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Health Management Technology News
  May 8, 2014
In this issue:
 

 Health Management Technology’s Resource Guide sign-up

 CMS: Reforms of regulatory requirements to save healthcare providers $660 million annually

 The Affordable Care Act gives former foster kids healthcare benefits to age 26, though they may not know it

 Wolters Kluwer Health partners with Streamline Health Solutions to target the ICD-10 transition

 GHX expands UDI solution with PTC

 Carestream demonstrates new IT solutions for streamlining enterprise-wide data management at SIIM 2014

 Cognizant warns of slow growth in U.S. healthcare business

 Healthcare, and patients, go south — to Mexico


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CMS: Reforms of regulatory requirements to save healthcare providers $660 million annually

Reforms to Medicare regulations identified as unnecessary, obsolete, or excessively burdensome on hospitals and other healthcare providers will save nearly $660 million annually, and $3.2 billion over five years, through a rule issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid services (CMS).

Together with another rule finalized in 2012, this rule is estimated to save heath care providers more than $8 billion over the next five years. This final rule supports President Obama’s unprecedented regulatory retrospective review—or “regulatory lookback”— initiative, where federal agencies are modifying, streamlining or eliminating excessively burdensome and unnecessary regulations on business.

“By eliminating stumbling blocks and red tape we can assure that the healthcare that reaches patients is more timely, that it’s the right treatment for the right patient, and greater efficiency improves patient care across the board,” said CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner.

This rule helps health care providers to operate more efficiently by getting rid of regulations that are out of date or no longer needed.  Many of the rule’s provisions streamline health and safety standards health care providers must meet in order to participate in Medicare and Medicaid.

For example, a key provision reduces the burden on very small critical access hospitals, as well as rural health clinics and federally qualified health centers, by eliminating the requirement that a physician be held to a prescriptive schedule for being onsite. This provision seeks to address the geographic barriers and remoteness of many rural facilities, and recognizes telemedicine improvements and expansions that allow physicians to provide many types of care at lower costs, while maintaining high-quality care.

Read the full CMS.gov press release here  

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The Affordable Care Act gives former foster kids healthcare benefits to age 26, though they may not know it

Rain clouds couldn’t spoil Kenisha Anthony’s afternoon as she emerged from the Bank United Center in Coral Gables on Saturday with an associate degree in social work from Miami Dade College. The 22-year-old from Miami had survived the school of hard knocks that is Florida’s foster care system to reach this moment. Now a provision of the Affordable Care Act promises to help her make an even better start.

As of Jan. 1, Anthony and others who aged out of foster care became eligible for Medicaid until they turn 26, just as other young adults can stay on their parents’ health plans to that age as part of the ACA. But not all former foster children may know about this little-discussed Obamacare benefit, especially if they’re no longer in the system.

Anthony learned about it through a group called Florida Youth SHINE, a network of former foster children who are working to find and enroll this population.

“I found SHINE on the Internet and contacted them to join. They helped me deal with the technical issues of applying. Now I can go to the doctor,” Anthony said.

Nationally, about 26,000 young adults aged 18 to 22 are released from foster care each year to make it on their own, more than 50 percent with chronic health conditions or mental disorders, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts. Pew researchers estimated that 7,000 to 8,000 former foster youths in Florida could benefit from the Medicaid extension this year if they knew about it.

Funded by Florida’s Children First (FCF), a nonprofit children’s rights advocate, Youth SHINE has grown to 250 members with chapters in Miami-Dade and Broward counties. Their work has included testifying before Florida legislators and child welfare agencies.

“The federal government gives states options for implementing Medicaid. We wanted to make sure our state agencies understood that this federal law required them to offer the Medicaid extension to all foster children,” FCF Deputy Director Robin Rosenberg explained.

Read the full article from The Miami Herald
here
 

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Wolters Kluwer Health partners with Streamline Health Solutions to target the ICD-10 transition

Wolters Kluwer Health  announced that it has partnered with Streamline Health Solutions, Inc. to distribute its Health Language LEAP I-10 claims analytics and mapping solution to mitigate the risks associated with the ICD-10 transition.

“Proactive planning, coordination and financial risk analysis will be critical to successful ICD-10 transitions and will have a direct and significant impact on provider revenues,” said Robert E. Watson, President and CEO, Streamline Health. “Combining our powerful clinical documentation improvement (CDI) projects, enterprise content management and computer-assisted coding solutions with the advanced claims analytics and mapping capabilities of Health Language will increase coding accuracy, reduce risks and enhance operational efficiency for accelerated payments and improved outcomes.”

Streamline Health is a leading provider of transformational data-driven solutions to help healthcare providers reduce exposure to risk, enhance clinical, financial, and operational performance and improve patient care.

Read the full press release here  

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GHX expands UDI solution with PTC

GHX announced it has partnered with PTC to offer a solution to help medical-surgical manufacturers meet both commercial and regulatory compliance needs, including the submission requirements of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) new Unique Device Identification (UDI) rule.

