Meaningful Use (MU)
Meaningful Use is the phrase used in the 2009 HITECH Act to describe the standard providers must achieve to receive incentive payments for purchasing and implementing an EHR system. The term meaningful use combines clinical use of the EHR (i.e. ePrescribing), health information exchange, and reporting of clinical quality measures. Achieving meaningful use also requires the use of an EHR that has been certified by a body such as CCHIT, Drummond Group, ICSA Laboratories, Inc. or InfoGuard Laboratories, Inc. The term can also apply informally to the process of achieving the standard, for example “How is our practice doing with meaningful use?”
An abbreviation for Mobile Health, mHealth is a blanket label for transmitting health services, and indeed practicing medicine, using mobile devices such as cell phones and tablets. mHealth has large implications not only for newer devices like smartphones and high-end tablets, but also for feature phones and low-cost tablets in developing nations. Many different software and hardware applications fit under the umbrella of mHealth so the term is used conceptually to talk about future innovations and delivery systems.
From our friend Frank Cohen:
“I have some great news concerning the upcoming Mastering RBRVS quickinar on Tuesday, March 19 at 2:00 ET. The presentation has been granted 1.5 AAPC CEU credits. According to AAPC: “This program meets AAPC guidelines for 1.5 CEUs. Can be split between Core and CPCO, CPMA, CPPM and CEMC for continuing education units.”
What is Medicaid?
Medicaid provides health and long-term care financial assistance for certain groups of people with limited income. Medicaid was enacted under title XIX of the Social Security Act as a joint program between the Federal government and all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Territories.
Medicaid became effective January 1, 1966, and currently is the largest source of medical and health-related funding for Americas poorest people. The Federal agency that administers the Medicaid program is the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
Medicaid programs differ in each state.
Welcome to our guide to Healthcare Buzzwords!
An acronym for “Accountable Care Organization”, an ACO is a model of healthcare delivery in which a group of healthcare providers agree to accept payment for their services based on the aggregated health outcomes of the patients they see, as opposed to the total number of services performed. ACOs reward providers in a “fee for health” model, as opposed to a traditional “fee for service” model. Although the term ACO can apply to a variety of types of organizations, regulations for establishing ACOs to participate in the Medicare Shared Savings Program specifically were included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010.
Effective January 1, 2013, Medicare and other payers will pay for two new CPT codes (99495 and 99496) that are used to report physician or qualifying non-physician practitioner transitional care management (TCM) service for patients, following a discharge from a:
- Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF)
- Community Mental Health Center (CMHC)
- Outpatient observation
- Partial hospitalization
and including a transition to:
- Rest Home
- Assisted Living
These two codes require the medical decision-making to be of moderate to high complexity. Each code encompasses one face-to-face visit and non face-to-face services, for instance, arranging home health agencies for patient care.
Codes are selected based on medical decision-making associated with the patients condition, the time when the communication is initiated with the patient, and the time when the face-to-face encounter occurs following discharge. The first face-to-face encounter is included. The codes may be reported only once per 30 calendar days. See the full code description at the end of this article.
NOTE: this series will be repeated in the near future – click on the Webinars tab above for the latest information.
“We’ll start with the money.”
We say that a lot in client meetings at Manage My Practice. Whatever issues might exist in the practices that contact us looking for advice – financial problems will typically need to be addressed first before anything else can be corrected. No matter the size, specialty or type of practice – private, non-profit, and everything in between – the financial foundation of the organization must be built (or remodeled) before choosing strategic partners, determining new service lines, or recruiting physicians.
With no money, there is no mission – or at least no reason for hanging the shingle.
This is Patient Safety Week. Patient safety may bring to mind infections acquired in hospitals, but we know strides are being made to make hospitals, health centers and other patient care facilities much safer for patients.
But what are medical practices doing?
According a recent article in JAMA, primary care practices need to work harder at patient safety, but for reasons that might surprise you. The article cites communication and process issues as key to creating potentially unsafe situations for patients.
For anyone interested in implementing a credit card on file program in your practice – to increase collections, improve cash flow, and eliminate sending statements altogether – you’ll want to register now for Manage My Practice’s Webinar: Starting a Credit Card on File Program in Your Practice.
Tuesday March 5th, 2013 at 1 p.m. EST 10 a.m. PST join Mary Pat and I for a 60 minute session that will prepare you to plan, prepare, negotiate, and execute your Credit Card on File Program. Your patients and your staff will be happier – and so will you!
Register here for Tuesday’s Webinar.
And if you are interested in learning more about core practice operations, or just want to increase your knowledge and understanding of medical practice management, be sure to check out our new Revenue Cycle Management Webinar Series – a great way for anyone to strengthen and refresh their skills!
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has stated that she plans on spending a lot of time getting rest and relaxation. She had an extensive travel schedule and was feeling burnt out from a very demanding role.
How are you feeling right now? Do you feel that your work is controlling you or you are in control of your work?
In addition to consulting, I often take interim management positions. Recently I was asked to complete an online application. To my surprise, before I started attacking the empty fields on the electronic form, I was asked to review a list of responsibilities and requirements that had nothing – and everything – to do with the job I would be doing. It was all about culture.
I was taken back at how in my face the list was, and I was very impressed that the organization thought enough of what was on the list to put it in the face of every applicant, and to ask us to sign off saying we understood and agreed to abide it.
Should you have something like this on your application?