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EGEMS (Wash DC). 2019 Apr 12;7(1):14. doi: 10.5334/egems.281.

Impact of ICD-10-CM Transition on Mental Health Diagnoses Recording.

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Kaiser Permanente Washington, US.
Harvard Medical School, US.
Kaiser Permanente Southern California, US.
Kaiser Permanente Northwest, US.



This study examines the impact of the transition from ICD-9-CM to ICD-10-CM diagnosis coding on the recording of mental health disorders in electronic health records (EHRs) and claims data in ten large health systems. We present rates of these diagnoses across two years spanning the October 2015 transition.


Mental health diagnoses were identified from claims and EHR data at ten health care systems in the Mental Health Research Network (MHRN). Corresponding ICD-9-CM and ICD-10-CM codes were compiled and monthly rates of people receiving these diagnoses were calculated for one year before and after the coding transition.


For seven of eight diagnostic categories, monthly rates were comparable during the year before and the year after the ICD-10-CM transition. In the remaining category, psychosis excluding schizophrenia spectrum disorders, aggregate monthly rates of decreased markedly with the ICD-10-CM transition, from 48 to 33 per 100,000. We propose that the change is due to features of General Equivalence Mappings (GEMS) embedded in the EHR.


For most mental health conditions, the transition to ICD-10-CM appears to have had minimal impact. The decrease seen for psychosis diagnoses in these health systems is likely due to changes associated with EHR implementation of ICD-10-CM coding rather than an actual change in disease prevalence. It is important to consider the impact of the ICD-10-CM transition for all diagnostic criteria used in research studies, quality measurement, and financial analysis during this interval.


ICD-10-CM; bipolar disorder; depression; electronic health record; mental health; psychosis

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