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As ICD Coding Becomes More Complicated, It Is Time To Outsouce So You Don’t Get Squashed Like A Bug On A Windshield

ICD 10 coding changes just like everything else in the world of home health. If you don’t change with it, then you will get annihilated when you audit your charts or someone audits you. Ultimately, in order to cover yourself when the rubber hits the road, you must have people that know what they are doing when it comes to Oasis and coding. So many agencies are self-taught and it means a lot of errors not only in accuracy but also in calculation of dollars you receive. Let’s look at why outsourcing may make a lot of sense for you today.

5 Coding Mistakes By Agencies Today:

As we consider everything that has changed in the industry, does it make sense to continue coding the same way you did 20 years ago? Of course it doesn’t. However, it is something we see a lot. Here are some of the common mistakes we see today:

  • Non-Certified Coders Are Responsible For ICD 10 Coding
  • Nurses Do Their Own Coding
  • The Coder Isn’t Oasis Certified
  • The Coder’s Main Role In The Agency Is Another Job Position
  • The Person Responsible For Coding Does Not Keep Updated on Coding Changes Or Know Where To Find Updated Info

Are any of these things true in your agency? Don’t minimize a small Medicare footprint or the importance of getting the codes right. Don’t expect your coder to have multiple job roles and be the expert in coding and documentation too. You set them up for failure. It’s a problem at billing and auditing time. You need someone certified who knows everything that needs to be in documentation to place the code on the 485. It is way too common for the “coder” to be given the ICD 10 book and a title. It doesn’t mean the employee is qualified to code. Nurses have so many things to do in the home. Maybe ICD 9 coding was OK for your nurses to do, but this is a whole new ballgame. They need to provide the hands-on care and manage the care plan. They cannot spend the time needed to accurately code. Since the Oasis goes hand-in-hand with coding, your coder needs to be Oasis certified. It’s important for the person reviewing the documentation for coding really understands the assessment tool and how the codes need to coincide with it.

Auditing:

Let’s go back and consider the Oasis assessment tool, the nurse’s documentation, and the ICD 10 code together at the time of Medicare audit. When you make the mistakes we have listed above, you put your agency at big risk to lose a chunk of money when you get audited. You can’t look back later after your charts get pulled for ADR and wonder how you fix discrepancies from the nurse’s assessment, the Oasis, and the code itself. It’s too late. How many episodes of reimbursment can your agency afford to lose before you are at risk to close? Does cutting the corner of not having someone certified really save you money? No , it doesn’t. Spend the money. You will see the money you receive by getting the coding right should be more and you minimize your risk later.

Join Us For Our Free ICD 10 Coding Webinar:

Register today for our free ICD 10 coding webinar October 7th, Are You Leaving Money On The Table? At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we can help you with your outsourced ICD 10 coding or help you with overflow in times of surge. Call us today at  206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how we can help you!

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