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Kaiser Permanente goes mobile AHIMA: Keep moving forward on ICD-10 transition


Kaiser Permanente launched a mobile-

optimized version of its member website on Jan. 24, enabling nearly 9 million patients to have 24/7 ac- cess to their health information on Android mobile devices. According to the company, this is one of the largest mobile health information connectivity projects in history and is a giant step forward in improving the healthcare experience for pa-

tients, no matter where they are. An iPhone app is also expected later this year. For now, users of other mobile devices can access the same set of care-support tools at no charge through the new member website, which is available through smartphone Internet browsers. Kaiser is one of only a handful of providers offering EHR access to its members in any way, much less via mobile devices. But Kaiser’s mobile efforts go far beyond EHR access. In 2011 alone, more than 68 million lab test results were made available online. The mobile-optimized site and the new app make that information, and much more, securely and easily available to members. Members can access their appointments and pharmacy orders, and they can exchange texts with their healthcare practitio- ners via the message center – all while on the go. Kaiser Permanente patients have been able to email their doctors for fi ve years, with more than 12 million e-visits in 2011 alone. The company expects that number to increase signifi cantly with the new app and mobile- optimized site.


Amidst cries to Congress to put the brakes on, the


The fourth edition of “Medical Imaging Consultant (MIC4),” pub- lished by HealthHelp and RadSite,

is a 250-page pocket reference guide that provides critical informa- tion on 303 clinical conditions to promote ordering the appropriate medical imaging procedures. This

book is designed for health professionals, but it also can be used by patients. More than 800 peer-reviewed medical journal article references are included to promote evidence-based imaging. Copies of the book are available for purchase through RadSite’s website (via the RadSite Store at or through Amazon.

sionals but it also 6 March 2012

American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) is making it loud and clear that the healthcare community needs to keep preparing for the transition to the ICD-10 classifi cation system. “If healthcare providers stop their ICD-10 planning and implementation now and wait to see if Congress will take action, they will not be ready in time for the compliance date,” says Dan Rode, AHIMA vice president for advocacy and policy. Currently, physician practices, healthcare delivery systems and payers use the 35-year-old ICD-9-CM classifi cation system, but it has not been able to keep up with medical knowledge and new disease factors, limiting health data that can be used to improve patient care. “The move to ICD-10-CM/PCS is at the founda- tion of healthcare information changes underway in the United States,” Rode says. Stopping implementation would result in a signifi cant fi nancial loss to the healthcare providers, health plans, clearinghouses, technology ven- dors and the federal government, all who have invested in the transition and have been preparing for the last several years. The ICD-10-CM code set – the portion that must be used by all healthcare providers – was created by taking the international classifi cation system ICD-10 and modifying it to meet the information needs of U.S. doctors. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have been modifying the code set for more than a decade with input from stakeholders in the healthcare community, including physicians. According to AHIMA, physicians are not required to use ICD-10-PCS, which refl ects the procedures and treatment provided by the practitioner. Instead, physicians will continue to use the American Medical Association’s CPT classifi cation sys- tem, lessening the changes doctors must make. “The concern that physicians must use all the codes in

the ICD-10-CM system is inaccurate,” says Rode. “Like we use dictionaries to fi nd specifi c words, practitioners use those codes that best fi t their practice.” Rode also says AHIMA coders have shown that a “super bill,” a form that many practices still use, can be assembled in less than a day for most small practices, making the transition easy for those who do not want to invest in other automated options. Find out more on the AHIMA ICD-10 website:


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