Countdown to ICD-10: Get your Training Program on Track

Posted by Richard Jacobson

It is my pleasure to introduce a guest blogger for this latest post. Abbe Sodikoff is a senior vice president and health sales manager here at Jacobson, providing leadership to our subject matter experts health services team. Her insights into ICD-10 preparation are worth a read. Enjoy…

ICD-10-Blog-Side-BarThe official compliance date for ICD-10 has been delayed another year until October 1st, 2015. Despite the extended deadline, many health plans remain concerned about their readiness. According to a study, more than half of healthcare providers and health plans have completed only 25 percent or less of the necessary implementation.

The implementation of ICD-10 will affect all aspects across the health system from clinical documentation and business processes to claims and care utilization management. As such, it is critical that everyone working at these health plans, from the chief executives to the coders, is aware of, and familiar with, the new coding standards.

Education and training are key aspects of any successful implementation plan. If you haven’t done so already, now is the time to review the needs of your organization and create a training strategy to ensure that everyone is on board.As you prepare your ICD-10 training program, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind.


  • Treat ICD-10 training like you would treat any other training within your organization. Take time to develop a comprehensive project management plan and make sure to utilize the expertise of your training coordinators – or to contract one if you don’t have the necessary expertise on staff.
  • Determine a process for providing specific and relevant information to each individual team within your organization. For example, tailor your training to discuss ICD-10 changes to billing when you are training your billing staff.
  • Remember that everyone learns differently and at a different pace. Utilize a mix of eLearning courses and instructor-led sessions in your training.  Keep in mind that 65% of professionals are visual learners and incorporate visual clues and materials into your education materials.

Here at Jacobson, we are staying abreast of all ICD-10 updates and news in order to provide effective support to our clients as needed. In addition, we are encouraging our clients to assess their strengths and limitations regarding ICD-10 compliance and education, and to start an honest internal dialogue about the potential needs they may have during this transition.

What is your organization doing to prepare for ICD-10?