CMS' extended HIPAA 5010 enforcement deadline isn't good enough for the Medical Group Management Association, which has asked CMS for even more time on 5010. Will they get it? Will you?
Back in October MGMA called for a "contingency plan" on 5010 -- the new HIPAA records protocol -- on the grounds that "it is clear that a significant number of medical groups will not have the ability to transmit claims and other electronic transactions using the Version 5010 format by the Jan. 1 deadline," said MGMA CEO Susan Turney at the time.
After MGMA's and others' complaints, CMS announced in mid-November it would keep the deadline but suspend enforcement of it until March 31, 2012.
Last week -- a month after CMS extended its enforcement deadline -- MGMA again called for a contingency plan. "We oppose requiring the submission of a transition plan and timeline as a needless bureaucratic exercise..." said Turney. "HHS should immediately allow physician practices to continue submitting Version 4010 transactions."
Government Health IT's Tom Sullivan suspects "MGMA just might be gearing up to join the AMA’s public efforts to kill ICD-10," the incoming coding standard to which 5010 is attached. It looks more to us like market identification: MGMA sells a number of products that educate its customers on 5010 compliance. It's worth a few press releases to let those customers know that MGMA is on their side in their hour of need.
We would be surprised if, having once (and only half-heartedly) accommodated the concerns of the medical community, CMS relented again. (For one thing: If they admit that 5010 is too much, how can they stick to the ICD-10 deadlines?) So we don't think MGMA will get their wish -- nor you yours.