• The PT’s 2015 ICD-10 Checklist  Image

    webinarFeb 24, 2015

    The PT’s 2015 ICD-10 Checklist

    The ICD-10 switch is upon us—October 1, 2015, to be exact—and you only have about seven months to finalize all of your clinic’s preparations. Feel your brow beading with stress sweat? Instead of fretting, tune in to this must-watch webinar. Hosts Heidi Jannenga and Mike Manheimer will outline everything you and your practice need to do to be ICD-10-ready before the clock runs out. In this session, you’ll learn how to: Assess current clinic diagnosis coding processes …

  • Beware of ICD-10 Shortcuts: The Case Against One-to-One Crosswalking Image

    articleFeb 24, 2015

    Beware of ICD-10 Shortcuts: The Case Against One-to-One Crosswalking

    ICD-10 is inherently more sophisticated and specific than ICD-9, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s more complicated. So, why are healthcare professionals pulling their hair out over the mandatory transition to these new codes? Because learning ICD-10 is like learning a new language. If we were going into this with a clean slate–like a newborn babe—perhaps it wouldn’t be so tough to learn the language. Unfortunately, though, the US healthcare industry has relied on ICD-9 codes for …

  • 50 Shades of ICD-10 Image

    articleFeb 19, 2015

    50 Shades of ICD-10

    While ICD-10 may not make you hot, it probably gets you pretty bothered. Finding an ICD-10 code that’s a perfect match for a particular ICD-9 code is like trying to find a shade of paint that’s the exact same color as your new gray throw pillows. You might assume you can simply tell your friendly hardware store associate you’d like a can of gray paint for your living room, and boom—all done. Easy peasy. But when you …

  • History of ICD-10 Image

    articleFeb 17, 2015

    History of ICD-10

    If you haven’t heard of ICD-10 by now, you’ve probably been living under a rock . Though CMS has talked about the impending implementation of ICD-10 like a boy crying “Wolf!, ” the days of false alarms are over—at least that’s what the experts are saying . That’s right: it’s finally happening, folks. And the mandatory transition to the new diagnosis code set will be here before we know it (even if it is 20 years late). …

  • What's the Deal with the New Modifiers? Image

    articleFeb 10, 2015

    What's the Deal with the New Modifiers?

    In addition to unleashing all the 2015 PQRS changes , the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) decided to throw us another curveball by introducing the following four HCPCS modifiers —called the X{EPSU} modifiers—to “define specific subsets” of the 59 modifier. XE Separate Encounter, A Service That Is Distinct Because It Occurred During A Separate Encounter XS Separate Structure, A Service That Is Distinct Because It Was Performed On A Separate Organ/Structure XP Separate Practitioner, A …

  • Have You Considered These 3 ICD-10 To-Dos? Image

    articleFeb 3, 2015

    Have You Considered These 3 ICD-10 To-Dos?

    “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” That’s how the age-old adage goes, but aside from it being a totally messed-up saying—why are we eating elephants?—it also falls totally flat in my book. When we talk about eating an elephant, it implies that we’re devouring something. In reality, though, with any significant or substantial endeavor, we’re actually trying to triumph. And I’m not sure if anyone would count gorging on a pachyderm as …

  • On a Scale of 1 to ICD-10, how Prepared are You? Image

    articleFeb 2, 2015

    On a Scale of 1 to ICD-10, how Prepared are You?

    Like yet another season of Survivor , ICD-10 is inevitable, and while the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) won’t drop you on a remote, hostile island when the ICD-10 switch happens, the new coding terrain may be just as unfamiliar, uncomfortable, and treacherous—unless you’re ready. Here’s how to win at ICD-10 (no shelter-building or fire-making required). Hit the Books Switching from a code set with roughly 13, 000 codes to one with about 68, 000 …

  • New Year’s Resolution: Compliance Plans Image

    articleJan 27, 2015

    New Year’s Resolution: Compliance Plans

    Ah, the new year—a perfect time for reflection: What did we do well? What could we do better? What do we need to change? These questions lead us to our resolutions. At the heart of any New Year’s resolution is a person’s strong desire to protect where he or she is in life. People work hard to achieve what they have, and they don’t want to lose that. In a very real sense, compliance plans speak to …

  • PQRS 2015 Measures: What’s Changed? Image

    articleDec 23, 2014

    PQRS 2015 Measures: What’s Changed?

    Medicare released the 2015 specifications for individual PQRS measures. Not much has changed compared to last year; however, there are a few changes—the most noteworthy being the elimination of the wound care measure (245). I’ve detailed the rest of the changes below. Measure 126: Diabetes Mellitus: Diabetic Foot and Ankle Care, Peripheral Neuropathy - Neurological Evaluation In addition to updating denominator criteria, the numerator definition (which now includes a lower extremity neurological exam), and the reporting timeframes …

  • GPRO 2015: Is it Worth it? Image

    articleNov 19, 2014

    GPRO 2015: Is it Worth it?

    Last week, we covered the registry-and claims-based reporting methods for PQRS. In this post, I’ll discuss the complexities associated with reporting PQRS using the Group Practice Reporting Option (GPRO). In past years, GPRO seemed to be the most practical option for practices with more than two eligible professionals. This year, however, Medicare added more stipulations to the GPRO program—and in some cases, those add-ons might make the whole thing more trouble than it’s worth. The Basics of …

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