Healthcare News & Insights

HHS proposes 1-year ICD-10 delay

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced plans to push back the deadline for switching to the new ICD-10 coding system. After nearly two months of speculation about the length of the delay, a proposal has been released. 

HHS has proposed moving the ICD-10 deadline back one year, from the original Oct. 1, 2013, to Oct. 1, 2014, the agency announced April 9.

The change in deadline is included as part of a proposed rule designed to simplify administrative processes and create standards for electronic healthcare transactions. HHS estimates the proposed changes would save providers and health plans up to $4.6 billion over the next 10 years.

The agency first revealed plans to delay the ICD-10 transition in February, after several health industry groups argued that the original deadline placed too big a burden on providers and other healthcare organizations.

After that announcement, providers were warned by many experts not to pause or abandon their ICD-10  implementation plans because it wasn’t clear how long the delay would be, or whether the plan would even be made official.

The one-year extension is still in the proposal phase, but organizations now have a better idea of what deadline to expect. The rule is expected to be published in the Federal Register on April 17. After that, comments from the public will be accepted for 30 days, and then a final rule will be issued.

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