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Coalition for ICD-10 Briefs Congress on ICD-10 Transition

Washington, D.C. (February 10, 2015)—“We need it. We’re ready” was the central message communicated by speakers at a February 10th Capitol Hill briefing on ICD-10. Hosted by the Coalition for ICD-10, the briefing was an opportunity for congressional members and staff to hear from physicians and other experts about ICD-10 implementation progress and why the October 1, 2015 transition is needed and supported by the majority of the healthcare community.

“Nemours Children’s Health System believes implementing ICD-10 in 2015 is critically important and we appreciate the opportunity to share our story with policymakers and other interested parties,” said David W. West, M.D., medical director, Health Informatics & Business Partners, Nemours Children’s Health System, and a panelist at today’s briefing. “ICD-10 affords us the opportunity to make advancements in public health surveillance, clinical research and quality measurement that can have positive impacts on patient care.”

In addition to Dr. West, briefing speakers included Edward Burke, MD and Phillip Beyer, DO, Beyer Medical Group, Fredericktown, MO; Karen Blanchette, MBA, association director of the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management (PAHCOM); and George Vancore, senior manager, systems integrator and business architect, Delivery Systems Mandates and Compliance for Florida Blue. Joel White, chief executive officer of the Health IT Now Coalition moderated the panel. Presentation slides and prepared remarks provided by speakers at today’s briefing are available on the Coalition for ICD-10 website.

In commenting on the briefing, Lynne Thomas Gordon, MBA, RHIA, CAE, FACHE, FAHIMA, chief executive officer of the American Health Information Management Association, said: “Today’s hearing was an important opportunity for key stakeholders – small rural doctors and providers, hospitals, physician office management professionals and payers – to cut through the myths and misinformation and prove conclusively that the healthcare community will be ready for ICD-10 on October 1.”

Dr. Burke of Beyer Medical Group, a small physician practice that serves a rural population of about 4,000, noted in his briefing remarks that the U.S. lags other countries in adopting ICD-10: “Even in our small community it is not uncommon for patients to be traveling out of the country. To speak the same healthcare language is imperative. As a nation we are behind. As an industry we are behind. As healthcare providers we can do better. We must be open to change and to the possibility that a different way can work. ICD‐10 is truly better than what we currently have.”

Several of today’s speakers, as well as other members of the Coalition for ICD-10, will be testifying at a hearing sponsored by the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health on “Examining ICD-10 Implementation,” Feb. 11, 10:15am ET, in room 2322 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

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