HHS Delays ICD-10 Implementation Requirements

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On August 4, 2014, the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a final rule delaying the compliance date for health care providers, health plans, and health care clearinghouses to transition to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD-10) until October 1, 2015.  Prior to the enactment of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (PAMA), the health care industry was preparing to transition to ICD-10 by October 1, 2014.  However, PAMA established that the HHS Secretary may not adopt ICD-10 prior to October 1, 2015. Therefore, the final rule issued earlier this week implements this delay. According to a press release issued by HHS, “[t]his deadline allows providers, insurance companies and others in the health care industry time to ramp up their operations to ensure their systems and business processes are ready to go….” The ICD-10 codes are used to classify diagnoses and procedures on claims submitted to Medicare and private insurance payers.

The final rule also requires the continued use of the International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision (ICD-9) through September 30, 2015.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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