How to keep your ICD-10 project team on track

An update from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reminds providers that you should be meeting regularly with your ICD-10 project team to discuss transition activities, challenges and needs.

CMS offers the following tips for holding in-person or conference calls to check in with your team.

For starters, establish a day and time when the meeting will occur each month (e.g., the first Tuesday of the month at 1 p.m.). Consistency in scheduling will reinforce that ICD-10 is a priority for your practice. Of course, as the transition date approaches, you should consider switching to more frequent meetings – weekly or bi-weekly.

To ensure good use of everyone's time:

  • Create an agenda. Distribute it prior to the meeting to help keep the discussion on track. The agenda will also help team members prepare their individual updates.
  • Reserve time for questions. Encourage team members to ask questions at the end of the meeting to clear up any uncertainties.
  • Take notes and draft action items. Following each meeting, circulate key takeaways and action items. This will keep everyone informed about important decisions and individual responsibilities.

Post-meeting discussions should focus on:

  • Progress on transition activities. This will keep the team up to date on assigned tasks. You may also want to use this time to set deadlines and goals for completing task activities.
  • Upcoming educational activities. Share information about local events or online training sessions that may benefit the team. Consider sharing ICD-10-related articles to keep team members informed about the latest news.
  • Best practices. Perhaps you've heard about a novel way to address part of your transition to ICD-10. Disseminate that information and discuss how it could be applied in your group's implementation plan.
  • Challenges. Freely talk about any challenges the team has encountered – and brainstorm ways to overcome those obstacles.