According to the World Health Organization, ICD-11 is the 11th version of the global disease classification system, including physical and mental illnesses. The ICD-11 is an updated version of the ICD-10 and the first revision to be created and released in twenty years.

Post coordination is a new ICD-11 feature that enables the connection of two or more codes to form a cluster that more fully explains a clinical notion. Post-coordination users can code a clinical concept to the highest level of specificity as recorded by the healthcare professional to report morbidity.

WHO’s coding system needs continuous updates as new medical diagnoses and therapies become available. The difficulties of medical coding will increase dramatically as a result of ICD-11. Comparatively, ICD-11 includes about 40,000 codes, while ICD-10 only had about 10,000.

ICD-11 additions

The ICD-11 has been modified to fill in any holes left by the ICD-10 and to consider recent advancements in medicine and ideological changes. In terms of classification and coding structure, worldwide application, digital readiness, and user-friendliness, the new ICD underwent significant alterations.

Structure of Coding

The ICD-11 has a more complex framework than the ICD-10 regarding overall advancements. The ICD-11 provides excellent information when categorizing diseases, disorders, injuries, and reasons for death with its approximately 55,000 codes.

Note: The new ICD has a simplified coding structure that makes an accurate recording of a wide range of disorders much simpler.

Universal Applicability

The ICD-11 provides translations into 43 languages and instructions for using it in diverse cultural contexts. As a result, the updated system offers a universal coding language that academics and healthcare practitioners may use to compare and interpret data from different countries.

Usage-flexible and digitally adaptive

For usage by a worldwide audience, the new ICD-11 was created to be computerized and user-friendly. It operates on a centralized platform and can communicate with any application. Because it may be written in a machine-readable manner, its applications in the digital world are broader.

Dimensional Methodology

The latest version of ICD maintains a dimensional approach, one of its significant enhancements. It will facilitate a faster recovery from illness and is compatible with the study’s evidence.

This dimensional approach also lessens fake comorbidity when a person is given more than one diagnosis when all symptoms are signs of the same illness. The new system has two chapters and a set of categories to support this dimensional approach.

ICD-11 Post coordination

The capability to post-coordinate codes is one of ICD-11’s significant advantages over ICD-10. Users can link stem code concepts, the fundamental diagnostic ideas, to additional information in extension codes. A cluster, which always starts with a stem code, is a collection of related regulations.

Extensions are additional, non-diagnostic codes that can be used to broaden the scope of the classification. They can’t be used alone; instead, they are meant to be added to a stem code, replacing ICD-10 adjunct codes.

Extension codes are added to represent the sharpness, severity, and other aspects of an injury and its external causes. Cluster coding occurs when combining two or more codes to describe a documented clinical concept. ICD-11 uses cluster coding to show post-coordinated codes to represent a single condition.

Clustering allows diagnostic statements to be linked in the coded record when split into component pieces for clarity.

The AAPC, the leading education and certification organization for medical coders and billers in the United States, explains it as follows:

Cluster coding is a method of organizing diagnostic “sentences” from individual ICD-011 codes by linking them together with the “with” operator (a forward slash or ampersand).

For instance:

Diagnosis: lesion of the duodenum with severe bleeding

The cluster is DA63/ME24.90/XA9780.

  • The underlying medical diagnosis (Stem Code) for duodenal ulcers is DA63.
  • Acute gastrointestinal bleeding, stem code ME24.90, with no other known manifestations
  • XA9780 Duodenum is a code for a specific part of the body.

Conventions for post coordination

When post-coordination is present, the following two conventions are used to divide the codes into a cluster:

  1. A primary stem code is always separated from other stem codes by a forward slash (/) when two or more stem codes are chosen to form a cluster.
    • Breast cancer family history or having invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast as an example
  • 3/2C61.0 as a cluster
  • Explanation of codes
  • 3 Individual history of aggressive breast tumor (Stem code)
  • 0 Breast cancer that has spread to the ducts and is invasive (Stem code)
  1. Ampersands (&) are always used to connect extension codes to stem codes or to connect extension codes in a cluster.

Ampersands always come before extension codes in a cluster since they can only be used with a stem code. Extension codes can be linked together in clusters of more than one.

  • Case: Left ear contusion following a tumble downstairs in a house
  • Cluster: XK8G, XJ9NV, PG50, XE3HC, and XE266
  • Explanation of codes
  • 2 Ear damage that is superficial (Stem code)
  • Left laterality: XK8G (Extension code)
  • XJ9NV Contusion is the type of injury (Extension code)
  • Connected to: PG50 Unintentional fall or jump from the same height or less than one meter
  • XE3H Stairs, step; an object or substance inflicting harm (Extension code)
  • The location of XE266 at home (Extension code)

ICD-11: How it may impact medical coding and billing

Add Additional Diseases and Conditions

ICD-11 has substantially increased the number of diagnoses, from 14,000 to over 55,000 distinct codes. The addition includes conditions, not in ICD-10, so medical providers and billers can be more specific and accurate in their entries. ICD-11 has 26 chapters—5 more than ICD-10. New sections cover blood-related ailments, immune system abnormalities, sleep-wake disorders, and traditional medicine.

Acquire More Detail and Flexibility

Implementing the new ICD-11 classification will allow medical coders to characterize patient conditions more precisely. Even though they still have to choose an “unspecified” code. A greater degree of flexibility in diagnostic categories is made possible by the alphanumeric coding scheme. Also, they have been modified to better conform to the scientific results and meet medical research demands.

Foster the Use of New Technology

ICD-11 streamlines operations and improves operational efficiency in healthcare institutions. It is created as a database and accessible as a web platform rather than a static publication to promote the use of electronic health records (EHRs).

The ICD-11 software has an advanced search function. For instance, clinicians can search for diagnoses using their preferred or native terminology. After it matches it with the appropriate technical code, the system will do so automatically. This improves the correctness of the coding process while streamlining procedures.


As a result of ICD-11’s enhanced system and technological integration, medical coders and billers will be able to do their duties more precisely and efficiently. The increased complexity of the new version necessitates that database navigation and precise coding require significantly more experience and expertise.



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