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My go-to Web resources for quick ICD-10 coding questions

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Two sites to help providers and coders walk through the coding decision tree



An OBG Management reader recently requested assistance finding an app or Web site that would be helpful for International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10) coding, particularly for practicing ObGyns. It is not surprising that I have received this question, as we already are seeing a ton of smartphone apps that promise to search through the code descriptions quickly. None of these apps are ObGyn-specific but, given the vast amount, deciding which one is the best option to purchase and download can be a challenge.

Purchase considerations

Before you buy, decide what features you are looking for and make sure the app you have chosen can deliver what you need. Pay special attention to any reviews to learn the app’s pros and the cons. For instance, some apps offer code conversion from ICD-9 to ICD-10. Keep in mind, however, that not all conversions are accurate, and your search may just lead you to another unspecified code. Some apps will offer a decision tree, which is ideal. What you would like to avoid is an app that generates a list of 200 codes from a single search term.

A useful resource that I have found is this Buyers Guide to Mobile ICD-10 Apps from mHealthNews.1 This guide compares and contrasts the available apps (as of March 2014) for Android and Apple products. Some, you will note, are free; others are not. Try out a few before choosing. While several companies have developed products geared for ICD-10, many are not geared for mobile use and may have a substantial purchase price. Many of them also seem to be geared toward coders, not toward physician users.

My picks

ICD-10 Search was developed by e-MDs.2 It appears that this search program is part of a more extensive product that e-MDs sells, but for the time being, is free. This app deserves a look, especially because the decision tree format quickly gets you to the most specific code.

ICD-10 Code Lookup is the official offering from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).3 After you type in the term you are looking for, you get the search results in code order. The more specific your search terms, the closer you will get to the needed code. One caveat: the search mode is not set up to accept all clinical terms. For instance, I typed in "menorrhagia" and got 0 results; I typed in “menstruation, frequent” and I received 2 codes.

I hope this information is helpful, and I wish you an easy transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10.

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