News: AMA, UnitedHealthcare to develop new ICD-10 codes to address social determinants of health

CDI Strategies - Volume 13, Issue 15

The American Medical Association (AMA) and UnitedHealthcare announced a collaboration to better address social determinants of health (SDoH) by standardizing how this data is collected and processed through the creation of nearly two dozen new ICD-10 codes, Revenue Cycle Advisor reported.

SDoH include social and environmental factors that significantly influence a person’s health such as food, housing, transportation, and the ability to pay for care, medications, utilities, and other services. By combining traditional medical data with self-reported SDoH data, the codes could theoretically trigger referrals to social and government services to address patients’ unique needs, connecting them to local and national resources in their communities, according to HealthLeaders Media

The data model developed by UnitedHealthcare standardizes the capture and processing of SDoH information. According to the announcement, UnitedHealthcare has used this model to make more than 700,000 social service referrals for people enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans since 2017.

This collaboration is supported by AMA’s Integrated Health Model Initiative, launched in 2017, which is dedicated to ensuring the achievability of data portability standards that enhance information sharing and ultimately improve patient outcomes.

Editor’s note: To read Revenue Cycle Advisor’s coverage of this story, click here. To read HealthLeaders Media’s coverage of this story, click here. To read the full announcement, click here. To read about how CDI can be involved with population health initiatives, click here.

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