IFHIMA Makes the Case for ICD-11 Adoption with its Latest White Paper

The transition to the new international coding set is all but inevitable, in light of its utility in documenting new medical advances and technology – it’s just a matter of timing.

As healthcare transformation progresses due to the digitization of data and advancements in medical science and technology, it is increasingly important that nations around the world begin planning for adoption of ICD-11. 

The International Classification of Diseases (ICD) has a long and valued history of creating and assisting in the tracking of mortality and morbidity data on a national and global scale. ICD-11 has been updated for the 21st century, and reflects critical advances in science and medicine through updated scientific content and enhanced clinical detail. It is fully electronic, though it can be used online, offline, or even in printed format. ICD-11 was formally adopted by the World Health Assembly in May 2019, with international mortality reporting utilizing ICD-11 commencing in January 2022. The International Federation of Health Information Management Associations (IFHIMA) acknowledges and commends the World Health Organization (WHO) for their development of a wealth of information, training, and reference materials available in support of the transition to ICD-11.

The IFHIMA Board of Directors believes that quality health information underpins all facets of healthcare policy, delivery system design, patient engagement, and the advancement of health and healthcare. A recent white paper demonstrates our vision of “a healthy world enabled by quality health information.”

With this white paper, IFHIMA hopes to guide and inspire healthcare professionals as they begin their journey toward the adoption and implementation of ICD-11. The march toward ICD-11 has already begun, and is discussed within the white paper and case studies from IFHIMA members.  

The white paper and global case studies delve into some of the specific challenges and accomplishments to date that countries and health information professionals may anticipate as they embark on their national or organizational journey to adopt ICD-11. Topics include benefits of ICD-11, planning, workforce development and education, transition from ICD-10 to ICD-11, field testing, and implementation.

Specific actions IFHIMA recommends for health information management (HIM) professionals include:

  • Actively participate in relevant task forces, committees, and workgroups;
  • Break down data silos through collaborative leadership with diverse stakeholders;
  • Ensure quality and usefulness of data;
  • Adopt lifelong professional learning;
  • Promote the need for education, training, and workforce development; and
  • Develop a solid understanding of ICD-11.

The white paper and case studies were written in collaboration among a group of IFHIMA members from countries including Australia, Barbados, Canada, Egypt, Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Nigeria, Spain, and the U.S.

The new white paper, IFHIMA Fosters Planning for ICD-11 Adoption with Global Case Studies, is available online at http://www.ifhima.org/.

It is our hope that this white paper and its related case studies inform and inspire readers as they begin their journey to the adoption and implementation of ICD-11.

https://ifhima.org/“>About IFHIMA

The International Federation of Health Information Management Associations (IFHIMA) is a non-governmental organization (NGO) in official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO). The Federation acts as the global voice of the health information management profession, supporting the importance of education and training, high-quality health data, and privacy of health information. IFHIMA is committed to the advancement of health information management practices and the development of its members for the purpose of improving health data and health outcomes.


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