Practice Support Newsletter

August 2023

Measure of the Month

Improving Childhood Immunizations

August is Childhood Immunization Month. The HEDIS Combination 10 (CIS-10) vaccines focus on appropriate timing of childhood vaccinations and is supported through NCQA.   

The measure details:

  • Patients up to 2 years of age
  • Percentage who received Combination 10 vaccines
  • Vaccine by 2 Years, Number of doses per NCQA HEDIS Combo 10 Measure (numerator)
    • DtaP (Diphtheria, tetanus, acellular Pertussis) – 4 doses
    • MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) – 1 dose
    • PCV (Pneumococcal Conjugate) – 4 doses
    • VZV (Varicella Zoster Vaccine) – 1 dose
    • HiB (Haemophilus Influenza type b) – 3 doses
    • Hep A (Hepatitis A) – 1 dose
    • Hep B (Hepatitis B) – 3 doses
    • IPV (Polio) – 3 doses
    • Influenza (flu) – 2 doses
    • Rotavirus – 2 to 3 doses – Contingent upon rotavirus vaccine

Strategies to help improve your vaccination rates include:

  • Leverage your EHR to pull reports 30/60/90 days before the patients' due date to reach out and get them scheduled
  • Plan a vaccination clinic with extended hours to help accommodate families
  • Plan a raffle for families with entries given for on-time vaccination
  • Work with an AHEC Practice Support Coach!

Regulatory Reminders – Glove Storage

Exam gloves are an often-overlooked item in a practice but are important to protect staff and patients. Each glove manufacturer has specific recommendations for storage and shelf life but there are common recommendations to review to ensure everyone is benefiting from the use of exam gloves. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you evaluate your glove storage:

  • The temperature should be in a “normal” range. Gloves used in mobile clinics/events should be moved back to normal range as soon as possible. See the manufacturer instructions for specific ranges.
  • Storage conditions should be free of dust, light and moisture. Any sign of water damage (soggy cardboard/water stains) the entire box should be discarded.
  • Gloves should be discarded if they reach their expiration date or become discolored, brittle, stiff, overly soft or shapeless after stretching.
  • Gloves, and other clean items, should be segregated from contaminated materials/spaces. Storing clinical items under sinks is never appropriate.

Make It Actionable!   Do a walkthrough of the practice to identify where and how gloves are being stored. Update or create a checklist to include glove storage paying special attention if gloves are utilized outside of general office use. (Sources: Storing Disposable Gloves, Best Practice, Where and How to Store Disposable Gloves)

Active Shooter Webinar

In light of recent events in Tennessee at an outpatient clinic, Curi Advisory has shared a webinar available to everyone. If you have not included active shooter training into your emergency plan, this is a good time to do so. You can access the webinar here: Risk Solutions Webinar: Surviving an Active Shooter on Vimeo

Launch of Behavioral Health and Intellectual/ Developmental Disabilities Tailored Plans Delayed

The Department of Health and Human Services is delaying implementation of the Behavioral Health and Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities Tailored Plans. Tailored Plan launch was scheduled for Oct. 1, 2023, but will now go forward at a date still to be determined. The Department and the LME/MCOs remain committed to the implementation of the Tailored Plans, ensuring minimal disruption for the roughly 160,000 eligible beneficiaries set to be in the Tailored Plans.

Even though the Tailored Plans are delayed, Tailored Care Management is still moving forward.

Free Online Learning: Child Maltreatment – Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency

Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency occurs all around us and knowing the signs/symptoms can help bring it to an end. During this online module, learners will understand what abuse, neglect, and dependency are as well as how/what to report when they see its signs and symptoms. Learners will also get a glimpse of the legal implications of not reporting abuse/neglect/dependency. Lastly, this is a heavy topic and requires extra attention to self-care for providers; learners will become familiar with terms like compassion fatigue, secondary traumatic stress, and burnout. Some strategies to engage in self-care will also be shared. Credits are available, for free, upon completion.  

988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline Adds Spanish Text and Chat Service

One year after the rollout of the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and its 988 Lifeline partners announced the addition of Spanish text and chat services. Specialized services for LGBTQI+ youth and young adults were also added earlier this month, following a successful pilot test. 

MIPS Final Score Preview Period is Now Open

The MIPS Final Score Preview period for the 2022 performance year is now open. Sign in to preview your final score based on the data you submitted for the 2022 performance year and review the 2022 MIPS Final Score Preview FAQs for more information. Preview final scores now and to contact the QPP Service Center with questions or concerns. 

Rates Increased for Obstetrical Maternal Services

Effective July 1, 2023, NC Medicaid has increased the Medicaid rate for Maternal Bundled Payments for pregnancy care. This was a requirement of Senate Bill 20. Providers can find the applicable rate increases listed on their respective Fee Schedule. Please note that all rates are at 71% of Medicare or more as legislated and some CPT codes may have been at this rate prior to Senate Bill 20. For the qualifying CPT codes, review the full announcement

South Piedmont AHEC Practice Support Helping you meet the challenges!

In this time of great transition in health care practices need to position themselves for new payment models, incentive programs, and other health care reforms while refocusing on patient-centered care. South Piedmont AHEC is currently able to provide these direct, individualized services at no cost.

Additional Resources:

South Piedmont AHEC – Formerly Charlotte AHEC
Part of the NC AHEC Program
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