2019 ACDIS Conference

Bookmark and Share

2019 ACDIS Conference

Product Code: CDI--

Regular Rate - Early Bird Discount: Ends April 5, 2019!

* Required Fields

Availability: In stock

From: $950.00

To: $2,186.65

Your Price:

Add Items to Cart

ACDIS Members save $100!
Call Customer Service at 615-724-7200 to receive your Exclusive Member Discount.

Register five attendees for the price of four!
Your discount will automatically appear in your cart when you register your Team of Five.

12th Annual Association of Clinical Documentation Improvement Specialists (ACDIS) Conference

Registration is now open for our 12th annual conference, to be held May 20-23 at the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee, FL.

The annual ACDIS Conference features unparalleled networking, the ACDIS Achievement Awards, and six concurrent educational tracks with a diverse range of sessions, covering best practices for staff management, physician engagement, clinically focused chart reviews, and critical regulatory updates to improve every aspect of your CDI department.

Base conference pricing includes a ticket to attend our opening night reception in the exhibit hall on May 20, as well as breakfast on all three days, lunch on days 1 and 2, and snacks and beverages throughout.


  • CDI specialists 
  • CDI managers/directors 
  • HIM directors 
  • Case management directors/managers 
  • Revenue cycle directors 
  • Physician champions/advisors to CDI 
  • Quality improvement professionals 
  • Coding compliance specialists 
  • DRG coordinators 
  • Inpatient coders 
  • Coding managers/supervisors 
  • Chief medical officers 
  • Denials and appeals managers


Healthcare is changing rapidly and the CDI profession is evolving along with it. Don’t be left without a roadmap or a clear direction—attend the 12th annual ACDIS conference and learn how your peers and professional association are “Charting the Course” for the CDI of tomorrow.

Attendees of the 12th annual ACDIS conference will:

  • Have the opportunity to attend six concurrent tracks of education. There is something for everyone, every minute
  • Network with more than 1,500 of their CDI peers and more than 50 exhibitors over three days. Breakfast, lunch, and kickoff reception cocktails included!
  • Hear from inspiring keynotes and general session speakers, from a physician who administered first aid at the Boston Marathon bombing, to OIG representatives explaining the ins and outs of the Work Plan
  • Learn the latest techniques and clinical cues to deepen chart reviews for conditions such as malnutrition, sepsis, metastatic cancer, and the 4th Universal Definition of MI
  • Understand how CDI review efforts impact quality outcomes and social determinants of health at an achievable, understandable level—and take action to make measurable impacts in their own organization
  • Lead changes and engage physicians in their own organizations with a new and inspiring Management and Professional Development Track, featuring sessions on women in leadership, and improving your presentation and speaking skills
  • Enjoy a world-class facility at the Gaylord Palms Resort, located just minutes from Walt Disney World and other attractions

Photography Disclaimer 

From time to time, ACDIS or its contractors record, photograph, and/or stream the various aspects and activities of the ACDIS Conference for both archival and promotional purposes. By attending the ACDIS Conference, attendees give ACDIS and its contractors permission to use any attendee’s voice and image in any such archival or promotional recording, photograph, or streaming activity without any compensation or credit to the attendee.


Sunday, May 19 – Monday, May 20, 2019  |  Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee, FL

Save 15% on the following pre-cons with your 2019 ACDIS Conference registration!

The Physician Advisor’s Role in CDI Boot Camp

  • Retail price: $1,349.00
  • Discounted price: $1,146.65

Our most popular pre-conference event returns for its eighth straight year, with all new content delivered by some of the best physician advisors and educators in the country. On day 1 attendees receive a heavy dose of critical coding, clinical, and regulatory updates by regulatory guru James Kennedy, MD, followed by a denials workshop by Trey LaCharite, MD, featuring effective appeals and denials prevention strategies. New this year is a hands-on, small group workshop reviewing actual denied cases. For more information, click here.

Beyond Hospital Walls: CDI Expansion Across the Health System

  • Retail price: $1,149.00
  • Discounted price: $976.65

This one-of-a-kind pre-conference takes a deep dive into CDI’s role across the care continuum, as well as risk adjusted payment methodologies and CMS quality programs including Hospital Value Based Purchasing, the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program, Bundled Payments for Care Improvement-Advanced, and the Hospital Acquired Condition Reduction Program. This two-day session covers far more than just theory: Expert presenters review concrete ways in which CDI specialists can make an impact, including must-know coding guidelines and how to implement a risk adjustment approach to your existing CDI department. For more information, click here.

CDI Management Essentials

  • Retail price: $1,149.00
  • Discounted price: $976.65

The CDI Management Essentials pre-conference event will help you learn the skills to become a better manager, improve hospital and department performance, and increase the satisfaction and retention of your valuable CDI staff reviewers.

CDI Management Essentials includes a blend of instruction by CDI Boot Camp educators who have managed successful CDI departments in the past, and bring best practices coalesced from organizations around the nation. You’ll also hear from two case studies from the trenches, straight from the directors of two high-performing CDI programs at Novant Health and OhioHealth. For more information, click here.

Speakers and agendas to be posted shortly, call
615-724-7200 for more information!

Conference Tracks

One Incredible Conference, Six Educational Tracks!

