Trustees Report Shows Reduced Cost Growth, Longer Medicare Solvency

The Medicare Trustees today projected that the trust fund that finances Medicare’s hospital insurance coverage will remain solvent until 2026, two years beyond what was projected in last year’s report.

A number of factors have contributed to the improved outlook, including lower-than-expected Part A spending in 2012, and lower projected Medicare Advantage program costs. Recent data from the Medicare Advantage program indicate that certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act will help reduce the growth of spending in this program by more than was previously projected. Partially offsetting these lower spending projections are somewhat lower projected levels of tax revenue.

The report is available at

Cultural Competence: The Impact of Stigma on Patients with HIV/AIDS Webcast

A LIVE WEBCAST BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE: AIDS Education and Training Center –

National Multicultural Center (AETC-NMC)

at Howard University College of Medicine


Josepha Campinha-Bacote, PhD, MAR, PMHCNS-BC, CTN-A, FAAN

President, Transcultural C.A.R.E. Associates

  • Define stigma and discrimination
  • Discuss types of stigma and factors contributing to HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination
  • Identify the consequences of HIV/AIDS-related stigma
  • Discuss at least 4 culturally responsive strategies to reduce HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination
Thursday, June 6, 2013 1:00PM-2:00PM CDT
This activity has been reviewed and approved for up to 1.0 Prescribed   credits by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

visit to register.

HHS Announces the Winners of the Reducing Cancer Among Women of Color Challenge

Apps help underserved and minority women take control of their health

HHS Deputy Assistant Secretary for Minority Health J. Nadine Gracia, MD, MSCE announced the winners of the Reducing Cancer Among Women of Color Challenge. A first-of-its-kind effort to address health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities, the winning apps will help women of color prevent and fight cancer.

The winning apps, Big Yellow Star, Broadstone Technologies, Appbrahma, HW-Technology, and Netzealous, are designed to help women of color prevent and fight cancer by linking them to information regarding preventive and screening services and locations, including support groups and care services.

The apps all focus on providing high-quality health information in different languages to women and community health workers about screening and preventive services. The apps were developed to interface securely with patient health records and strengthen communication across a patient’s care team in an effort to better coordinate information and care.

In the United States, breast and gynecologic cancers are responsible for more than 68,000 deaths each year with over 300,000 new diagnoses made each year. Women of color are disproportionately affected due to various reasons, including the inability to access health care and preventive information, services, referral, and treatment.

The Reducing Cancer among Women of Color Challenge is a partnership between HHS’ Office of Minority Health and ONC.  It challenged innovators and developers to create a mobile device-optimized tool that engages and empowers women to improve the prevention and treatment of breast, cervical, uterine, and ovarian cancer in underserved and minority communities and that can interface with provider electronic health records.

To learn more about the app challenge, the winners, and information on how to download the winning apps please visit: and

In-Facility or Non-Facility Lab Coding Errors on CMS Watch List

At the time a Place of Service (POS) code is developed, CMS determines whether a Laboratory facility or non-facility payment rate is appropriate for that setting.  After a Lab provider submits claims to Medicare contractors, the M.C.s are required to make payment at the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) rate designated for each POS code.  Contractors are instructed to develop local policies that develop or clarify POS setting definitions in situations where national POS policy is lacking or unclear.  The CMS MM7631 – Clarified Place of Service (POS) Coding Instructions  are detailed at  on the MLN Website.

Effective Communication Tools for Healthcare Professionals

HRSA offers free online health literacy training called Effective Communication Tools for Healthcare Professionals.  This free online learning experience is designed to help health professionals improve their patient-communication skills, increase their awareness and knowledge of factors that affect their communication with patients, and implement patient-centered communication practices.  The course, developed by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), comprises five modules and is estimated to take a total of 5 hours to complete.  The course may be completed at the user’s own pace and may be taken for credit (CEU/CE, CHES, CME, and CNE) or not for credit.

Medicaid ICD-10 Implementation Project May 2013 Update

Advisory for Mental Health Service Providers:

  • All Medicaid providers must implement ICD-10 in order to have claims with dates of services on or after October 1, 2014, considered for payment.
  • Nebraska Medicaid currently requires ICD-9 diagnosis codes. While DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition) codes were designed to correspond with ICD-9 codes, they do not correspond to ICD-10 codes. Mental health providers must transition to ICD-10 in order to have claims considered for payment after October 1, 2014.


CMS has resources to help prepare for a smooth transition. Visit  to find out more.  Please submit questions about this bulletin or about ICD-10 to

Articles on Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH)

Journal of the American Medical Association

Addressing the Social Determinants of Health within the PCMH.


Annals of Family Medicine

List of articles from the May-June edition, focusing on the PCMH.  Two articles in particular:  A report on the transition to a PCMH by a CHC network in New York indicates that PCMH implementation has the potential to alter processes of care and improve outcomes of care; a new study indicates that it’s possible to reduce emergency department use with PCMH transformation.


Info on Outreach & Enrollment for FQHCs

The NACHC website at links from the home page to important Outreach & Enrollment information for FQHCs.  On the Outreach & Enrollment page is information about job descriptions, resources, HRSA Supplemental Funding, Cooperative Agreement to Support Navigators information, and links to Enroll America and Health Outreach Partners.

PCMH Accelerator Webinar Series: Maximizing the Use of Your GE Centricity EHR for PCMH

Maximizing the Use of Your GE Centricity EHR for PCMH

Webinars are scheduled for 1:00-2:30pm CDT (12noon-1:30pm MDT).

Part 1 – Date: June 5, 2013
Registration deadline: June 3
Click here to register.

Part 2 – Date June 12, 2013
Registration deadline: June 10
Click here to register.

PCMH Accelerator Webinar Series: Maximizing the Use of Your GE Centricity EHR for PCMH

Maximizing the Use of Your GE Centricity EHR for PCMH

Webinars are scheduled for 1:00-2:30pm CDT (12noon-1:30pm MDT).

Part 1 – Date: June 5, 2013
Registration deadline: June 3
     Click here to register.

Part 2 – Date June 12, 2013
Registration deadline: June 10
     Click here to register.