December 2011
  Fifteenth Edition
ICD-10-CM 2012 Update Released
For those who believe that ICD-10 implementation may be postponed, here is some news!
Despite hectic lobbying by various interest groups to delay the ICD-10 implementation, it seems like CMS is on track to pave the way for a timely transition to ICD-10 with no talk of postponement or delay whatsoever. One sure sign of this was the release of 2012 update to ICD-10-CM this month. With no major updates expected until the implementation date of October 1, 2013; now is the right time to start learning and preparing for medical coding within the ICD-10 environment.
ICD-10 Transition: Avoid Overspending On Upgrading IT Infrastructure
Healthcare organizations are making significant investments in IT and infrastructure upgrades to meet the ICD-10 implementation deadline. As the date is less than two years away, organizations may face the risk of overspending on upgrading.
For many organizations, the biggest challenge may not be the implementation of a new system; but rather the progression of an outdated IT infrastructure to support a new system (updating servers, end user devices, applications, network, etc). Other roadblocks to compliance include weaknesses in the alignment between procurement and IT, and in the way that vendors (and vendor spending) will be managed. Hospitals may be at risk for making major IT investment decisions hastily, which will inevitably lead to IT overspending. These challenges also create an opportunity for process overhauls and much needed changes on the technology front.
Coding Of Osteoarthritis-Related Encounters In ICD-10-CM
Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative arthritis or degenerative joint disease, is a group of mechanical abnormalities involving degradation of joints, including articular cartilage and subchondral bone. Symptoms may include joint pain, tenderness, stiffness, locking, and sometimes an effusion. A variety of causes; such as hereditary, developmental, metabolic, and mechanical may initiate processes leading to loss of cartilage. When bone surfaces become less well protected by cartilage, bone may be exposed and damaged. As a result of decreased movement secondary to pain, regional muscles may atrophy, and ligaments may become more lax. Mechanical stress is suggested as the most common cause for OA, but overweight, loss of strength in the muscles supporting the joint, are also suggested as the among the other common causes of OA.
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