Track 1: Clinical & Coding:
The much-loved Clinical & Coding track is one of the most-well attended at the annual ACDIS conference. Session speakers provide insight into both the clinical and coding nuances which serve as the bedrock of CDI specialists’ daily duties of concurrent record review. This track also features sessions exploring key coding and documentation regulations.

Track 2: Management & Professional Development:
In the early years of the CDI profession, staff members were often left to their own devices to “figure out” CDI and develop program policies, procedures, and best practices. Today, facilities often employ directors, managers, and create career ladders for their staff. This track focuses on concerns pertaining to program management and individual professional development, so attendees can make the most of their programs and their careers.

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory:
As the largest payer of healthcare services, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services consistently adjusts its documentation and payment requirements to ensure its fiduciary duties to the American taxpayer while maintaining the highest quality care possible for its citizenry. CDI professionals need to stay informed about the ongoing shifts in quality reporting measures to understand how documentation improvement efforts may affect the data used for a host of various quality measures. In this track, CDI professionals will learn about coding and reporting requirements, advanced efforts in quality and cross-departmental collaboration, as well as ethical considerations to keep staff on the right side of compliance.

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion:
CDI programs continue to find ways to help their facilities target trouble spots and improve outcomes through focused documentation improvement and physician education. In this track, attendees will explore cutting edge advancements such as concurrent coding, second-level chart reviews, data analytics, remote CDI, and more.

Track 5: Idea Laboratory:
The presentation submissions for the 2019 conference included a number of innovative ideas describing ways clinical documentation improvement programs are branching out, collaborating with other departments, conducting academic research, and searching for ways to better capture patient severity beyond hospital walls. ACDIS devotes Track 5 to these sessions combining speakers on similar topics to ensure attendees get a wide-range of viewpoints on cutting-edge CDI ideas.

Program note: Some of the Track 5 time blocks include two 30-minute sessions rather than a single hour-long session. Attendees are expected to attend both 30-minute sessions within a time block to qualify for continuing education credits.

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric:
NEW! As the world of CDI continues to expand into distinct settings, ACDIS devotes this educational track to two specific area of expansion—outpatient and pediatric endeavors. Whether charged with expanding your CDI efforts from the traditional inpatient setting to hospital-owned outpatient services or system-wide physician practice settings, this track offers attendees a glimpse into how to rise to the challenges related outpatient record reviews. Similarly, children’s hospitals and hospital-owned pediatric centers will learn valuable tips for embarking on these reviews and for enhancing their existing programs.

Monday, May 20

2:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: Pre-Registration

5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: Welcome Reception in Exhibit Hall


Day 1 — Tuesday, May 21

7:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.: Opening Remarks and ACDIS Update - Brian Murphy, ACDIS Director

8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.: Keynote session: “Running Toward Chaos” - Natalie Stavas, MD


9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding (XXXXX Ballroom) - Allen R. Frady, RN, BSN, CCS, CRC, CCDS, & Faisal Hussain, MD, CCDS, CDIP, CCS, present “Navigating Documentation and Coding Regulations in Search of Clinical Accuracy.” Explore the more controversial and confusing aspects of regulations governing code assignment and CDI reviews as the speakers review common roadblocks to accurate reporting. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development (XXXXX Ballroom) - Elizabeth Petersen presents “Panel Discussion: Women in Leadership.” During this presentation, Simplify Compliance’s head of professional development leads an inspiring discussion of CDI thought leaders on effective management skills and career building. [BASIC]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory (XXXXX Ballroom) - Erin Head, MBA, RHIA, CHDA, CHTS-TR, presents “CDI and Quality: Sharing Knowledge and Working Together to Improve Patient Outcomes” Concurrent reviews and timely abstraction of data are critical to improving patient outcomes. This presentation will discuss the integration of CDI professionals into quality department efforts to track Patient Safety Indicators, regulatory compliance, and quality data measures. [BASIC]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion (XXXXX Ballroom)- James P. Fee, MD, CCS, CCDS, presents “Let’s Get Real: Does CDI Improve Patient Care?” This presentation will demonstrate the course of the CDI profession in tackling quality, risk adjustment, and utilization. Through a mosaic of case study examples, attendees will learn how CDI contributes to improving the “Triple Aim” of advancing healthcare—improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction); improving the health of populations; and reducing the per capita expense of patient care. [BASIC]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory (XXXXX Ballroom) - Vaughn M. Matacale, MD, CCDS presents “Clinical Validation: Do We or Don’t We?” If attendees are questioning if, why, or how clinical validation should be done, join this session’s speaker to explore current views by reviewing published guidance and exploring potential methods to organize and formalize a clinical validation process for your organization. Review clinical validation denial examples and learn the top five diagnoses to focus on and the clinical definitions to use. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric (XXXXX Ballroom) - Kimberly Charles, CPC, CPCO, CPMA, CEMC, presents “Documenting Evaluation and Management Services.” During this presentation, participants will learn how to identify the overarching criteria for physician evaluation and management (E/M) services coding. Attendees will review guidelines for addressing the chief complaint, medical decision-making, and other items necessary for physicians to complete their own professional billing. [BASIC]


