How much will it cost you to implement ICD-10?

implement icd10

Implementing the mandatory new ICD-10 coding system could cost you anywhere between $56, 639 and $8,018,364, depending on whether you run a small, medium, or large practice. This is more than three times what independent consulting firm Nachimson Advisors predicted back in 2008.

Cost of implementing ICD-10


Small practice

Medium practice

Large practice

·         Training

$2,700 to $3,000

$4,800 to $7,900


·         Assessment

$4,300 to $7,000

$6,535 to $9,600


·         Vendor/software upgrades

$0 to $60,000

$0 to $200,000

$0 to $2,000,000

·         Process remediation

$3,312 to $6,701

$6,211 to $12,990

$14,874 to $31,821

·         Testing

$15,248 to $28,805

$47,906 to $93,098

$428,740 to $880.660

·         Loss of productivity

$8,500 to $20,250

$72,649 to $166,649

$726,487 to $1,666,487

·         Disruption of payment

$22,579 to $100,349

$75,263 to $334,498

$752,630 to $3,344,976

·         Total

$56,639 to $226,105

$213,364 to $824,735

$2,017 to $8,018,364

About two-thirds of practices are expected to fall into the upper range of these costs, especially when it comes to software-related costs. “The markedly higher implementation costs for ICD-10 place a crushing burden on physicians, straining vital resources needed to invest in new health care delivery models and well-developed technology that promotes care coordination with real value to patients,” former president of the American Medical Association Ardis Dee Hoven said. “Continuing to compel physicians to adopt this new coding structure threatens to disrupt innovations by diverting resources away from areas that are expected to help lower costs and improve the quality of care.”

Such high figures are partly a result of post-implementation costs, such as testing and the potential risk of disruption of payments. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the rates of claim denial could rise 100% to 200% in the early stages of ICD-10. In addition to the hit to the wallet, many practices have not been able to perform proper testing or implement changes in workflow to make sure the new codes work as intended. This is a result of software vendors’ lack of preparedness for ICD-10.

The federal government mandates that healthcare providers switch from ICD-9 to ICD-10 on all claims and billing by October 1st. This move will increase the number of medical codes from 14,000 to 68,000. Needless to say this represents a huge administrative and financial challenge for practitioners already burdened with overlapping requirements and a rapidly changing healthcare landscape. Even though the transition has been delayed repeatedly, it seems as if physicians are nowhere near compliance as they were a year ago. 

Related Read: