With fewer than five months to go until ICD-10 implementation, many healthcare providers and payers have not completed testing their health information management systems. In fact, a number of providers, especially smaller institutions, have not conducted any systematic ICD-10 testing. For all providers and payers who do not feel comfortable with the amount of ICD-10 work done thus far, there is still time to complete meaningful testing. To make the best use of the limited time available, QualiTest recommends using a risk-based testing approach.

Risk-based testing is a technique used across the QA industry. It is an effective testing methodology even when there is a lot of time to spare. Test prioritization is required in all software testing efforts. Even if resources are abundant, there is always more testing that can be done. In the case of ICD-10, risk-based testing is the most effective testing approach there is.

When conducting risk-based testing, the first task necessary is to define high-level test objectives and priorities. Then a master test plan should be created to identify the specific workflows to be tested and the approaches to be used. These workflows represent key business processes. In risk-based testing, the most important and potentially impactful workflows are tested first, then the next most important workflows are tested. Testing from highest priority to lower priority workflows is continued until the time and resources allocated to the testing project are consumed.

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