10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.: Networking Break


11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding  - James S. Kennedy, MD, CCS, CDIP, CCDS, presents “CDI-Pertinent Coding Clinic Updates.” Anyone invested in CDI must be familiar with ICD-10-CM/PCS coding conventions, particularly official advice from the American Hospital Association’s Coding Clinic for ICD-10- CM/PCS. This lecture outlines ICD-10-CM/PCS coding fundamentals and recent advice that promotes the CDI professional’s relationships with coding, and advocates coding compliance. [BASIC]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Staci L. Josten, RN, BSN, CCDS, & Tara Bell, MSN, RN, CCDS, CCM, present “Creating and Retaining the Best CDI Team.” During this session, participants will learn what makes a good leader and how to further develop an effective CDI team. Attendees will obtain practical tips on selecting the best CDI candidates, establishing a productive orientation, keeping CDI rock stars happy, and dealing with difficult staff. [ADVANCED]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Sam Antonios, MD, MMM, FACP, SFHM, CPE, CCDS, presents “CDI Impacts Quality: But How?” This session will provide the basic explanation for quality measurements in hospitals under the various Medicare programs. Follow a step-by-step approach to understand how documentation affects quality measurement and what resources are available to understand this somewhat ambiguous relationship to many CDI professionals. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Lee Anne Landon, BSN, RN, CCMC, CCDS, & Mary Elizabeth (M.E.) VanGelder, MREd, BSN, RN, CCDS, RHIT present “How to Win Friends and Enhance Learning via a CDI Educator Role.” Attendees will gain an understanding of the need for a CDI educator within the organizational structure as a critical element of overall program growth and how to make the business case for such positions. [ADVANCED]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory

  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.: Amy Sanderson, MD, & Corinna McFarland Foley, MBA, present “Looking Beyond Reimbursement & Severity: Setting Your Sights on Academic Research.” Have you ever thought about using research to uncover trends within your institution? Do you want to better understand how to apply those findings to educational and operational opportunities? These presenters will highlight research projects undertaken by every member of the CDI team at their institution. Come hear concrete steps on how to take your department in this exciting new direction. [ADVANCED]
  • 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Howard Rodenberg, MD, MPH, CCDS, presents “Research as the Future of CDI.” It’s been said that the only constant is change, and the CDI world is no exception. In this session, attendees will learn how to use claims data research to demonstrate increased value to the institution. Following a brief discussion of research, four sample projects will be described: A model to verify a secondary diagnosis; a means to test for potential CCs; an evaluation of the impact of new clinical definitions; and an interdepartmental effort to decrease length of stay. [ADVANCED]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Barbi Kantner, RN, CCDS, & Lori LaFaver, RN, BSN, CCDS, present “Partnering With the Emergency Department.” This presentation will review lessons learned for concurrent CDI reviews of the emergency department, including ideas for how to engage resistant providers and engaging the coding team in the process. [BASIC]


12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.: Lunch in the Exhibit Hall


1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Charlene Compher, RD, CNSC, LDN, & Richard D. Pinson, MD, FACP, CCS, present “GLIM: The New Malnutrition Clinical Criteria and Implications for the CDI Profession.” Come hear from one of the co-authors of the new global malnutrition criteria about the impetus behind the most recent consensus statement. Then listen as CDI expert Richard Pinson, MD, co-author of the CDI Pocket Guide, adds his CDI perspective and offers take-home tips for query efficiency. [ADVANCED]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Robin Ann Jones, RN, BSN, MHA/Ed, CCDS, & Kimberly Higgins, RN, BSN, CCDS, present “Work in Progress: Revitalizing a CDI Program.” Attendees will obtain foundational insight into how to spark enthusiasm and effect change to build a team focused on innovative new CDI concepts and program growth. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Mary Elizabeth (M.E.) VanGelder, MREd, BSN, RN, CCDS, RHIT & Elisa H. Sninchak, RN, BSN, CCDS, CDIP, presents “Value-Based Healthcare and the Role of the CDI Educator.” Participants will obtain the latest information related to the value-based payment initiatives, how CDI efforts can help improve these measures, and how to best educate physicians, CDI, and coding staff to ensure optimal results and compliance. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Brian Ice, RHIT, CRCS & Linda Danhires, BSN, CCDS, COC, present “Using Data to Drive Program Success.” Attendees will be able to understand how to prove the relevancy of CDI through leveraging data, chart reviews, physician-to-physician training, and physician champions. Attendees will be guided through a sample action plan for identifying specific opportunities to improve documentation and how to assess the benefits, challenges, and key components of a CDI transformation initiative. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory

  • 1:45 p.m.  – 2:15 p.m.: Deanne Wilk, RN, BSN, CCDS, CCS, presents “CDI and the Effect on Population Health Through Social Determinants.” This presentation will discuss the role of CDI in population health social determinants and the organizational impact it can have on quality outcomes, patient satisfaction, and public reporting. [INTERMEDIATE]
  • 2:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.: Cassi L. Birnbaum, MS, RHIA, CPHQ, FAHIMA, presents “Enterprise Documentation and Coding Strategies to Improve in Population Health.” Learn how to redesign the coding and documentation enterprise to create a holistic, singular approach to improve HCC risk adjustment coding, enterprise charge capture, quality, and medical necessity edits. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Julian Everett, RN, CDIP, & Lauren B. Shivers, MSHI, RN, CPC, present “Where Do I Start? Beginning a Pediatric Mortality Review Process,” and Julian Everett, RN, CDIP, presents “Neonatal Mortality Reviews.” This presentation will provide insight into the need for mortality review in the pediatric population based on low severity and risk scores, as well how to develop a mortality review process and obtain support from administration and staff. [INTERMEDIATE]


