The AAOS Registries Have Begun Collecting Data on the COVID-19 Diagnosis

How will the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) affect musculoskeletal care? Unexpected reactions, such as venous thromboembolism, rhabdomyolysis, and secondary infections, have been observed in some recovering patients. Will these complications of the disease – and others possibly still to emerge – make patient care more challenging in the years to come?

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) wants to find out, and so effective immediately, the 4 AAOS registries are collecting COVID-19 data through the capture of the ICD-10 code for a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis, U07.1.

The new code has been enabled across the registries, including the American Joint Replacement Registry for hip and knee arthroplasty data, the Shoulder & Elbow Registry, the Musculoskeletal Tumor Registry, and the American Spine Registry, which is a collaboration between AAOS and the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and the AAOS.

These registries contain information on nearly 2 million orthopaedic procedures. Collecting data on COVID-19 will provide additional insights into the care of orthopaedic patients who have been infected, according to AAOS. Tracking these data will help providers and institutions analyze the short- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on clinical outcomes, trends in surgery based on the pause in elective procedures, and trends in patient-reported outcomes due to delayed surgeries.

Hospitals, health care systems, practice groups, and ambulatory surgery centers already participating in the registries will not need to join a new registry or engage in a new way to submit their data. Capturing the COVID-19 ICD-10 code will not change the site’s workflow since it was added as an accepted value for the existing diagnosis or comorbidity code files. The ICD-10 code can be submitted as a preoperative comorbidity or prior diagnosis present on admission and as a reason for readmission.

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