If the current deadlines hold for both the ICD-10 code sets and the Version 5010 data standards, there are 46 companies in the Electronic Health Record Association that will be ready, according to Charlie Jarvis, the trade association's co-chairman.
Health records group vows to meet deadlines
The American Medical Association's House of Delegates voted to place the AMA in opposition to the Oct. 1, 2013, compliance deadline for the International Classification of Diseases 10th Revision. Meanwhile, the CMS announced it would hold off for 90 days on enforcing the Jan. 1, 2012, compliance deadline for the ASC X12 Version 5010 upgrade.
Both changes are federally mandated under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.
Jarvis, vice president for healthcare industry and government relations at NextGen Healthcare Information Systems, a developer of EHRs and practice management systems for office-based physicians, was diplomatic in discussing the AMA resolution. He asserted that if there is a problem with ICD-10, it won't be a lack of vendor readiness.
"I would never want to speak negatively or positively about a recommendation such as this," Jarvis said. "I'm sure the AMA has its motivations."
But from the perspective of EHRA member companies, "We have been preparing for 5010 and ICD-10 for a couple of years," Jarvis said. "We’re going to make sure our clients are going to move ahead with the automation solutions."
With regard to 5010, "We feel strongly that we will be in a position where those providers will be able to meet the demands of 5010 on schedule," he said.
Furthermore, in terms of retooling their systems for ICD-10, members consider their level of readiness to be proprietary information, so the association isn't gathering that information, Jarvis said. Thus, he cautioned that his estimate of industry preparedness for ICD-10 is more on the range of conjecture.
"I would say nobody is done," Jarvis said. "I think that's probably a fair statement. And I think everybody is on the path from virtually done to on a path with some ways to go."
Still, he said, of the 46 EHRA members: "Everybody is committed to meeting the deadline. We'll get there. I think we have no choice. I think with our past history (with) the original HIPAA regs and meaningful use, we all get there because it's part of the price to pay to be successful in the market. So, we just do it for our customers."
Follow Joseph Conn on Twitter: @MHJConn.
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