The following excerpt was originally posted on EHRIntelligence.com, on February 18th, 2015:
"In the midst of ICD-9 to ICD-10 transition, it is beneficial to cover the history and challenges of this dramatic change in healthcare coding.
The United States healthcare industry first adopted the World Health Organization’s ICD-9 medical coding system in 1979. The first meeting set by the World Health Organization for the Ninth Revision of ICD (ICD-9) took place in Geneva from September 30 to October 6, 1975.
The revisions included much greater detail at the four-digit subcategory levels and an elective procedure for classifying diagnostic statements called the dagger and asterisk system. Additionally, coding rules for mortality were changed marginally and new definitions for the statistics of perinatal mortality were introduced.
While the ICD-9 code set was useful for several decades, it no longer satisfies the needs of today’s healthcare community, as major advances have transformed the industry since the 1970s. The first modifications to ICD-9-CM volumes 1, 2, and 3 occurred in 1986 and the ICD-9-CM Coordination and Maintenance Committee (C&M) has made regular updates since then. Specifically, ICD-9 does not meet the health information requirements of the 21st century. By relying on this outdated system, the medical community would be negatively influencing the quality of healthcare data."