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Partial Code Freeze for ICD-9-CM and ICD-10 Finalized

September 17, 2010—The ICD-9-CM Coordination and Maintenance Committee-the group with jurisdiction over any action impacting the ICD-9-CM and ICD-10-CM/PCS code sets-agreed at their bi-annual meeting Sept. 15 to enact a partial freeze of the ICD-9-CM and ICD-10 coding systems, beginning Oct. 1, 2011. Their decision followed a request for public input from the committee and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on a recommended partial freeze schedule. As required by statute, starting Oct. 1, 2013, ICD-10 codes will be required for all HIPAA transactions, including inpatient hospital and outpatient claims.

The code freeze implementation schedule is identical to the CMS proposal included in the Fiscal Year 2011 Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) Rule. The AAMC, in comments submitted to CMS on the FY 2011 IPPS proposal, supported a code freeze to "allow for sufficient time for all affected parties to focus on the complex implementation process."

The partial freeze will be implemented as follows:

The last regular, annual updates to both ICD-9-CM and ICD-10 code sets will be made on Oct. 1, 2011.

  • On Oct. 1, 2012, there will be only limited code updates to both the ICD-9-CM and ICD-10 code sets to capture new technologies and diseases as required by section 503(a) of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MIPPA, P.L. 108-173).
  • On Oct. 1, 2013, there will be only limited code updates to ICD-10 code sets to capture new technologies and diagnoses as required by MIPPA. There will be no updates to ICD-9-CM, as it will no longer be used for reporting.
  • On Oct. 1, 2014, regular updates to ICD-10 will begin.


Will Dardani
Clinical Policy and Practice Specialist
Telephone: 202-828-0541

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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.

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Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806