Hospitals are moving away from paper-based records to electronic
medical records and electronic health records to retain
patient-care data. Electronic formatting facilitates data capture
in a “real-time” environment, and allows many users to access the
data at the same time.
CHA supports the capture and availability of secure patient-care
data through the use of health information technology (HIT)
across the continuum of care. CHA believes HIT will serve as a
tool to enhance patient safety, promote information for
preventative health and reduce health care costs.
Reimbursement policy changes surrounding therapy cap expansion,
manual medical review and now G-codes have the medical
rehabilitation community reeling. Providers will need to
closely evaluate and adapt policies and procedures including
patient care policies to meet the new requirements and support
claims submissions. This webinar will provide practical advice on
how to implement the new regulations, including claims
processing, and offer the MAC perspective on what CMS is
looking for and tips to avoid common problems.
There’s a lot of buzz around the new HIPAA/HITECH final rule, and
hospitals are moving quickly to review and understand the new
federal regulations. But, California has its own set of laws to
consider that are sometimes more stringent. So, which laws do you
need to follow?
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the
Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information
Technology (ONC) have issued the attached request for information
(RFI). Seeking input on potential policy and program changes to
accelerate electronic health information exchange (HIE) across
providers, the RFI specifically addresses the extent to
which current CMS payment policies encourage or impede electronic
information exchange across health care provider
organizations, as well as which current programs are having
the greatest impact on encouraging electronic HIE. CMS also asks
providers to suggest how CMS and states can use existing
authorities to better support electronic and interoperable HIE
among Medicare and Medicaid providers — including post-acute,
long-term care and behavioral health providers — and how policies
could be developed to maximize the impact on care coordination
and quality improvement. Comments on the RFI are due April 22.
A statewide nonprofit consortium of California health care
providers, payers, professional organizations and vendors
launched the California ICD-10 Collaborative in November 2012 to
increase efficiencies and significantly reduce implementation
time and costs associated with ICD-10 compliance. On Feb.
27, the collaborative is hosting a webinar from 10 a.m. -
noon (PT) for its members and organizations interested in
joining. The webinar agenda will include an introduction to and
overview of the collaborative, as well as updates from its three
core workgroups – testing, education and training, and
communications and outreach. For more information about the
webinar, e-mail email@example.com.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will host a
National Provider call on Meaningful Use Stages 1 and 2 on Jan.
16 from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (PT). The call will provide an
overview of the Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Program
Stage 2 final rule and provide information about what hospitals
need to do to receive EHR incentive payments. Registration for
the call is required by Jan. 15. To register, visit www.eventsvc.com/blhtechnologies and
select the link for “Meaningful Use: Stage 1 and Stage 2.”
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued
a request for information (RFI) on hospital and vendor readiness
to report certain clinical quality measures under the hospital
inpatient quality reporting program using certified electronic
health record (EHR) technology required by the Medicare EHR
Incentive Program. In the RFI, CMS asks hospitals to answer a
number of questions, including if they plan to adopt EHR
certified technology during or before calendar year (CY) 2014; if
they are aware of payment adjustments beginning in fiscal year
2015 for failing to demonstrate meaningful use requirements under
the EHR Incentive Program; what operational challenges exist to
electronically report data, and what tools and methodologies they
and their vendors use to validate data. For the full list of CMS
questions, see attached RFI. CHA is interested in hearing from
hospitals about their experiences implementing clinical quality
measures using certified EHRs to inform our response to CMS.
Comments can be submitted electronically to CMS at www.regulations.gov and are due
Jan. 22 by 2 p.m. (PT).
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has
launched a new website to help health care providers using
smartphones, laptops and tablets keep health information secure.
HHS conducted a Mobile Device Roundtable in March 2012 and held a
30-day public comment period to identify and gather tips and
information that would be most useful to health care providers
using mobile devices in their work. The site describes steps
providers can take to assess their mobile device security needs
and develop policies and procedures to address them. The site
also includes answers to frequently asked questions, and offers
posters and educational materials. For more information, visit
the new site at
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Office
of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology
(ONC) recently released an interim final rule revising Stage 2
meaningful use quality reporting requirements for fiscal year
(FY) 2013. The rule also updates certification requirements for
electronic health records systems participating in the meaningful
use program in 2014. In addition, CMS finalized a minimum case
number threshold for clinical quality measure reporting for
eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs) in FY
2013 of five or fewer inpatient discharges per quarter or 20 or
fewer inpatient discharges per year. CMS expanded
this minimum threshold to eligible hospitals and CAHs
in any stage of meaningful use. CMS will accept comments on the
interim final rule, attached, through Feb. 5, 2013. The rule goes
into effect Jan. 7, 2013, and is in addition to final rules
issued in August, which are available at www.calhospital.org/ehr-stage2-final.
The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector
General (OIG) released a report assessing the Center for Medicare
& Medicaid Services’ (CMS) oversight of the Medicare
electronic health record (EHR) incentive program. The report
found the program is vulnerable to paying incentives to
professionals and hospitals that do not fully meet the meaningful
use requirements. OIG recommended CMS conduct prepayment reviews
to verify the accuracy of providers’ self-reported information.
CMS disagrees, believing this step would increase the burden on
professionals and hospitals and could delay incentive payments.
OIG also recommended that CMS issue guidance with specific
examples of documentation that professionals and hospitals should
maintain to support their compliance. In addition, OIG made
recommendations to the Office of the National Coordinator for
Health Information (ONC) on certification provisions to help
ensure the integrity of Medicare EHR incentive payments. The full
report is available for download at https://oig.hhs.gov/oei/reports/oei-05-11-00250.asp.
Yesterday, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services released guidance on
methods and approaches to de-identify protected health
information (PHI) in accordance with the HIPAA Privacy Rule.
De-identification — the process of removing identifiers from PHI
— mitigates privacy risks to individuals and thereby supports the
secondary use of data for comparative effectiveness studies,
policy assessment, life sciences research and other endeavors.
The OCR guidance explains and answers questions regarding the two
methods that can be used to satisfy the Privacy Rule’s
de-identification standard: expert determination and safe harbor.
The guidance is intended to help HIPAA-covered entities
understand de-identification, the general process for
de-identifying information, and the options available for
performing the process. The guidance is available at
You’ve just been served. The subpoena “looks” okay, and
seems “official,” but you’re wary — and you should be. The stakes
are often high if you get this wrong. This
webinar thoroughly explains the nuances of civil and
criminal subpoenas. Participants will learn how to review what
they receive and respond with confidence.
It has come to our attention that some hospitals in California do
not use the CMS 2552-96 form according to CMS instructions when
reporting on Medi-Cal services. Many comply with supplemental
instructions issued by DHCS that require reporting of contract
services in column 3 (designated for Medicare Title V by CMS).
Also, these supplemental instructions state that Medi-Cal managed
care bed days should not be reported on the form.