ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS Query Guidelines

The ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS coding query process provides clinical coders, through their jurisdictions with an avenue to resolve coding queries to facilitate correct, relevant and nationally consistent assignment of ICD-10-AM and ACHI codes to episodes of care.

The query submission process also highlights problematic issues and/or anomalies within the classifications. These issues may then be reviewed and updated for subsequent editions of ICD-10-AM, ACHI and ACS.

If there is uncertainty as to whether old advice is still relevant then clinical coders should follow the query submission process outlined below. Local advice is not applicable nationally.

Individual Queries

The query process requires clinical coders to follow these steps before submitting a query to their State/Territory coding advisory committee representative.

  1. Review the current edition of ICD-10-AM, ACHI and ACS including any errata and current national published advice (national Coding Rules).
  2. Reference texts; perform a web search (if available).
  3. Seek advice from peers/local coding group/clinicians.

If the query is unable to be resolved through this process it may be sent to the State/Territory relevant representative. It is important that coding queries include any supporting documents, references and clinical advice.

Only nominated State/Territory representatives and a limited number of other authorised users have the authority to submit queries via ACE.

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State/Territory coding advisory committee queries

The coding advisory committees act as reference groups in each state/territory for clinical coders who request assistance on coding issues. These committees are responsible for responding to those coding queries. A query from the State/Territory representative must be of a significantly complex/difficult nature that cannot be resolved at a local level. The following steps must be performed by the committee before submitting a query.

  1. Review the current edition of ICD-10-AM, ACHI and ACS including any errata and current national published advice (national Coding Rules).
  2. Reference texts; perform a web search (if available).
  3. Seek advice from clinicians (as necessary).
  4. Review and discuss the query using the documentation and any references or clinical advice supplied and decide if a state/territory decision can be made.
  5. Determine if the query is significantly complex or of a difficult nature before submitting. Query submissions need to include supporting documents, references and clinical advice.
  6. Provide an interim jurisdictional response, where possible, and forward with the query.
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CAC Contacts

ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS coding queries should be directed to your nominated representatives in the first instance.

ACT Clinical Coding Group

Dianne Ramadan
Canberra Health Services
dianne.s.ramadan@act.gov.au

NSW Clinical Coding Leadership Group

Joanne Chicco
Manager, Data Quality System and Information Analytics
100 Christie Street
St Leonards NSW 2065
Joanne.Chicco@health.nsw.gov.au

SA Coding Advisory Group

Medical Record Advisory Unit
Corporate Finance
Department for Health and Wellbeing
PO Box 287 Rundle Mall
Adelaide SA 5000
medicalrecords@sa.gov.au

Victorian ICD Coding Committee

Carla Read, Committee Secretary
Victorian Agency for Health Information
50 Lonsdale Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
carla.read@health.vic.gov.au
Please submit queries online here

Clinical Coding Authority of Queensland

The Secretary
Clinical Coding Authority of Queensland
c/- Clinical Access Redesign Unit
Department of Health
GPO Box 48
Brisbane QLD 4001
CCAQ@health.qld.gov.au

NT Coders Forum

Activity Based Funding/Funding Performance Corporate DOH
Alice Springs Hospital
PO Box 2234
Alice Springs NT 0870
QUERY.CODING@nt.gov.au

Tasmanian Coding Advisory Committee

Julie Turtle
Clinical Coding Educator/Auditor
Performance Information & Commissioning Unit
GPO BOX 125B
Hobart TAS 7001
julie.turtle@dhhs.tas.gov.au

WA Clinical Coding Authority

Department of Health
1st Floor, C Block
189 Royal St
East Perth WA 6004
clinical.coding@health.wa.gov.au

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Query Process

Users of the classification require access to timely and nationally consistent coding advice which in turn informs updates to the classifications.

Queries are carefully reviewed and considered in order to provide consistent and relevant coding advice.

The query response process includes:

  1. Reviewing the current edition of ICD-10-AM, ACHI and ACS, including any errata.
  2. Reviewing current classification advice (national Coding Rules) contained in the Australian Classification Exchange (ACE).
  3. Referencing other classifications, including other international classifications and those currently under development such as ICD-11 and the International Classification of Health Interventions (ICHI).
  4. Referencing texts.
  5. Performing a web search.
  6. Seeking clinical advice from the Classification Clinical Advisory Group (CCAG) and where required, clinical speciality groups.
  7. Reviewing documentation pertaining to development of ICD-10-AM, ACHI and ACS.
  8. Where relevant, seeking international advice on issues of ICD-10 convention.
  9. Review by classification experts and expert advisors.
  10. Preparing a response.
  11. Publishing the query as part of national Coding Rules in ACE.
  12. Making amendments to ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS in a future edition, as required.

Coding queries, referred to as national Coding Rules in ACE, are generally published quarterly synchronously with the publication of errata to ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS. National Coding Rules should be implemented for separations from the first day of the following month. For example, national Coding Rules published on 15 June take effect for separations from 1 July. Episodes of care occurring prior to this should not be retrospectively recoded to implement the national Coding Rules.

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