Converting ICD-9 to ICD-10

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Implementing the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision (ICD-9) to International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) conversion on October 1, 2015, in the United States has been a long-term goal. While most countries in the world converted more than 10 years ago, the United States was still using ICD-9. Many countries in the world have a single-payer healthcare system, while there are thousands of different healthcare organizations (providers and payers) that presently exist in the United States. With so many different software platforms for healthcare providers and payers, the conversion had become that much more complicated and capital intensive for all healthcare organizations in the country. A few of the present delay reasons to the ICD-10 conversion in past years were the concurrent timelines for meeting meaningful use requirements for the electronic health record, testing with external payers and upgrades from vendors which added complexities and extra costs. The authors examine the reasoning behind the conversion as well as the delays, before making the conversion on October 1, 2015, and review the question regarding whether the government's decision to push the date back a year would have been helpful.