The U.S. Senate voted to delay the deadline for ICD-10 compliance again from October 1, 2014 to at least October 1, 2015. The cost of this delay is estimated be between $1 billion to $6.6 billion dollars according to CMS. Combined with the first delay from October 1, 2013 to October, 2014, that would mean that between $2 billion and $13 billion dollars have wasted in the past two years – in addition to the original billions of dollars for the initial ramp-up costs spent throughout the health care industry.
While the additional time to achieve compliance is beneficial to some organizations, it punishes others who have already invested the time and money to achieve compliance. New standards almost always require an investment in new and improved technology, which quickly becomes an “expected” commodity. While “necessity is the mother of invention”, until utilized, it is waste.
Hopefully, those who sit in judgment of the U.S. healthcare system’s cost-effectiveness are wise enough to understand that dollars spent on healthcare delivery is only a fraction of what is paid by the patients, or users, of the healthcare system. We can all use a deduction for our expenses in the calculation related to our performance.
A major step in the solution to improving healthcare delivery and reducing its cost is to adopt cost-effective technology, which will deliver comprehensive and functional capabilities in a timely manner.