MOH News

Council for Cooperative Health Insurance Obligates Private Sectors to Use Australian Medical Coding
14 May 2011
​The Council for Cooperative Health Insurance (CCHI) has directed all health insurance companies and health services providers to implement the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Australian Modification (ICD-10-AM) and Australia Refined Diagnosis-Related Groups (AR-DRGS) within a maximum timeframe of two years. 

Secretary General of the Council for Cooperative Health Insurance, Dr. Abdullah Bin Ibrahim Al Sherief, stated that this resolution will contribute effectively towards upgrading the level of health services provided in the Kingdom, and will also act as an effective health-information exchange mechanism.  Dr. Al Shereif also added that the ICD-10-AM is considered the most important information exchange system worldwide, and is widely used internationally. 

The medical coding program classifies diseases, treatments and diagnoses in the form of internationally defined, six-digit codes. This coding system was developed by the World Health Organization, and is reviewed periodically to make sure it continues to meet health providers’ needs and that it also keeps pace with the latest developments in pathology.  

The General Secretary of the Health Services Council, Dr. Yacoub Al Mazrua, congratulated the Council for ICD-10-AM accreditation.  This system has been adopted by the majority of health sectors in the Kingdom since it is considered the ideal way to standardize the language used in health facilities for accurate diagnoses and treatment.  

Dr. Al Mazrua clarified that Health Services Council will soon issue a resolution stating the obligation of all governmental health sectors to adopt ICD-10-AM.  He also recommended that health sectors communicate with the Council for any assistance needed for them to comply with the new medical coding requirements.  The Council is the only organization authorized to grant medical coding licenses, according to the ICD-10-AM and AR-DRGS agreement.  The agreement, worth a total of SR 4,750,000, was signed with the Australian Commonwealth following the approval of the royal decree. 

The head of the National Health Committee and a CCHI member, Dr. Sami Al Abdul Kareem, said that adopting ICD-10-AM is considered a significant advance in the provision of quality healthcare services in the Kingdom.  The system will also enhance the quality of services provided by health insurance companies, and will also resolve many financial and auditing issues.  He added that the Chamber of Commerce will direct more than 7,000 service providers to keep pace with developments and will provide ICD-10-AM training courses for their personnel. 

The Manager of the Health Insurance E-transactions Project, Wael Al Dahasi, noted that ICD-10-AM allows for the use of more than 14,400 different codes and permits the tracking of many new diagnoses.  Medical coding is used for e-health input and output records also for e-health insurance systems.

Last Update : 28 May 2011 05:39 PM
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