Health Information Management

Associate Director’s Note: Happy Holidays from ACDIS

CDI Strategies, December 18, 2014

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It’s hard to believe that the holiday season is upon us here again. One minute we’re plotting ICD-10 implementation and planning summer vacations, and the next moment we’re … once again plotting ICD-10 implementation, and advocating that this time the implementation date remain steadfast.

It’s true that 2014 has been a whirling dervish of activity on the ICD-10 front. Delays and threat of delays have negatively affected a variety of industries on the national level, and HIM and CDI department plans on a more closer-to-home level. Yet, CDI programs need not hang their hat on the ICD-10 hook. As those working in the industry well-know, CDI staff are often called on to wear multiple hats—so clearly we must have multiple hooks to hang them on.

In the past year, many CDI programs made significant strides in earning physician support for documentation improvement, and believe it or not many programs have snuck in ICD-10 documentation education along the way, getting physicians used to documenting now for what (delays or no) will inevitably become the next code set. In the past year, too, CDI programs have taken what may be one of the most significant strides for the profession—stepping back, assessing their program’s strengths and weaknesses, taking a broader look at healthcare reimbursement landscape, and determining what role they can play in preparing their physicians and their facilities for the future.

Sure, time moves quickly. Baby New Year begets Valentine hearts which quickly sprout patches of four-leaf clovers where Easter bunnies roam leaving eggs for old Uncle Sam before he boards the back-to-school bus to pick up his jack-o-lantern that will later (no doubt) be cooked down for Thanksgiving pie and it all seems to happen in a blink of an eye. While we all prepare for our own various personal and professional holiday traditions, we encourage you to pause and reflect (and maybe even do a little deep data digging) on what you’ve personally accomplished and how you and your team can continue to grow in 2015.

Take time to write out your 2015 CDI resolutions—take that Boot Camp you’ve been wanting to take, study for the CCDS exam and actually take it this year. But also take time to make a list patting yourself on the back for all the progress you’ve already made, for all the documentation you’ve helped with, all the acute exacerbations you’ve helped get into the medical record.

All the best for a happy, healthy, and CDI successful 2015!

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