House Committee Leaders Signal Support for Current ICD-10 Deadline

December 12, 2014 in News

Two House committee leaders in a joint statement expressed their support for maintaining the October 2015 deadline for transitioning to ICD-10, EHR Intelligence reports (Murphy, EHR Intelligence, 12/11).

Background

U.S. health care organizations are working to transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 code sets to accommodate codes for new diseases and procedures by Oct. 1, 2015.

In a letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the Medical Society of the State of New York, the Texas Medical Association and the National Physicians’ Council for Healthcare Policy asked to delay the ICD-10 implementation until October 2017.

The groups urged Boehner to work with House Rules Committee Chair Pete Sessions (R-Texas) and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton (R-Mich.) “to have this [delay] added to a must-pass piece of legislation during the upcoming Lame Duck Session in 2014.”

According to sources familiar with lawmakers’ discussions, Sessions discussed the possibility of including an ICD-10 provision in the budget agreement with House leadership.

However, a continuing resolution omnibus spending bill, or “cromnibus,” to fund most of the federal government failed to contain language delaying ICD-10 (iHealthBeat, 12/10). The House narrowly approved the bill on Thursday (iHealthBeat, 12/12).

Statement Details

In the statement, Upton and Sessions said that the House Energy and Commerce Committee “has been working with CMS to ensure the Oct. 1, 2015, implementation is achieved” (Conn, Modern Healthcare, 12/11).

Upton and Sessions acknowledged that they have heard from several stakeholders who have expressed concern over the industry’s readiness to comply with ICD-10 and thanked those groups and individuals “for opening up this dialogue and expressing their thoughts and concerns regarding this issue” (Slabodkin, Health Data Management, 12/11).

The lawmakers noted that they are prepared to hold a congressional hearing on ICD-10 implementation progress in 2015.

They wrote, “It is our priority to ensure that we continue to move forward in health care technology and do so in a way that addresses the concerns of all those affected and ensure that the system works” (Modern Healthcare, 12/11).

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