2:45 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.: Networking Break


3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Trey La Charité, MD, FACP, SFHM, CCS, CCDS, presents “CDI for the Medical Subspecialties: What You, and They, Need to Know.” Attendees will gain an understanding of how medical subspecialists’ documentation affects an institution’s revenue cycle and publicly reported quality data. This presentation will review the most common opportunities and reveal techniques to successfully encourage physicians to adapt to CDI program goals. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - William Haik, MD, FCCP, CDIP, & Laurie L. Prescott, RN, MSN, CCDS, CDIP, CRC, present “Query Compliance: Addressing Changes in the 2019 ACDIS/AHIMA Physician Query Practice Guidance.” During this session, attendees will hear from two industry experts who served on the committee creating the latest ACDIS/AHIMA physician query practice guidelines. Participants will learn what’s changed since 2016 and how to address compliance concerns related to the query process. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Jon Elion, MD, FACC, & Jerry Williamson, MD, MJ, CHC, LHRM, presents “Ethical Practices and Compliance in CDI: Staying on the Right Side of the Healthcare False Claims Act.” Session participants will obtain a brief review of the ACDIS Code of Ethics and then delve into a deep examination of the principles that drive effective compliance programs, including a primer on the False Claims Act and the Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Donald A. Butler, RN, BSN, presents “Frequent CCs & MCCs: Clinical indicators, Cautions, & Benchmarking Opportunities.” Knowledge drawn from data analysis is a powerful tool to help CDI programs identify the most likely opportunities. However, in this increasingly complex environment of CDI practice, it is equally imperative to understand those areas that need to be approached with a higher level of care. Participants will learn data-driven tactics to improve the foundation of their CDI programs. [ADVANCED]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Susan Lynne Fantin, MSA, BSN, RN, CCDS, CDIP, & Shawn M. MacPhee, MSN, RN, CCDS, CDIP, present “Clinical Validation Across a Healthcare System.” This session features how McLaren Health Care standardized clinical validation into a multidisciplinary team approach, including physicians, quality, coding, clinical documentation, and finance members. Presenters will share methodology, outcomes, and challenges faced by the team. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Sheilah J. Snyder, MD, FAAP, Lucinda Lo, MD, Wendy Arafiles, MD, & Amy Sanderson, MD, join for a panel discussion on “What Were They Thinking?!?” a discussion to help attendees understand what other terms providers use and how CDI specialists can help providers start using the appropriate documentation with four physician leaders from four different children’s hospitals. [BASIC]


4:45 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.: General session: “Charting the Course” - Erica E. Remer, MD, FACEP, CCDS

In this general session, CDI professionals will be inspired to stop thinking of daily record reviews in isolation and shift their focus to consider the medical record in its totality—to tell the whole story of the patient’s encounter. Attendees will obtain tools to enable physicians to engage with CDI program efforts and to accomplish overarching goals supporting a more meaningful CDI mission.


Day 2 — Wednesday, May 22

7:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.: Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.: ACDIS Achievement Awards Presentation

8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.: General session: “OIG Work Plan and Current Initiatives” - Truman Mayfield, CPA, CFE, and Scott Perry, CPA


9:45 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Rhoda Chism, BSN, RN, CCDS, & Laura White, MHA, present “Untangling the Sepsis Web: Surviving Sepsis in 2019.” During this presentation, attendees will learn about payer and regulatory governance related to sepsis clinical definitions and code assignment. Take home a blueprint to build or enhance a hospital sepsis pathway and effectively align the goals of CDI, coding, and quality outcomes. [ADVANCED]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Nicole F. Draper, RN, BN, MHA, PhD candidate, presents “CDI Physician Engagement: The Alchemy of Transforming Documentation Lead to Gold.” Join colleagues in an exploration of common physician education pitfalls through interactive role-playing sessions to uncover tools to interact with physicians and provide succinct information about CDI program values. [BASIC]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Kathryn DeVault, MSL, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P, FAHIMA, presents “ICD-10-CM/PCS Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting: Review and Application.” As clinical documentation specialists, a thorough knowledge of the Official Guidelines for Coding and Reporting is critical in documentation accuracy and accurate code assignment. This session will include review of both ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS guidelines, especially those most pertinent to clinical documentation specialists. [BASIC]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Stephanie L. Jensen, BSN, RN, & Melanie Reineke, CCS, CPC, present “Help Me Help You: CDI and Inpatient Concurrent Coding.” Nebraska Medicine’s concurrent coding process provided inpatient coding and CDI teams the ability to align individual strengths while collaborating on shared goals. Concurrent coding facilitates the opportunity for inpatient coders to develop the working DRG while patients are still admitted and allows the CDI team to focus on clinical validation and accurate patient documentation through provider queries and education. [ADVANCED]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Ailsa S. Henley, RN, MHA, CCDS, CRCR, presents “Do You Speak CFO?” During this session, attendees will gain an understanding of how CDI fits in the revenue cycle as well as how to effectively interpret and communicate the metrics associated with your CDI program to administration leaders. [BASIC]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Marietta L. Morhardt, RN, BSN, CPN, CCM, & Pam McCall, BSN, CCM, CPN, presents “The Pediatric Altered Brain.” This presentation will cover the various conditions, syndromes, symptomology, and potential sequelae that involve disorders in the pediatric brain, including with anatomical differences, specifics of genetic diseases, encephalopathies, brain trauma, and the developmental consequences from those. Coding Clinic will be highlighted, and differences in SOI/ROM when all neurological issues are/are not appropriately documented will be discussed. [ADVANCED]


