Reflections of ICD-10 Change

While trying to come up with the perfect reflection today, I wanted to consider the most difficult change USA providers will need to embrace in the coming months. I think most of us would admit that it’s ICD-10.

Our biggest challenge to the ICD-10 transition will probably be ourselves. We are creatures of habit. When something works for us and a process in place serves us well, it is hard to move that process into a whole new domain.

But, is it really going to be that hard? Is it really going to be that bad? When I think about change, I try to put the changes I am facing into perspective and relate change to the important people in my lives…

My son finally learned to use the potty – after 12 months of bribery, begging and forced patience, he just one day figured it out. Making the transition to the toilet is scary for some children. For others it is all about control and defiance. But eventually they all figure it out, and they make the change. If he can do it, why can’t I?

My Grandma lived through the Great Depression and two World Wars before she and my Grandpa and their three kids packed up the station wagon and drove to Roswell, New Mexico to start a new life. She was forty when she started her true career and passion by matriculating into law school. At fifty she sat on the bench of the Superior Court for the first time, a few months after she summited Mount Kilimanjaro. At 91, she enjoys sending me excerpts of her poetry via email from her I-pad. If she can do it, why can’t I?

And then, there are my in-laws. They escaped the former Soviet Union after 20 year careers in music and sports in the hopes of providing a better life of opportunity for my husband.. After a year in a refugee camp in Europe, they moved to a tough neighborhood in the south side of Chicago. My mother in-law worked her way from a seamstress in a clothing sweatshop to stylist in couture fashion. She reinvented her violinist hands to the craft of sewing and mastered the English language. If they can do it, why can’t I?

This lovely July weekend, I challenge you all to look within your families and your friends and come to admire their various stories of embracing change. In many ways change makes us better and stronger. We will all make the transition to ICD-10, because it’s not going away. The challenge will be how we accept the change. Will we fight it tooth and nail? Will we prepare ourselves as it rolls out? Will we procrastinate until the last moment? Regardless of “how” we change, we should strive to tackle that transition with tenacity, integrity and grace.


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