Preparing for the new normal of ICD-10: Cerner

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Mike Hourigan was a floor nurse at a community hospital in Kansas City prior to joining Cerner in 1999. It happened to be the year of Y2K, so he ended up as an analyst. He worked his way through Cerner's consulting organization, managing several consulting teams, and then moved into the regulatory area four years ago. Currently, he has a team of about 45 people working on regulatory issues, in particular Meaningful Use and ICD-10.

I had the opportunity to speak with Hourigan to learn how he and his team are working with Cerner clients to prepare for the lead up to, and for doing business after, the approaching October 1st mandate of ICD-10.

(Editor's note: To hear audio excerpts of this interview, click on the media player buttons that run throughout this article.)

Free: How would you characterize the typical Cerner client?

Hourigan: We run from anywhere from a one doc practice to a 10-bed, critical-access hospital all the way up to hundred doc practices, large IDNs (integrated delivery networks), academic. So, we pretty much have every size [client] possible, I guess.

Free: How has your background as a nurse impacted your work with compliance issues?

Hourigan: Well, I think it helps tremendously, just having lived in that world and having regulations come down, and you’re asking [yourself] the questions of, "How does this fit into my workflow? What kind of impact is this going to have on the patient?" and, those types of things. I think I always try to keep those in mind when I’m being updated on regulations, or trying to figure out is there a workflow change that's going to have an impact that could be a potential impact to either a clinician’s workflow or a patient’s overall outcome. 

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