10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.: Networking Break


11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Richard D. Pinson, MD, FACP, CCS, presents “The Whys and Wherefores of ATN.” During this presentation, participants will learn how acute tubular necrosis (ATN) represents an elusive and commonly misinterpreted diagnosis. Come and review clinical scenarios and query examples to handle this evolution in ATN’s diagnostic criteria. [BASIC]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Erica E. Remer, MD, FACEP, CCDS, presents “CDI on the Fly: How to Round With Providers.” Come hear the tangible benefits of face-to-face interactions with providers to reinvigorate CDI efforts by rounding with providers, querying, and educating on the fly. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Timothy Brundage, MD, CCDS, and Mary Beth Bumbarger, RHIA, CCS, CHDA, present “HACs and PSIs: What’s All the Confusion About?” Session attendees will gain a basic understanding of the data capture for hospital-acquired conditions, infections, and Patient Safety Indicators. With the assistance of case examples, attendees will gain an understanding of how provider documentation affects these measures. [BASIC]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Megan H. Cortazzo, MD, presents “End the CDI Silo: How Collaborative Programs Improve Revenue, Quality, and Physician Engagement.” Success hinges on developing strong and collaborative relationships within the hospital system. No matter where your organization is currently with respect to the development of your CDI program, this session will provide insight into key stakeholders, relationships, and processes that could enhance the program you already have. [BASIC]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory

  • 11:30am – 12:00 p.m.: Sommer Slavin, RN, MS, MBA, CCDS, presents “CDI as an Integral Part of the Revenue Cycle.” During this session, attendees will learn how utilization management plays a role in concurrent coding, how to develop service-level documentation guidelines, and interdepartmental collaboration. [BASIC]
  • 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Patricia Henry, RN, MSN, CCS, CCDS, & Maryellen McGowan, MS, RHIA, CPC, present “Performance Improvement in  the Revenue Cycle Through Data Analytics.” CDI staff no longer work in silos. It takes an army to run a finance department, and a working understanding of the revenue cycle is essential. In this session, speakers will explore how they partnered with quality and incorporated performance improvement projects into patient financial services as an outgrowth of CDI efforts. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Karen Bridgeman, MSN, RN, CCDS, presents “It’s A Small World: Pediatric Malnutrition & Respiratory Failure.” This session will focus on the unique clinical indicators for malnutrition and respiratory failure in the pediatric and neonatal population. Participants will review compliant queries and develop strategies for physician engagement. [BASIC]


12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.: Lunch in the Exhibit Hall


1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Laurie L. Prescott, RN, MSN, CCDS, CDIP, CRC, presents “Psych Me Out.” Psychiatric and intellectual disabilities are often overlooked in the inpatient setting unless the patient is admitted for psychiatric care. CDI specialists in both the inpatient and outpatient settings need to obtain the appropriate documentation as these diagnoses affect DRG assignment and patient risk scores. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Alison Leigh Bowlick, BSN, CCDS, CRCR, and Kathryn Vermillion, MSN, RN, CCDS, CDIP, CRCR, present “CDI Convergence, A Panel Discussion: The Integration of Two Large Healthcare Systems and the Impact on CDI Efforts.” Join CDI leaders from two large healthcare systems— Bon Secours and Mercy Health—as they explore the challenges and opportunities of bringing together documentation staff and standardizing CDI processes across 29 facilities in more than five states. [ADVANCED]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory (XXXXX Ballroom) - Joe Lintz, RN, BSN, BS, CCDS, and Beth Wolf, MD, CCDS, CPC, present “Surgical Quality Databases: What to Do When Clinical Definitions Vary.” Ever wonder why surgeons disagree with your interpretation of clinical indicators? In this session, participants will review the thoracic, general, and vascular surgical quality initiative program definitions for common conditions and develop strategies to overcome documentation capture differences while remaining true to the clinical picture, representing severity and risk in the abstracted as well as the codified health data sets. [ADVANCED]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Karen D. Elmore, RN, BSN, CCDS, & Julie Weiss, RN, CCDS, CCS, CRC, present “Second- Level Chart Reviews: Advanced Models for Finding Chart Review Gems.” Come and learn how to add sparkle to your program by providing a second look at the records prior to the record being billed. Learn ways to advance to the next level in record review with the addition of a pre-bill record review process. Bring the shine back to your program by binding the essential elements of the record: quality, validity, support, and continuity. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Shirlivia M. Parker, MHA, RHIA, CDIP, Kimberly Huff, BA, CPC-H, CCDS, & Christopher Zepeda, MHA, BS, CPC, present “I’m in Denial: CDI’s New Role in Denials Management.” Is your CDI team being asked to assist with complex clinical validation denials and you don’t know where to start? This presentation will share how Providence St. Joseph Health’s CDI program became involved in complex clinical validation denials—from identifying the type of denial, to developing a process with revenue cycle and identifying key individuals to be involved in the appeal process. This session will provide attendees with tactics to avoid denials, sample processes and templates to help in the appeals process, and tips to ensure your CDI program is on the path to payer partnership and proper denial management. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - James M. Taylor, MD, FAAFP, CRC, presents “HCC Outpatient Documentation: Strategies for Getting to 95%+ Accuracy in Supporting Documentation.” Attendees will learn strategies for physician buy-in, embedding CDI into the physician culture, and experiences of working CDI into both a large (1,000 physician) group as well as a small (50 physician) group practice. [INTERMEDIATE]


