AHA issues ICD-10 countdown checklist

With just over a month to go until the Oct. 1 ICD-10 deadline, the American Hospital Association (AHA) has released a checklist of key steps that hospitals should take to ensure a successful transition.

AHA’s ICD-10 “homestretch” checklist for hospital leaders covers three critical areas: checking internal systems, verifying external partner readiness and considering financial protections.

Internally, AHA recommends that hospital leadership evaluate their staffing and estimate whether coding productivity will drop and by how much. Some hospitals may need additional staff in the short term to manage the transition.

AHA advises hospitals to establish communication plans with outside organizations, such as collecting emergency contact information for Medicare contractors and commercial insurers in case of delayed claims. Hospitals also should know their major trading partners’ rules and process for submitting replacement claims if they identify a coding problem that needs to be corrected.

AHA recommends hospitals familiarize themselves with their trading partners' policies and processes regarding advance payments should they experience payment delays, as well as establish credit lines that can be used if processing delays adversely affect the normal revenue cycle. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services also has procedures for payment advances from Medicare in the event of financial difficulties due to a lag in Medicare billing and/or payments.

Access the AHA ICD-10 checklist.