Friday, November 14, 2014

F32: New Windows Reference Platform

Between F31 and F32, Windows XP ceased to be supported. In order to keep our customer's data safe and to keep our systems up-to-date, we retired all of our XP boxes. Since our previous windows reference platform was a 32-bit Windows XP desktop, we had to retire it as well.

Our new Windows reference platform is a 64-bit Windows 7 environment running on a 64-bit processor.

To ensure backwards compatibility, we have included a 32-bit Windows 7 environment in our testing group.

To the best of our knowledge, there is no issue here but please let us know if we are wrong about that.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

F32 New ICD9 Codes

To quote the official CMS site (,

There are no new ICD-9-CM code updates effective October 1, 2014.

F32 Support

This year's release has not gone well. It should be ready first thing tomorrow, Thursday, November 13, 2014, which is the latest we have ever released a grouper, and there is a known issue with the release (we are confident that the known issue will not matter to any of our customers, but we feel the need to document it none the less.)

First, we had to dust off our ICD9 technology which we had expected to have retired by now. Many aspects of this technology are different and out of date and resurrecting the development environment was more challenging than we had expected.

Then our lead engineer ended up in the hospital for a week just before our big release push, which has us scrambling do to the release. This caused the initial delay.

Finally, after the programming was done, our QA testing turned up the following issue: while our DRG Assignment Engine (DAE) returns the correct DRG in all test cases, sometimes it does not return the expected error code.

Specifically, our DAE does not distinguish shares of Hospital Acquired Condition (HAC) errors; it returns 9 when sometimes the CMS grouper returns 9, 11 or 15. So if you need to know more precisely how the HAC rules were violated, we currently cannot help you.

(If we discover from customer feedback that we are wrong and these distinctions matter, we will do a release to replicate the CMS error handling.)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Valid Discharge Status Values

We are often asked what the list of valid discharge status values is. Here is a link to a PDF from CMS which answers that question as of March 6th, 2014:

Discharge Status List

Monday, August 18, 2014

Data Needed To Assign a DRG

We are often asked what fields we need to assign a CMS (US Federal) DRG.

We need the following fields to assign a CMS DRG to an inpatient encounter:
  1. The list of diagnoses, with the Primary diagnosis as the first code.
  2. The list of procedures, if any.
  3. The patient's age-on-admission
  4. The patient's sex (Male, Female, Other, Unknown)
  5. The patient's discharge status (use zero for "Unknown" and 20 for expired)
    1. Home
    2. Other Hospital
    3. Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)
    4. Intensive Care Facility (ICF)
    5. Other Institution (eg nursing home)
    6. Home Care (VNA, etc)
    7. Against Medical Advice (AMA)
And that is all that is needed.


  • Using age-on-discharge usually returns a valid DRG.
  • For our DRG Assignment Service...
    • we usually want an encounter ID against which to return the DRG.
    • We are happy to calculate the age-on-admission from a date of birth and an admission date.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

What Happened To Your Website?

We are having administrative trouble with our domain registrar, so our primary URL is not working at the moment. Our secondary URL is active, however:

This should take you to the same content.

We are not out of business, nor are we blissfully unaware. We are working on the issue, but not getting much cooperation from the other side.