November 23, 2015

AAPC to Join ICD-10 Coordination and Maintenance Committee

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The American Medical Association (AMA) has asked that AAPC be added as a cooperating party in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) committee responsible for development and maintenance of ICD-10 codes, guidelines, and descriptions — the ICD-10 Coordination and Maintenance Committee.

 

AMA Executive Vice President and CEO James L. Madara made the request in a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, noting that the AAPC “has the necessary expertise (and) experience, and can serve as the voice of physicians lacking in today’s cooperating parties.”

Other cooperating parties include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics; the American Hospital Association (AHA); and the American Health Information Association (AHIMA). The parties are responsible for the development and maintenance of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) code set mandated for use in the United States.

“AAPC’s 141,000 (now 153,000) members represent the highest level of expertise in the industry in the areas of medical coding, medical billing, medical auditing, compliance, and practice management,” Madara said in the letter, also noting that the Coordination and Maintenance Committee under-represents physicians and providers who work in the outpatient setting while focusing on hospitals and other facilities.

“This lack of representation is especially concerning given that the transition to ICD-10 will be most challenging for physicians and small practices,” Madara said.

“This represents a huge success in the growth of AAPC as well as (a recognition of) the importance and contribution of its members,” said Jaci Johnson Kipreos, AAPC’s National Advisory Board president, who added that the organization being made a partner would also help AAPC members.  

“With payment reforms and changes in the coding system, it is now vital for the cooperating parties to contain inclusion of physician coding representation, and AAPC is the best equipped to do that,” said Rhonda Buckholtz, AAPC’s vice president of strategic development.

 

 

Chuck Buck

Chuck Buck is the publisher of ICD10monitor and is the executive producer and program host of Talk Ten Tuesdays.

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