by Brendon Nafziger
, DOTmed News Associate Editor | April 09, 2012
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has proposed delaying the adoption of a divisive
new morbidity classification scheme by one year to give providers a better shot at meeting the deadline, in keeping with statements put out in February by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
On Monday, HHS said it was hoping to push back the ICD-10 deadline to October 2014. The current deadline, October 2013, has been held to be unworkable by many provider organizations, including the American Medical Association, which last week complained doctors would have a tough time preparing for it while also bracing for an "imminent storm" of federal regulations, such as the electronic health record incentive program.
The announcement came as HHS released a proposal to establish new unique identifiers for health plans, to make it easier for providers to handle billing. The HHS says these identifiers will help save up to $4.6 billion in red tape expenses over the next decade.
The public has 30 days to comment on the proposals after they're published in the Federal Register.