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The Limitations of Working DRG/Concurrent Coding in CDI Processes

Posted By Giovanna Stahl
Clinical Documentation Improvement Services

Concurrent coding is considered an effective process for coders to use by ascribing ICD-10-CM codes through the duration of a patient’s stay. For it to streamline successful client documentation improvement (CDI) processes, it must be a custom-fit to the infrastructure of an institution or organization that implements it. Identifying and understanding the central limitations of a concurrent coding system will help your team learn how to revise your CDI program in order to utilize it to its greatest potential.

At ECLAT Health Solutions, our team of experts in clinical documentation improvement services have the experience to simplify and support your organization in creating a more efficient CDI program. From our professional perspective in this area, here are a few of the limitations to consider before implementing a concurrent coding system into place:

Fluid Interdepartmental Communication

In order to more accurately assess a patient’s condition as it develops, as well as speed up the process of claims payment and reimbursement, concurrent coding allows for the review of a patient’s records in real time, if not, as early as possible. To successfully carry out a concurrent coding system in a healthcare facility’s CDI program, there must be consistency during the review and patient documentation coding process. This means that the CDI staff must be able to access and communicate patient information between each other on a daily basis through efficient documentation, and preferably in electronic form.

Additional Time and Effort

Along with committing to ongoing timely evaluations, CDI staff members must also thoroughly and carefully process all documentation, while regularly adding or editing codes according to preceding information, keep track of the trends for DRG mismatches and educate peers on how to avoid making duplicate errors. Proper performance in this regard requires more time and focus from your staff, which may be difficult to execute depending on how many FTEs are available in proportion to the volume of patients admitted. Thus, not only does a well-managed CDI Process need both a seamlessly cooperative and devoted staff to run a well-managed concurrent coding system, but it also requires a sizeable and specialized team of experts to service one as well.

A Dedicated, Specialized Staff

Finally, to increase the likelihood of achieving a CDI Process that runs on concurrent coding you will also need a specialized staff of health information management (HIM) professionals, coding professionals and CDI specialists that effectively and collaboratively work together in performing accurate patient data capture. A coding professional’s awareness of Official Coding Guidelines and Coding Clinic, along with the CDI specialist’s clinical knowledge, will ensure an effective concurrent coding system is put into place within your organization. Setting performance benchmarks for the team is necessary to monitoring improvement long-term.

Excelling in Clinical Documentation Improvement Services

When executed properly, a collaborative concurrent coding system can improve patient care through accurate documentation that changes as conditions develop, as well as produce steady revenue for your organization through ensuring prompt claim payments and reimbursements. However, introducing this system into your organization without expert assistance may take more time than you and your team have to offer.

Our partnerships allow us to perform these functions with the assistance of system software that compiles the working DRG/CDI DRG and the final HIM DRG. In addition to that, we also provide reports to track and trend the efficiency and progress made utilizing the concurrent process of working DRG to final DRG. The ECLAT Advantage is founded on the interdisciplinary experience that our staff brings to the table to allow you to reach benchmarking goals. ECLAT Health Solutions is dedicated to participating in daily DRG mismatch evaluations and reconciliations. Even as we learn from Clinical Documentation Improvement the clinical portion, CDI acquires from us valuable HIM/coding concepts and compliant practices.

For any inquiries or interest in our CDI services, please contact us and fill out our form to get started today!

Tags: CDI, Working DRG, Concurrent Coding