Executive Summary

The long-delayed transition to the International Classification of Diseases, Clinical Modification administrative codes (ICD-10-CM) is set to take place in October, presenting a host of challenges for EPs. A new analysis suggests roughly a quarter of the clinical encounters that take place in the ED will involve complexity in the transition to the new system. Further, experts anticipate workflow challenges as well as new considerations when making planning decisions and reporting to public health departments.

• The number of codes available to providers will jump from 14,000 to 80,000 with the transition to the new coding system.

• Investigators found that that 23% of the visits, or 27% of the codes, emergency medicine physicians use are complex.

• The new coding system requires much more specificity, but there are also instances in which definitions have been altered or blended together, essentially changing the concepts described.

• While all EPs will face some challenges with the new coding system, analysts are particularly concerned about smaller EDs and physician groups because these practices typically don’t have the ICD-10-CM implementation teams that larger systems have.