2:45 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.: Networking Break


3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - James S. Kennedy, MD, CCS, CDIP, CCDS, presents “CDI Conundrums: Altered Mental Status.” Participants will hear how the underlying causes of altered mental status challenge CDI principles requiring subject matter expertise and finesse in advocating ICD-10-CM documentation and coding compliance. Learn fundamentals on clinical and coding principles inherent to these terms and how CMS determined that G93.40, Unspecified encephalopathy, would be taken off the MCC list. [BASIC]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Fran Jurcak, MSN, RN, CCDS, presents “Performance Review for CDI Professionals.” Using CDI program dashboard metrics is a great way to communicate outcomes. This session explores how implementing a standardized review process can validate the integrity of the program and assist in the performance review process for staff. Done correctly, it can create a positive environment and increase CDI staff job satisfaction. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Mary Beth Bumbarger, RHIA, CCS, CHDA, and Timothy Brundage, MD, CCDS present “Mortality Measures Optimization: Getting to Know the Data.” Participants will learn how to determine if their hospital’s mortality rates are higher than the national averages, how mortality-related data are used for reporting and adjusted for case mix, and how to improve your observed to expected mortality information through CDI efforts. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Johanne E. Brautigam, RN, BSN, CCDS, Sydni Johnson, RN, BSN, & LeeAnn Cheung- Conaway, RN, CCDS, join together for a “Panel Discussion: Remote CDI” discussing how to get the most from remote programs, working when the lights go out, engaging physicians despite off-site staff, and more. Flexibility in schedules, coupled with education, monitoring, peer-to-peer audits, and clearly defined expectations represent key aspects of remote program success. During this session, speakers will explore their experiences and offer attendees insight into how to implement an effective remote process. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Debbie Worthington, RHIT, CCS, presents “Pearls of Wisdom: Advanced CDI/ Coding Perspectives.” As a CDI specialist, do you ever wonder about some of the ins and outs of coding that don’t seem to make sense? Presented by an auditor who has worked with multiple companies providing auditing and educational services, this session will discuss discharge dispositions and how they impact payment, as well as out-of-the-box thinking about principal and secondary diagnoses. You’ll also learn about clinical validation and why it’s important to documentation, as well as where to find new information critical to your role as a CDI professional. [BASIC]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Judy Moreau, RN, MBA, & Andrea J. McLeod Eastwood, RHIA, present “Implementing Outpatient CDI Across the Enterprise.” Attendees will walk away with examples from the Trinity Health CDI strategy and playbook as well as gain an understanding of how to use tools and technology to support outpatient CDI. Attendees will see how Trinity is measuring performance and tracking outpatient CDI metrics and benefit from learning about the challenges, barriers, and successes along the way so that outpatient CDI may not be as unwieldy and daunting as it seems. [INTERMEDIATE]


4:45 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.: General session: “Taking the CCDS/CCDS-O Exam”

Join CCDS Coordinator Penny Richards and panelists from the CCDS Certification Committee for a discussion regarding certification application procedures, eligibility, commonly asked questions regarding exam focus areas, and test-taking tips and strategies.


5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Closing Night Awards Reception

Separate registration required: Tickets must be purchased in advance by Monday, May 20 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $40 per person (if they were not purchased prior to arriving in Kissimmee). Enjoy hors d’oeuvres and two drinks on us to continue to celebrate the ACDIS Achievement Award winners. Attendees of the Closing Night Awards Reception will have a chance to win a free seat to the ACDIS

2020 national conference. (Must be present to win.)


Day 3

7:00 a.m. – 8:00 a.m.: Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.: Closing Keynote: “How to Be the Lion in Your Mirror” - Joe Tye


