ICD-10 is the 10th revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD), a medical classification and coding system.

ICD-10-CM (clinical diagnoses) was developed by and is maintained by National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) under authorization by the World Health Organization. ICD-10-PCS (inpatient procedures) was developed by and is maintained by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), CMS, American Hospital Association and NCHS are the four cooperating parties responsible for the ICD-10 Coding Guidelines. ICD-10-CM/PCS incorporate greater specificity and clinical detail, thereby allowing for significant quality improvement. Additionally, the revision allows greater clarification for payers, by more accurately reflecting current technology and medical treatments.


The compliance deadline for ICD-10 is Oct. 1, 2015 — a change expected to impact all HIPAA-covered entities. While this rollout will entail both time and cost burdens throughout healthcare, the move from ICD-9 to ICD-10 reflects significant advances in medicine that have occurred during the last three decades.

Major changes

Practice areas impacted

Changeover from ICD-9 to ICD-10 will require significant preparations. The American Medical Association recommends an internal review of the following systems:

  • Clinical documentation
  • Practice management systems
  • Encounter forms
  • Electronic medical records
  • Reporting (public health & quality)
  • Contracts
  • Internal training mechanisms
  • Payer systems and contracts
  • Billing services
  • Trading/Transaction partners
  • E-prescribing systems
  • Budget

Planning for rollout

The CMS has published a handy resource list to help with planning. Here, one can find checklists, timelines and implementation guides according to practice type and size.

The financial impact of this rollout varies, depending on a wide variety of factors. Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) provides a free, Excel-based cost-modeling predictor on its website.

Code references

Looking for handy online resources to reference code changes? ICD10Data.com provides a free, regularly-updated online ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS reference system to manually look up new codes. Another great online resource can be found at ICD-10 Code Search. This free online site provides an ICD-9 to ICD-10 crosswalk.


Implementation of ICD-10 is not optional, and rollouts will be complex. This article highlights some important facts and resources regarding the transition to ICD-10.

Additional references

1. A Provider's ICD-10 Implementation Toolkit

2. ICD-10 information from AMA

3. ICD-10 information from AHIMA