Health Information Management

CMS extends deadline to volunteer for ICD-10 end-to-end testing

APCs Insider, January 16, 2015

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By Steven Andrews
CMS is giving providers additional time to volunteer for its second wave of ICD-10 end-to-end testing to January 21, presumably in an effort to get closer to its target of approximately 850 participants.
The testing, which will take place the week of April 27-May 1, is planned to demonstrate that:
  • Providers and submitters are able to successfully submit claims containing ICD-10 codes to the Medicare Fee-For Service claims systems
  • CMS software changes made to support ICD-10 result in appropriately adjudicated claims
  • Accurate remittance advices are produced
CMS had set a January 9 deadline to volunteer before extending it last week. CMS originally claimed end-to-end testing was not necessary, but the agency reversed course in early 2014. It had scheduled one round of testing before cancelling it as a result of last spring's one-year implementation delay.
The end-to-end testing opportunity was a big win for providers eager to test their ICD-10 coding and claims submission before implementation, so it's unfortunate CMS had to extend its deadline seemingly just to attract enough volunteers.
Providers could be slow to sign up for a variety of reasons. They may not have enough staff and time to devote to testing. More troubling for the industry at large, they may not be ready for testing if they're behind CMS' recommended timeline for implementation. Or they may just have had trouble coordinating efforts during the busy holiday season as they grappled with a host of new regulations and policies.
The most ardent supporters of end-to-end testing may have also signed up for the first round that's set to take place January 26-30. The results of that testing period could prove vital for ICD-10 proponents and opponents alike, as any issues with claims could serve as fodder for Congress to begin pushing for another delay.
Providers interested in the upcoming testing period should look for volunteer forms on their MAC's website and view CMS' new list of frequently asked questions to learn more. 
Do you plan to participate in CMS' end-to-end testing opportunities? Let us know by voting in the poll below.
  • Yes, we're already signed up for the first round
  • Yes, we plan to participate in the second or third round
  • No, we don't have the time, money, or staff to participate
  • No, we're not close enough to being ready for implementation to test
  • No, we don't think we need to in order to be prepared for implementation
Click here and scroll to the bottom of the page to vote.

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