9:15 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding - Garry L. Huff, MD, CCS, & Christopher M. Huff, MD, FACC, RPVI, present “4th Universal Definition of Myocardial Infarction: New Terms, Updated Definitions, and Alternative Focus Areas for Query Efforts.” Join this father-and-son team of physician clinical coding expert and interventional cardiologist to examine the updated definition of acute myocardial infarction and its effect on documentation, coding, and physician queries. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Tamara A. Hicks, RN, BSN, MHA, CCS, CCDS, ACM-RN, & Melinda Matthews, RN, BSN, MHA, CCDS, CDIP, present “Managing CDI for a Multihospital System.” This informative session will explore how Wake Forest Baptist Health has approached integrating its CDI department throughout its six facilities. This team created useful tools to incorporate the strengths of each of the hospitals’ CDI programs as they became part of the Wake Forest Baptist family, including data-driven audit tools and tiered job descriptions to ensure consistent performance throughout the network. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Kristen Geissler, MS, PT, MBA, CPHQ, presents “Managing the Maze of Public Quality Report Cards.” Leapfrog Safety Grade, CMS Five-Star, U.S. News and World Report, Truven Top 100—there’s a maze of public quality report cards that detail process and outcomes measure performance for hospitals, nursing homes, physicians, and other providers. This session will unlock the mystery behind the measures, data sources, and common themes between these different report cards, as well as help participants understand the different report cards and explore how CDI programs can influence these data and leverage them for physician/administrative buy-in for program expansion. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Nicole Fox, MD, MPH, CPE, presents “Playing Above the Line: Is Your Program Everything It Can Be?” All areas touching documentation need to work in synergy to be fully functional. This session is for any professional who is ready to move the needle on their CDI program but requires tangible, widely applicable methods to do so. Topics covered include physician engagement (beyond the basics, keeping physicians engaged and interested in the program), expanding to point-of-entry CDI, outpatient CDI (managing E/M, HCCs, etc.) and expanding the CDI umbrella to encompass physician advisors, utilization, and the denials process. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Melissa Varnavas joins with members of the ACDIS Local Chapter Advisory Board for a panel discussion on “Challenges for Mentoring and Leadership Transitions.” During this session, attendees will learn how local chapter involvement can help with professional development and obtain techniques for mentoring, training, and transitioning applicable both for chapter volunteers and in day-to-day activities. [BASIC]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Nicole Cuellar, RN, BSN, CCDS, presents “Defending Pediatric Denials in an Adult Denial World.” Insurance denials affect every institution, and defending them is likely a familiar subject. However, this can become more complicated in pediatric populations. Auditors often use adult clinical criteria to establish when a diagnosis is invalid. Participants will learn how to craft a successful rebuttal for a pediatric denial when presented with adult-focused criteria and take home standard ways to defend against denials. [ADVANCED]


10:15 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.: Networking Break


11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.: Breakout Sessions

Track 1: Clinical & Coding- Beth Wolf, MD, CCDS, CPC, presents “Metastatic Cancer: Progression, Complications, and CDI Opportunities.” In this presentation, attendees will learn the science of metastases as well as the clinical impact on organs distant from the primary site. Participants will explore the most common types of cancer and their metastatic preferences as well as how to “read between the lines” and help oncologists fully capture severity and risk. [ADVANCED]

Track 2: Management & Professional Development - Brian Y. Cui, RHIA, CDIP, & Judy Cassety, RN, BSN, CCDS, present “Speak Up! Taking the Leap to Share Your CDI Knowledge.” Participants will learn key tools for effective communication and presentation creation. During this session, attendees will learn the power of creative content and various methods for sharing CDI knowledge. [BASIC]

Track 3: Quality & Regulatory - Krystal Haynes, RHIA, CCS, CDIP, & Holly Saratella, MHA, CDIP, CCS, present “Maneuvering Through the Quality World and Its Impact on Coding and CDI.” In this session, attendees will look at how coding and CDI operations affect various CMS scoring measures and learn how UCHealth in Colorado tackled mortality risk modeling processes, incorporated concurrent Patient Safety Indicator and hospital-acquired condition reviews, and leveraged well-known industry scorecard data to drive improvements across its network of hospitals, clinics, and providers. [BASIC]

Track 4: Innovation & Expansion - Mel Tully, MSN, CCDS, CDIP, & Amy S. Leopard, JD, MS, FHIMSS, present “AI Technology and Clinical Documentation: CDI Compliance at the Crossroads.” As clinical documentation advances across practices and integrates with the EHR and enabling CAPD and AI technologies, new compliance risks arise. In this session, attendees will identify ways in which accelerated EHR and other technologies increase documentation complexity and leave with tools to manage compliance safeguards. [INTERMEDIATE]

Track 5: Idea Laboratory - Barinder K. Gill, CCS, CDIP, CCDS, presents “Improving Documentation in the Intensive Care Burn Unit.” Burn coding is unique in that physicians should be specific in documenting certain parameters of burn patients. Degree of burns, extent of burns (total extent, each degree burn extent), location of burns, and type of burns are information that is vital in the documentation and coding of these patients. Participants will obtain coding and documentation tips for this unique aspect of CDI efforts. [ADVANCED]

Track 6: Outpatient & Pediatric - Brian Murphy and the ACDIS Advisory Board present “Finding CDI’s True North.” This closing panel discussion will evaluate the present state of the CDI industry, including its strengths and limitations, and offer insight and strategies for its necessary evolution. Participants will receive a valuable recap of some of the recent position papers and white papers developed by the board to help make CDI specialists’ jobs more efficient and align with the rapid changes transforming healthcare. [INTERMEDIATE]


12:00 p.m.: Conference Adjourns

ACDIS Day 1 Keynote Speaker

Tuesday, May 21  |  8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

Natalie Stavas, MD"Running Toward Chaos”
Natalie Stavas, MD

On April 15, 2013, Dr. Natalie Stavas approached the finish line of her fifth Boston marathon. Just blocks away she heard explosions, and she ran towards them. Arriving at the scene she went to work administering CPR, applying tourniquets, and triaging the wounded.

What led her to make that fateful decision to run into a terrorist attack? An expert on chaos, Natalie Stavas attacks every obstacle with the same attitude: "You run towards that which you fear, that which challenges you, that which is oppositional." Running toward chaos actually makes chaos more manageable. Attendees of the 2019 ACDIS national conference will learn these lessons first-hand, and how to apply them to their careers and their personal lives.

