Updated on: March 16, 2016

Identifying the Relationship between ICD-10 and Meaningful Use

Original story posted on: April 28, 2011

ED. NOTE: This is the first in a two part series that explores the relationship between Meaningful Use and ICD-10.

Linda Kloss, former CEO of AHIMA, may have said it best, “The last decade was about information technology. The coming decade will be about information management.”


The transition to ICD-10 is not an isolated effort. Categorizing ICD-10 as a coding, IT or a revenue cycle project, solely, isolates the mindset and governance of such an important effort within an organization (Glatthorn, 2011).

Rather, it is a large, strategic effort that affects many stakeholders. The impact of the changes is so significant and widespread that it will require realignment of strategic goals related to how an organization collects, maintains and uses clinical data (Wierz, 2011).

In fact, ICD-10 and Meaningful Use can be looked at as “undefined partners” in healthcare reform. The performance metrics of Meaningful Use and the increased granularity of ICD-10 have common objectives: to reduce costs and improve the quality of care.

The benefit is in allowing both billing and care to be described and managed at a more granular level (Mitchell, 2010). The key is being able to identify the impacts of both Meaningful Use and ICD-10 of an organization’s business process landscape by aligning the objectives, measure and standard requirements (Dingle, Keast, 2011).

Although the CMS rule on “Meaningful Use” does not provide financial incentives for ICD-10 implementation, the timelines of the regulations warrant inclusion of ICD-10 codes in the EHR framework (Infosys, 2011). The ICD-10 related transition to Meaningful Use promotes the interoperability of electronic health records and electronic data exchange. The hidden requirements of meaningful use revolve around the standardized data collection of unique data elements within the following:

- Problem Lists
- eCopy of Health Information
- Inpatient Procedures
- Clinical Decision Support
- eMeasures
- Health Information Exchange






Meaningful Use is based on the availability of discrete data so as to support automated reporting and analysis. ICD-10 will prove invaluable as Meaningful Use becomes more stringent (Mitchell, 2010). The biggest challenge will be to remember to Go Slow and Plan Well!





Dingle, John & Gary Keast. Mayo Clinic PowerPoint Presentation: HIMSS11 Creating Opportunities of Hope: Organizational Opportunities for ICD10 and meaningful Use. Retrieved: 4/20/2011: http://www.himssconference.org/docs/sphandouts/ICD8.pdf

Glatthorn, John (2001). ICD-10 Transition Planning: Evaluating Your Organization's Mindset. HCPro Just Coding. Retrieved 6/24/2011: http://blogs.hcpro.com/icd-10/2011/03/icd-10-transition-planning-evaluating-your-organization%E2%80%99s-mindset/

Infosys. ICD-10 & MU: Partners in Healthcare Reform. Retrieved 4/20/2001:http://www.infosys.com/offerings/industries/healthcare/Pages/ICD-10-meaningful-use.aspx

Mitchell, Robert N. (2010) The Connection Between Meaningful Use and ICD-10. For the Record.

Wierz, Chris, Johnson, Kerry (2001). Premier & HIMSS presentation: Implementing ICD-10 Lessons learned from Canada. Retrieved 4/20/2011: http://www.premierinc.com/advisorlive/Presentations/advisorlive033110-ICD10.pdf


Submitted by Brooke Palkie, MA, RHIA, Assistant Professor, Department of Healthcare Informatics and Information Management, The College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, MN.

Disclaimer: Every reasonable effort was made to ensure the accuracy of this information at the time it was published. However, due to the nature of industry changes over time we cannot guarantee its validity after the year it was published.
Brooke Palkie, MA, RHIA

Brooke Palkie, MA, RHIA is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Healthcare Informatics and Information Management at the College of St. Scholastica. In her current role as faculty, Brooke is responsible for successfully transitioning the coding and classifications curriculum to ICD-10. Additionally, Brooke is involved with a HRSA grant funded research effort to implement a rural health technology project focused to improve healthcare quality and reduce costs.