Every industry has its unique jargon and acronyms. Business people are used to it. But what if whenever you wrote an email you were forced to communicate with unfamiliar codes instead of words?
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This is a daily challenge for doctors who are required to use arcane ICD-10 codes – there are nearly 70,000 of them – when recording their patients’ diagnoses in their clinical notes and charges. Fortunately, every physician doesn’t have to memorize all 70,000 codes; specialists may only use several dozen routinely. More fortunately, technology exists that allows physicians to use familiar medical terminology in their notes and charges, which the computer then automatically translates into the appropriate codes.
Even so, American office workers should be grateful that their business communications are conducted in English rather than in code.
See previous entries in our “What If” animation series.