News | September 22, 2014

Briefing To Answer Why We Need Better, More Robust Health Coding System Now

ICD-10 Critical to Improve Care, Cut Costs

Richer health data, cost effectiveness and better patient care – all are part of what the ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS coding system can help deliver. Why the new coding standards should be adopted on Oct. 1, 2015, is the subject of a Capitol Hill briefing taking place at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 23 at the Rayburn House Office Building, Room B-318. 

Hosted by the Coalition for ICD-10, a broad-based healthcare industry group, the briefing is open to members of Congress, their staff and the public. 

ICD-10 offers more specific codes, such as a way to note which side of the body was injured, as well as codes for diseases that hadn’t been discovered 30 years ago when the current coding system, ICD-9, was put in place. The United States is the only industrialized country that has not adopted ICD-10. 

“It’s remarkable how many advances we’ve seen in healthcare in the last 30 years – now it’s time to have a documentation system that reflects them,” said Sue Bowman, MJ, RHIA, CCS, FAHIMA, senior director, coding policy and compliance at the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). Bowman will moderate the panel. “It’s time to move forward with ICD-10 and start reaping the health benefits this system can guide us toward.” 

ICD-10 gives higher quality information for measuring service quality, outcomes, safety and efficiency, and will expand the capacity of public and private payers to keep pace with changes in medical practice and healthcare delivery. 

In addition to Bowman, speakers will include: 

  • Gail Eminhizer, CMM, CGCS, HITCM-PP, practice administrator, Digestive Health Associates of Northern Michigan, PC, Traverse City, Mich., and national advisory board member of the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management
  • John S. Hughes, MD, professor of medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn.
  • Jeffrey F. Linzer, Sr., MD, professor of pediatrics and emergency medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta
  • Thomas Pacek, vice president of information systems and chief information officer, Inspira Health Network, Bridgeton, NJ
  • Dennis Winkler, director, technical program management and ICD-10, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Rochester Hills, Mich.
  • Sandra J. Wolfskill, FHFMA, director, healthcare finance policy, revenue cycle MAP, Healthcare Financial Management Association, Chardon, Ohio

About the Coalition for ICD-10
The Coalition for ICD-10 is a broad-based healthcare industry group, including hospitals, health plans, hospital and physician office coding experts, vendors and the health information technology community. We are all united in the support of the U.S. implementation of the ICD-10 coding standard, which will provide a much better representation of current and future medical diagnoses and procedures than is possible with the 30-year old ICD-9 system. For more information, visit

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) represents more than 71,000 health information management and health informatics professionals in the United States and around the world. AHIMA is committed to promoting and advocating for research, best practices and effective standards in health information and to actively contributing to the development and advancement of health information professionals worldwide. AHIMA’s enduring goal is quality healthcare through quality information. For more information, visit

SOURCE: American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA)