AMA Wire

Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012

This Week's News

CMS confirms 1-year delay to ICD-10; new compliance date is Oct. 1, 2014

CMS confirms 1-year delay to ICD-10; new compliance date is Oct. 1, 2014

Physicians now have an extra year to prepare for the new ICD-10 code set as the result of a final rule issued Aug. 24 by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The rule delays the compliance deadline by one year to Oct. 1, 2014.

The delay is intended to give physicians more time to ready their practices for the transition to ICD-10 and conduct testing prior to the compliance deadline.

"By allowing more time to prepare, covered entities may be able to avoid costly obstacles that would otherwise emerge while in production," CMS wrote in the rule.

CMS proposed the delay after the AMA urged the agency to reconsider implementation of the new code set, which will be costly for physicians to adopt. Consisting of approximately 68,000 codes, ICD-10 is a fivefold increase from the 13,000 codes used under ICD-9 and will require significant training and practice changes for physicians and their staff.

"The AMA appreciates the … decision to provide a one-year delay in response to AMA advocacy, but we have urged CMS to do more to reduce the regulatory burdens on physician practices so physicians can spend more time with patients," AMA Board of Trustees Chair Steven J. Stack, MD, said in a statement.

The final rule states that CMS will continue to work with the industry to provide outreach and education on ICD-10, and continue to engage stakeholders on a wide variety of ICD-10 implementation issues, including reducing the burden this transition will place on physicians and others in health care. The AMA will continue to engage CMS toward that end.

Visit the AMA's ICD-10 Web page to learn more about preparing for the compliance deadline.