-running practice. For additional information on developing an ICD-10 training plan, visit AHIMA's ICD-10 webpage.

Barb Glondys, RHIA, is director of HIM Practice Excellence at AHIMA. E-mail her here.

©2014 American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). Reprinted by permission.