Association of Clinical Documentation Improvement Specialists Celebrates 5th Anniversary with National "CDI Week"

Press Releases, September 10, 2012

The Association of Clinical Documentation Improvement Specialists (ACDIS), the premier healthcare community for clinical documentation professionals, will celebrate its fifth anniversary this month with a series of events to commemorate CDI Week, September 17-21, 2012.

Clinical Documentation Improvement Week (CDI Week), which occurs annually during the third week of September, is a national week of recognition designed to increase public awareness of the CDI profession and provide broader education on the importance of proper documentation of medical care in the U.S.

CDI professionals work as intermediaries between physicians and coders, typically in the inpatient acute care setting. They help physicians translate their clinical language into the highly specified documentation required for healthcare coding by querying physicians when information is incomplete, contradictory, or unclear. During CDI Week, organizations across the country recognize and celebrate the value of CDI programs and the distinct skills and expertise of CDI specialists.

"Clinical documentation is a crucial element of the fast-changing healthcare industry, which is transitioning rapidly to electronic health records and more precise reimbursement policies that rely on standardized coding," said Brian Murphy, CPC, director of ACDIS. "CDI is a growing profession that incorporates the skills and understanding of a variety of other healthcare professionals including nurses, coders, and physicians."

In conjunction with CDI Week, ACDIS conducted its second annual CDI Industry Overview Survey of its membership. The survey found that more than 60% of CDI professionals see an opportunity for the growth of the profession and that 47% of respondents expect to expand their documentation review efforts to all healthcare payers. In addition, respondents indicated that facilities are expanding their CDI programs' focus to documentation related to quality measures (23%), severity of illness/risk of mortality indicators (34%), and indicators for conditions present on admission (25%). This expansion comes as the government shifts to new Medicare payment methodologies, such as Value-Based Purchasing, which focus on reducing healthcare costs while increasing the quality of the care provided.

As a part of its ongoing CDI Week activities, ACDIS will offer a free download of the national survey, which examines topics such as career advancement, data mining and reporting, electronic queries and ICD-10 planning. With the support of CDI Week partners ChartWise Medical Systems, Inc., J.A. Thomas & Associates, Maxim Health Information Services, and Meta Health Technology, ACDIS will also conduct daily interviews with industry experts and post the interviews on the association's web site.

"CDI professionals are responsible for administering programs that ensure their organizations properly manage documentation in a way that supports accurate, quality health information," said Murphy. "An effective CDI program is essential in order to comply with all major reimbursement audits and support other important initiatives aimed at improving the quality of healthcare in the U.S."

ACDIS was launched in 2007 to create an association dedicated to the unique needs of CDI professionals. ACDIS is a division of HCPro, Inc., a leading provider of integrated information systems, analysis, and workflow solutions to the U.S. healthcare industry. All decisions made about the association are driven by an independent board of directors at ACDIS and various program committees.

Additional resources for CDI specialists and program directors, including an electronic toolkit, media resources, and communication messages for medical staff and organization-wide education, are available at www.acdis.org. For sponsorship opportunities to partner with ACDIS, contact Paul Mattioli at pmattioli@hcpro.com or 800-639-7477. More information about CDI Week offerings and activities can be found at http://www.hcpro.com/acdis/cdi_week.

About ACDIS
The Association of Clinical Documentation Improvement Specialists (www.ACDIS.org) is a rapidly growing community of 3,200 members with more than 40 local chapters, in which CDI professionals share the latest tested tips, tools, and strategies to implement successful CDI programs and achieve professional growth. Its mission is to serve as the premier healthcare community for clinical documentation specialists, providing a medium for education, professional growth, program recognition, and networking.