ACR seeks help, offers resources ahead of ICD-10 transition

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 - Uphill ICD-10

The American College of Radiology (ACR) is asking radiology and radiation oncology practices to be on the lookout for potential errors in the ICD-9 to ICD-10 translation.

The organization is urging providers to alert them and their local Medicare contractor if a previously payable ICD-9 diagnosis code has been omitted from the list of approved and medically necessary ICD-10 diagnosis codes.

Some of the local and national coverage determination (LCDs and NCDs) policies for procedures commonly performed and billed could have slipped through the cracks in the conversion to the vastly more detailed and expanded ICD-10 dataset. Coding specificity required by NCDs and LCDs does not change and all coverage policies that currently require a specific diagnosis under ICD-9 should accurately reflect the equivalent ICD-10 code(s).

The ACR will communicate with the Carrier Advisory Committees in an effort to address any ICD-10 conversion issues and/or omitted diagnosis codes, according to guidance from the organization.

Those policies that have been converted to ICD-10 codes are identified by a “FUTURE” status and are listed with an “October 1, 2015 effective date.”

Guidance from the ACR includes numerous resources for the transition including a downloadable Medicare coverage database that contains Access files that can be used to assist in analyzing all policies including converted ICD-10 LCDs.

ACR also identified trends in the converted LCD files including fewer ICD-10 LCDs, an increased number of diagnosis codes, a small percentage of inaccuracies in ICD-9 to ICD-10 crosswalks, a higher volume of ICD-10 codes tied to more complex coding and not yet posted LCDS which could indicate plans to retire existing policies.

Access the complete guidance.