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Health Management Technology News
  February 28, 2014
In this issue:
 

► CMS won't budge on ICD-10 deadline

► DOJ and HHS announce record-breaking recoveries from joint efforts to combat healthcare fraud

► CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield commits $1.3 million to telemedicine projects

► Google Glass could help stop emerging global health threats

► Light of Hearts Villa deploys Wi-Fi Emergency Call Solution from STANLEY Healthcare


CMS won't budge on ICD-10 deadline

The ICD-10 deadline will not change, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services told HIMSS14 attendees at a keynote on Thursday. And the government should have used a systems integrator to oversee Healthcare.gov, said Marilyn Tavenner.

Although providers and payers must be prepared to meet the Oct. 1 ICD-10 deadline, CMS may give "a hardship exemption" to facilities unable to achieve Meaningful Use 2,  said Tavenner, a point she reiterated during a brief Q&A exchange with moderator Dr. Carol Steltenkamp of HIMSS.

"There are no more delays and the system will go live on Oct 1. Let's face it guys, we've already delayed it several times and it's time to move on. It's a standard in the rest of the world," said Tavenner.

Read the full InformationWeek article here ► 

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DOJ and HHS announce record-breaking recoveries from joint efforts to combat healthcare fraud

Attorney General Eric Holder and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius released the annual Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control (HCFAC) Program report showing that for every dollar spent on healthcare related fraud and abuse investigations through this and other programs in the last three years, the government recovered $8.10. This is the highest three-year average return on investment in the 17-year history of the HCFAC Program.

The government’s healthcare fraud prevention and enforcement efforts recovered a record-breaking $4.3 billion in taxpayer dollars in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013, up from $4.2 billion in FY 2012, from individuals and companies who attempted to defraud federal health programs serving seniors or who sought payments from taxpayers to which they were not entitled.

Over the last five years, the administration’s enforcement efforts have recovered $19.2 billion, up from $9.4 billion over the prior five-year period. Since the inception of the program in 1997, the HCFAC Program has returned more than $25.9 billion to the Medicare Trust Funds and treasury.

These recoveries released in the annual HCFAC Program report, demonstrate President Obama’s commitment to making the elimination of fraud, waste and abuse, particularly in health care, a top priority for the administration. This is the fifth consecutive year that the program has increased recoveries over the past year, climbing from $2 billion in FY 2008 to over $4 billion every year since FY 2011.

Visit HHS for the full report ► 

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CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield commits $1.3 million to telemedicine projects

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst) has pledged to invest more than $1.3 million in four initiatives designed to expand the use of telemedicine to treat patients with behavioral health care needs in underserved urban and rural areas of Maryland and Washington, D.C.

Responding to a request for proposals CareFirst issued last October, the following community health organizations demonstrated the demand for their telemedicine services, need for CareFirst’s funding, benefit to their community and sustainability of their treatment model:

  • Catholic Charities of Baltimore will use its $53,479 grant to provide behavioral health services to about 120 underserved children and adults in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel and Allegany counties using video-conferencing technology;
  • Atlantic General Hospital on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, in partnership with Baltimore’s Kennedy Krieger Institute, will use its $189,656 grant to provide initial evaluations and follow-up visits to about 325 children and young adults with learning disabilities and behavioral disorders in Worcester, Wicomico and Somerset counties;
  • La Clinica del Pueblo of Washington, D.C., will receive $424,635 to expand remote access to its bilingual counselors and health care providers through teleconferencing to about 650 patients in the D.C. area; and,
  • Baltimore’s Sheppard Pratt Health System will use its $647,200 grant to provide about 1,200 patients of federally qualified health centers in Worcester, Somerset, Garrett, Cecil, Caroline and Dorchester counties with access to psychiatrists via teleconferencing and video-conferencing.

Read the full press release here ► 

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Google Glass could help stop emerging global health threats

The much-talked-about Google Glass — the eyewear with computer capabilities — could potentially save lives, especially in isolated or far-flung locations, say scientists. They are reporting development of a Google Glass app that takes a picture of a diagnostic test strip and sends the data to computers, which then rapidly beam back a diagnostic report to the user. The information also could help researchers track the spread of diseases around the world. The study appears in the journal ACS Nano, a publication of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society.

“It’s very important to detect emerging public health threats early, before an epidemic arises and many lives are lost,” says Aydogan Ozcan, Ph.D. “With our app for Google Glass and our remote computing and data analysis power, we can deliver a one-two punch — provide quantified biomedical test results for individual patients, plus analyze all those data to determine whether an outbreak is imminent.”

Visit ACS to read the full study ► 

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Light of Hearts Villa deploys Wi-Fi Emergency Call Solution from STANLEY Healthcare

STANLEY Healthcare announced that it has deployed its AeroScout Wi-Fi Emergency Call Solution at Light of Hearts Villa, in Bedford, Ohio, near Cleveland.

The solution enables residents to call for assistance not only from any location within the multi-story building, but also in the extensive grounds that surround Light of Hearts Villa. Residents have been equipped with wireless AeroScout call pendants, which communicate over the community’s standard Wi-Fi access points to STANLEY Healthcare’s MobileView enterprise software.

Light of Hearts Villa is the first senior living community in the state of Ohio to deploy this leading-edge solution. “We’re very proud to be at the forefront of using the latest technology to improve care for our residents,” says Elizabeth (Betty) Hickle, executive director of Light of Hearts Villa. “When we began looking for a replacement for our legacy wired nurse call system, we had several goals in mind. First and foremost, we wanted to increase safety for residents while outside their apartments, and reduce the number of audible alarms. In addition, we wanted to leverage our investment in Wi-Fi coverage throughout our facility, and we needed better data on response times and resident call patterns to further improve our performance and care levels. STANLEY Healthcare was the only vendor able to provide a solution that combined all these elements.”

Read the full press release here ► 

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