Archive for August, 2019


Posted by Samantha Serfass on August 28, 2019 in Blog, News


Anxiety is a normal and often healthy emotion. However, when a person regularly feels disproportionate levels of anxiety, it may become a medical disorder. Anxiety is often described as a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease. Typically, these feelings occur when faced with an imminent event which is often an event with an uncertain outcome.

 Factors that put people at risk of an anxiety disorder are:

  • Chemical imbalances
  • Long-lasting stress
  • Family history of anxiety
  • Trauma
  • Abuse of biological agents such as alcohol, drugs, or prescription medication.

Common medical conditions that may cause anxiety include asthma, diabetes, heart disease, hyperthyroidism, and hypothyroidism. Proper documentation of anxiety disorders is the key to capturing the patient’s condition in ICD-10-CM. Most often, the physician simply documents anxiety in the patient’s record. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recognizes five major types of anxiety disorders, and each have ICD-10-CM diagnosis codes.  

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

GAD is an anxiety disorder characterized by chronic anxiety, exaggerated worry and tension.  This can be present even when there is little or nothing to provoke it. 

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

OCD is an anxiety disorder that is characterized by recurrent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and/or repetitive behaviors (compulsions). Repetitive behaviors may include frequent hand washing, counting, checking, and cleaning.

Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is an anxiety disorder that is characterized by unexpected and repeated episodes of intense fear which can be accompanied by physical symptoms such as chest pain, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, or dizziness.

Post -Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal.  These events often may involve grave physical harm which occurred or was threatened.  Traumatic events that may trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults, natural or human-caused disasters, accidents, or military combat. 

Social Phobia (or Social Anxiety Disorder)

Social Phobia, or Social Anxiety Disorder is an anxiety disorder that is characterized by overwhelming anxiety and excessive self-consciousness in everyday social situations.  It can be limited to only one type of situation such as fear of public speaking or fear of eating in front of others.  In its most severe form, this disorder may cause a person to experience symptoms anytime they are around other people.

A physical examination and a psychological evaluation are necessary to make a diagnosis of anxiety. Sequencing anxiety codes will depend on the circumstance of the admission and the physician’s documentation in the medical record. While anxiety appears normally in everyday life and is useful when alerting a person to danger, it can become concerning when it disrupts normal activities.

Cynthia Alder-Smith, RHIT CCS

Auditor/ Educator Excite Health Partners

Mergers and Acquisition: Improving The Bottom Line

Posted by Samantha Serfass on August 19, 2019 in Blog, News

Mergers & Acquisition: Improving The Bottom Line

The transition from volume-based care to value-based care has been a driving force in the rise of merger and acquisitions in the recent years. Mergers and acquisitions allow organizations to tighten operations, streamline services and increase revenue. Many of the mergers and joint ventures are changing reimbursement models to cover the health of a populations all while reducing costs.

When merging two organization in ACO model, efficiency is key. An organization focusing on leveraging technology and increasing patient engagement is better suited to accommodate the public while targeting costs for the ACO.

Integration conversations are an important component surround mergers & acquisition. Integrating operations, IT assets, and supporting services as well as sharing of data between the two originations are vital pieces to consider. 

S.W.O.T Diagrams of each of the organizations can assist in developing the pieces of the puzzle when combining organizations. Identifying areas of weakness allow for additional partnerships to form strengthening the needed services. As healthcare organizations become larger and broader, niche services have the opportunity to accommodate certain patient populations. By increasing the patient satisfaction and leveraging technology, these services have the opportunity to be more efficient

Excite Health Partners is working with such a company right now.  By increasing patient engagement and satification, this organization excels in skill nursing services. As a result, they are purchasing service lines from healthcare organizations throughout the U.S.

Excite has also assisted a company by abstracting patient data. By scheduling the integration discussions in timely manner, Excite has helped to abstract data from three different EHR systems and able to populate all the data into our clients single EHR.

Whether it comes to strategic analysis, patient engagement, leveraging technology or just brute physical abstracting, Excite Health can be your Partner for your M&A.

Todd Klein

CIO, VP of EHR Services & Digital Solutions