By Kelly Williams, MBA, RHIT, RMA, CPC, CPC-I
Faculty, Health Information Technology Department, School of Health Sciences
On October 1, 2015, the United States adopted a new coding system that had been long awaited and anticipated for many years. Many professionals in the industry were
What is ICD coding?
The abbreviation ICD stands for International Classification of Diseases. When looking at the abbreviation ICD-10-CM, the 10 stands for the tenth revision of ICD; the CM stands for Clinical Modification. The previous coding system used in the United States was ICD-9-CM and this was the ninth revision of the ICD coding system. ICD-9-CM was outdated, and as a result was causing many issues with the validity and accuracy of the data that was collected during the coding process. The numbers of codes in the ICD-9-CM codebook were also not extensive enough to capture all diseases and illnesses.
With the implementation of ICD-10-CM/PCS, the specificity of the codes is much greater and there are several areas in health care that can benefit from these updated codes. Some of the improvements we will see are in the following areas:
- Quality of care tracking
- Improvement in pay for performance processes
- Track the amount of resources being used
- Track the number of medical errors in a facility
- The ability to share meaningful data with outside organizations
- Better follow and tracking for chronic disease patients (Archer 2012)
Job Outlook for Coders in the New Industry
Now that we have discussed the transition to ICD-10-CM/PCS and the numerous benefits to health care organizations throughout the United States, let's look at how this is affecting the job market for coders right now. As the ICD-10-CM/PCS implementation date loomed closer and closer, it is expected that opportunities for coders may increase and could also open up new opportunities to those that are new to the career field.
Some of the opportunities may include apprenticeships where new coders and graduates can get on-the-job training and then move into a permanent coding position. This allows the coder time to fully learn
On the medical coding jobs boards, coders may find
With this new and exciting climate in health
Kelly Williams, MBA, RHIT, RMA, CPC, CPC-I, is a faculty member at Kaplan University. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not represent the view of Kaplan University.
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