The move to ICD-10 is one the biggest changes to hit the US healthcare system. Hospitals that carefully prepare for the change by planning six months to a year in advance; implementing solutions that will simplify coding, enable machine-readable documentation and facilitate data collection; and establishing training programs that include those systems will not only experience a smoother transition but also see a greater return on their investment.

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) predicts the ICD-10 transition could cost hospitals as much as $20 million each. The main reason for the high cost is many IT systems will need to be upgraded for the conversion.

With the changeover less than a year away, many hospitals have solid plans in place for the rollout, including training and testing. But they should also consider the effects of new IT systems, writes Daphnee Fuentevilla, RHIA, solutions manager, coding and CDI solutions for Streamline Health in a recent post on the ICD10 Watch blog.

Having the right solutions at hand will ensure a smooth transition and help staff to work more quickly and accurately. Hospitals looking to offset productivity losses during the changeover should look for integrated, technology solutions that support cross-departmental collaboration. Equally important, these technology solutions must be incorporated into hospital training programs from the beginning, not part way through the process.

To learn more, read the full text of Daphnee’s article on the ICD10 Watch blog.

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