Do Medical Codes Ever Change?


Quick Answer

The International Classification of Diseases medical coding system set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is scheduled to change from ICD-9 to ICD-10 on Oct. 1, 2015, as the American Medical Association explains. In addition, the ICD codes are routinely updated while in use.

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Full Answer

A partial freeze of the codes in ICD-9 was announced in 2010 as part of the effort to make the overall change to ICD-10. The new codes in ICD-10 are scheduled to undergo a freeze during which no changes are made until Oct. 1, 2016, according to the AMA. The AMA and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services have issued guidance to help with the changeover and have ongoing efforts to help physicians adjust to the change.

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