Following these actions President Barack Obama, Katie Couric, and Anderson Cooper honored Natalie for her role as a first responder. Improper Bostonian magazine named Dr. Stavas one of "Boston's Best" and The Boston Globe awarded her with "2013 Bostonian of the Year”—an honor bestowed upon those that shape the biggest story of the year in a remarkable way.

After the bombings Dr. Stavas increased her efforts in preventing childhood violence and improving the health of urban communities. She is a mentor for Sole Train- a non-profit organization guiding inner-city youth on a path towards their full potential through running. She is also the medical advisor for the Appalachian Mountain Club, helping improve the health of children by getting them outside.

Dr. Stavas' work goes beyond borders- traveling to Haiti throughout the year, she provides medical care to children and helps strengthen the fragile medical infrastructure. A documentary featuring this work as a medical pioneer premiered at the 2014 South by Southwest film festival.

Dr. Stavas has written for multiple outlets including the Huffington Post, the Center for Disease Control, Self Magazine and the Medical Bag. She has been featured in Runners World, The New York Times, LA Times, The Boston Globe, The New Yorker, Time and People Magazine. Described as a healer, educator, and community leader she received the 2012 Change Maker award from The Boston Foundation.

Dr. Natalie Stavas is currently a physician at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Trained and educated at Harvard University, Natalie's area of experience is in childhood trauma, decreasing youth violence and researching how we can better protect and serve high-risk children.

She is pursuing fellowship training in Child Protection pediatrics and obtaining a Masters in Health Science and Public Policy at The University of Pennsylvania. She was recently named the wellbeing/work-life integration specialist for the Department of Pediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Keep an eye out for her upcoming book, Sole to Soul, about the transformative power that running has on high-risk youth, a simple solution to the complicated problem of childhood poverty and violence.

Closing Night Awards Reception

Keep the CDI celebration going at our Closing Night Awards Reception!

Ticket Price: $25.00 (includes two complementary drink tickets and passed hors d'oeuvres)

The annual ACDIS conference is all about education, networking, and honoring excellence in the CDI community. This year at our 12th annual conference we’re keeping the CDI celebration going even longer with an optional Closing Night Awards Reception.

The Closing Night Awards Reception will celebrate the ACDIS Achievement Award winners and the reception takes place on the last full evening of the conference, Wednesday, May 22, 2018 from 5:00 P.M.—6:30 P.M. (shortly after the conclusion of sessions).

Tickets are just $25 and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Your ticket includes two complementary drink tickets and passed hors d'oeuvres. Space is limited, so don’t miss your opportunity to network and relax in a first-class atmosphere with the nation’s most inspiring CDI professionals.

To learn more or to register, please contact customer service at 615-724-7200.


ACDIS Members save $100!
Call Customer Service at 615-724-7200 to receive your Exclusive Member Discount.

Full Pricing Details:

Base Price: $1,050
Early Bird Price: $950.00 — Ends April 5, 2019!

ACDIS Members
Base Price: $950
Early Bird Price: $850.00 — Ends April 5, 2019!

Group Rate (5 at price of 4)
Base Price: $4,200 ($840/person)
Your discount will automatically appear in your cart when you register your Team of Five.

Continuing Education

This program has been approved for 14 continuing education units for use in fulfilling the continuing education requirements of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

Beyond Hospital Walls: CDI Expansion Across the Health System

This program has been approved for 20 continuing education units for use in fulfilling the continuing education requirements of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

Conference Center and Hotel Info

Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention CenterACDIS Conference will be held May 20-23 at:
Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center
6000 West Osceola Parkway
Kissimmee, FL, 34746

Room rate: $205/night
Hotel cut-off date: Monday, April 29, 2019
Toll-Free Reservation Center: 1-407-586-2000 and referring to Event code, ACDIS
Reservations URL: https://book.passkey.com/event/49743061/owner/6738/home

Our resort is just minutes from Walt Disney World® and other attractions for you to discover. ACDIS 2019 attendees will receive special discounted rates to attend some of the following local attractions. To purchase discounted tickets to the Disney parks, click here or call 407-566-5600 by May 19. Stay tuned for additional details!

  • Magic Kingdom Park®
  • Disney's Hollywood Studios®
  • Disney's Animal Kingdom®
  • Epcot®
  • Disney Springs ®
  • Disney's Blizzard Beach ® and Disney's Typhoon Lagoon ®
  • Universal Studios Florida®
  • Universal's Islands of Adventure®
  • I-Drive 360
  • Orlando Premium Outlets Shopping Mall
  • Kennedy Space Center


Title Sponsor



Diamond Sponsor




Platinum Sponsor

3M Health Information Systems

Chartwise Medical Systems, Inc.

Iodine Software




Addison Group
Administrative Consulting Services (ACS)
American Medical Association
Artifact Health
Brundage Group
CDI Search Group
Claro Healthcare
ClinIntell, Inc.
Duke Health
ezDi, Inc.
Harmony Healthcare
Managed Resources
Maxim Healthcare Services
Mindseeker, Inc.
Peak Health Solutions
Pinnacle Enterprise Risk Consulting Services
Pinson & Tang, LLC
Reimbursement Managment Consultants
Saince, Inc.
Streamline Health