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CMS FAQs Offer Guidance for ICD-10 Compliance

FAQ list offers ICD-10 guidance while CMS office is closed during Thanksgiving holiday.

By Sara Heath

As we gear up for the holiday this week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has sent out an email reminding the healthcare industry of different ICD-10 frequently asked questions and the agency’s holiday hours.

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The FAQ list, which is intended to serve as a go-to guide for ICD-10 coding issues and questions, can be found on the CMS website. Topics covered on the FAQ list include CMS/AMA Flexibility Announcement, Claims Processing and Billing Guidance, Coding, General Equivalence Mapping, Home Health Provider Information, National Coverage Determinations (NCDs), and Local Coverage Determinations (NCDs).

Additionally, CMS announced its holiday hours for this Thanksgiving. The ICD-10 Coordination Center (ICC) will be closed 12 p.m. Eastern time on Wednesday, November 25, through Friday, November 27. However, providers may still send questions into the ICC during that time and can expect to have them seen when the offices reopen on Monday November 30.

CMS released other important ICD-10 news in recent weeks, including their strategies for absolving isolated implementation errors. Several of the issues addressed involved NCDs and LCDs, and CMS explained that permanent policies should be in place to resolve those problems by the start of 2016. Additionally, those who have experienced reimbursement issues with LCDs can expect CMS to reprocess those claims with no need for resubmittal.

These reported errors are in slight contrast with other previous CMS reports. At the end of October, the agency reported high success rates for ICD-10 implementation in its first metrics report. Less than a month following the code set’s rollout, claims denial rates were at about 10 percent.

That said, CMS maintains that it will not have a clear picture of ICD-10 implementation process until after a few pay cycles due to the 30-day period it takes for the agency to process Medicare and Medicaid claims.

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