Piecing It Together

icd-10 preparation bestPTPiecing It Together

ICD-10 changeover doesn’t present a pretty picture

How can Shannon solve the puzzle of improving clinical documentation?

Shannon leaned back in her chair, gazing out the window with a dreamy look in her eyes. Her husband, Mike, watched her with a smile. They’d been married for years and their life often seemed to be centered around work and kids, but he still enjoyed looking at her.

“I like physical problems,” Shannon mused.

That brought Mike back to earth with a thump he figured must be almost audible. “What are you talking about?”

“Problems with people’s bodies aren’t always easy to fix,” Shannon admitted, “but they’re easier to deal with than emotional ones.”

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“I’m guessing we’re talking about Tana.” Mike said.

“Yep,” said Shannon. “Mike, I don’t get it. She seems to think I’m out to get her with the changes in documentation for the ICD-10 code changeover. We’re all having to make the same changes. The codes require us to be a lot more specific. But Tana acts like I’m persecuting her.”

“The other clinicians aren’t responding that way?”

“Not yet, but I’m worried about it. That kind of bad feeling can spread fast.”

“Some people find change stressful,” Mike said. “I see it at the restaurant. Asking for changes can feel like criticism, too. Like, if there was nothing wrong, you wouldn’t ask for the changes.”

“In this case, if we don’t provide the kind of documentation we’re supposed to, we’re likely to end up with errors in the code or with inadequate clinical documentation.”

“I’m going to assume that that is something like being found storing cooked and raw meat together,” Mike joked.

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“Just like that. We could be audited, we could be out of compliance, and it could be even harder to get paid.”

“None of those things sound good.” The sound of a crash came from the other room. Mike sighed. “I guess I’m going to have to find out what broke.”

“No,” said Shannon, “let me go. I think I need all the practice I can get.”

Mike took his wife’s hand. “We can go together. You’ll have to get your clinicians on the same page alone, but I can certainly help you pick up whatever mess is waiting for us in there.”

How can Shannon solve the puzzle of improving clinical documentation?

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10 replies
  1. David
    David says:

    It is indeed a puzzle, but one that must be solved. Fortunately, practices like Shannon’s don’t have to do it alone.

  2. Reuven Lirov
    Reuven Lirov says:

    Solving teamwork issues is both a systemic and viral problem. Shannon needs to make sure, no matter how much she may “like” Tana, that Tana is on mission. Tana must believe in Shannon’s mission and both respect and trust Shannon’s direction.

  3. Jason Barnes
    Jason Barnes says:

    It is not Shannon vs. “Her Staff.” ICD-10 affects everyone and must be done. If she fears them, then she is not managing them correctly. Their license to practice is on the line if they are not documenting correctly as well. So bottom line, Shannon needs to enlist them in the same cause to solve this together.

  4. Heather Miller
    Heather Miller says:

    Making sure your documentation is compliant is more important than ever. This needs to be a team effort otherwise everyone will fail. If Shannon and her staff work together it will make tackling these problems easier.

  5. Lisette Acevedo
    Lisette Acevedo says:

    Shannon should let Tana know she is not alone in this. These changes are across the board for all clinicians so they should work together to get through the obstacle of more complicated documentation.

  6. Thomas Jorno
    Thomas Jorno says:

    Much of the anxiety can be addressed with education. Shannon should invest the time for her and her team to learn about the changes that are facing the industry together. Remove the mystery and uncertainty of the unknown is often an effective way to reduce the anxiety. And this can also be an effective way to further strengthen the team within your office. Attending webinars during the lunch hour as a team would be an effective demonstration of this.

  7. Amy
    Amy says:

    ICD-10 is a challenge for the practice and they will need teamwork, communication, dedication and vigilance to conquer this challenge. These, along with arming themselves with as much knowledge about it as possible through Webinars and/or coaching, will be the key to success.

  8. Charles Pritchard
    Charles Pritchard says:

    Being prepared for ICD-10 will take teamwork. This includes spending the necessary time to make sure each staff member understands the mission of the practice. This will help with a smooth transition but time is short and there is no time to spare.

  9. Robin Kortman
    Robin Kortman says:

    Pulling together as a team to understand the complexity of the changes to ICD-10 will strengthen the office as a whole and unify teamwork.

  10. Michelle Corrigan
    Michelle Corrigan says:

    Any change is difficult, especially one that could potentially prevent the practice from getting paid. The entire staff needs to work as a team and be prepared together for the approaching change to ICD 10. As the practice owner, Shannon should begin collecting educational material and scheduling her entire team for webinars so they learn together.

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