ICD-10 Implementation Can Go Smoothly
By Dr. Jon Elion, Founder and
CEO of ChartWise Medical Systems
With the ICD-10 conversion deadline right around the corner, healthcare
professionals are doing all they can to make sure they are prepared for the
transition. Computer-Assisted Coding
(CAC) solutions alone will not be able to meet the specificity of documentation
required under ICD-10. The need for a comprehensive Computer-Assisted Clinical
Documentation Improvement (CACDI) solution to ensure accurate records, improve
outcomes and ensure equitable reimbursement is in high demand.
Southeastern Ohio Regional Medical Center recently addressed this
issue. The medical center opened its doors in 1952 as Guernsey Memorial
Hospital, named after the county it serves. Since then, it has served as Guernsey County’s
acute healthcare center and largest employer. A true community hospital, “Southeastern
affiliated with 180 physicians and is licensed for 99 beds. It has a coding
staff of seven, along with four clinical documentation specialists.
Stephens, director of documentation integrity/utilization management, started
as a documentation specialist four years ago, all documentation at medical
center was on paper. Over the years she
developed an Excel spreadsheet to track queries and create monthly graphs for
her director and vice president. While
it worked fine, the documentation team was also aware of the opportunities on
which they were missing out and the information they were unable to provide.
Search and Action
Amidst her search to find an application to assist the clinical
documentation specialists at Southeastern Med, Stephens attended the 2012
Northern Ohio Documentation Specialist meeting where she learned about ChartWise and later called for a demonstration of his company’s software.
For Stephens and her team, ChartWise was the clear choice. Their willingness to work with a small
community hospital, the affordability and the ability to import data via HL7
feeds helped them stand out from other vendors.
Stephens took the ChartWise software to the medical center’s Purchase
Analyst Support Team and pitched them on the software’s return on investment
(ROI), ease of use, ability to toggle from ICD-9 to ICD-10, and the minimal
internal support needed from the medical center’s IT team. Important to Stephens was the ability to demonstrate to our CEO that ChartWise could
help the staff accomplish more, improve the quality of care, and supplement the
Stephen said, “In our case, the addition of the documentation system
promotes the quality and integrity of care received, a decrease in medical
necessity denials, and more accurate coding.
These do not necessitate reimbursement figures but assist in our HVBP
(hospital value-based purchasing), APU (annual payment update), and validation
with CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services).”
Once ChartWise was selected, implementation went quite smoothly,
Stephens says. The ChartWise
implementation team and trainers worked closely with Stephens and her team,
preparing them for their go-live.
Southeastern Med implemented the ChartWise software in September of 2014,
and in the first three months, the medical center’s query impact captured more
than the previous nine months combined. Other
improvement reported by Southeastern Med are ease of use, time saved, excellent
support, and being able to test and easily transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10.
When asked about her favorite
ChartWise 2.0 features, Stephens says, “We love the program’s Sophie built-in
intelligence feature which helps guide the staff through queries and consideration
of other diagnoses. Then, there’s the
baseline to working DRG and the ease of review, thanks to features like color coded
notes. In the past, we would use an encoder
and each time we received a new or additional diagnosis we would have to start over.
Now, new information is simply added to
the list, which saves a tremendous amount of time.”
was this hospital’s choice, and they are happy with the choice. That is not to say other vendors don’t also
have good products. Rather, the lesson here is
that ICD-10 can be done well and painlessly.