The FDA’s UDI rule aims to dramatically reduce the instances of patient injury and death that result from the misidentification of medical devices. By partnering with PTC, GHX broadens its existing UDI consulting and data services to include the PTC UDI Solution for creating, communicating, and tracking 21 Code of Federal Regulations Part 11-compliant Global UDI Database (GUDID) submissions. The FDA’s first UDI compliance deadline for high-risk Class III devices is September 24, 2014, less than five months away.

For more than a decade, GHX has worked together with hospitals and manufacturers to synchronize product data, helping build a foundation of greater accuracy for e-business transactions. Today, GHX operates the largest, most accurate and up-to-date product content repository in healthcare, helping to ensure GHX customers are always moving toward greater automation and efficiency. With the addition of the PTC UDI solution capabilities, GHX now offers manufacturers an even more comprehensive set of Global Data Standards compliance offerings, helping satisfy their product data standardization needs for both customers and regulators.

Developed in collaboration with the FDA and major medical device manufacturers, the PTC UDI solution generates the required Health Level 7 Structured Product Labeling-formatted submission data, transmits it to the FDA’s GUDID, and tracks FDA responses back to each submission to help manufacturers gain GUDID compliance across their complete product lines. It offers both submission-only technology and data staging technology, providing unique data management and synchronization capabilities to automatically keep GUDID submissions current as product attributes change, one of the key requirements of the FDA UDI rule. Specialized technology pre-validates each GUDID submission using the FDA’s own specification so manufacturers can identify and address issues prior to transmission.

Read the full GHX press release here  

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Carestream demonstrates new IT solutions for streamlining enterprise-wide data management at SIIM 2014

Carestream will discuss its latest generation of powerful new Vue healthcare IT solutions that equips IT managers to streamline user access, sharing and management of images across the enterprise at the upcoming SIIM conference.

“Healthcare organizations are purchasing vendor-neutral archives to help expedite the management of images created by multiple departments,” said Cristine Kao, Carestream’s Global Marketing Director for Healthcare Information Solutions. “We go much further by pairing our innovative Vue for Vendor Neutral Archive that can manage diverse forms of data with.

Vue Connect technology that allows providers to continue using their existing PACS and other departmental systems as part of their enterprise workflow.”

Implementing a new vendor-neutral archive that accesses data from existing departmental platforms can achieve consolidation and streamline management while reducing expenses.

Read the Carestream full press release here  

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Cognizant warns of slow growth in U.S. healthcare business

Technology outsourcing company Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp said growth in its North America healthcare business would remain slow this quarter due to lower spending by customers as they adjust to changes brought on by Obamacare.

Cognizant's shares fell as much as 7 percent, after the company also forecast current-quarter revenue below analysts' estimates.

The company provides services such as claims processing, billing and maintaining regulatory compliance to healthcare customers, including insurers and hospitals.

"More and more employers (are) moving to high deductible plans and so on, which is changing consumption patterns for healthcare in the United States," Chief Executive Francisco D'Souza said on a conference call on Wednesday.

Revenue growth in North America, Cognizant's largest market, slowed to 16.1 percent, in the first quarter ended March 31 from 16.3 percent, a year earlier.

The company's customers include operators of online healthcare exchanges, set up as part of U.S. President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act. Cognizant provides services such as connecting payers to the exchanges and call center operations to handle customer queries.

Read the full article from Yahoo news here  

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Healthcare, and patients, go south — to Mexico

Irma Montalvo signed up for a health plan through California's new insurance exchange last month, getting coverage for the first time in eight years.

But when she needed treatment for a painful skin rash, Montalvo didn't go to a doctor near her home in Chula Vista. Instead she drove to Mexico, about 16 miles south. Her doctor, Cecilia Espinoza, diagnosed her with shingles and prescribed medication to relieve pain and head off complications.

Montalvo, 64, said she comes to Tijuana in part because it costs just $15 to see the doctor. She can't use her insurance for care outside California, but it's still cheaper because she doesn't have to worry about a deductible. More important, she said, is that she feels comfortable with Espinoza.

"She listens to me," said Montalvo, a U.S. citizen who was born in Mexico, said in Spanish. "I come here feeling really bad, and three days later I am better."

Mexican immigrants living in California, Arizona, Texas and New Mexico have long sought health care in border cities such as Tijuana, Mexicali and Nogales. The Affordable Care Act won't change that, experts said, even though it has expanded coverage to millions of people, including many Latinos.

Naturalized citizens and legal residents are expected to continue traveling for check-ups, minor surgeries and dental care, drawn to treatment that is less expensive and a medical culture that is less hurried. Doctors speak their language and patients often can get appointments without long waits.

In fact, it's possible even more U.S. residents may seek care with Mexican doctors, said David Hayes-Bautista, director of the Center for the Study of Latino Health and Culture at the UCLA School of Medicine. Many Latinos in the United States live in areas with a huge undersupply of providers, and as new coverage increases the demand for care, waits for appointments could grow longer and more frustrating, he said.

"If you don't have access to care, going to Tijuana may seem like a reasonable alternative," he said.

Read the full article from USA Today here  

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Industry News
5.8.14
CMS: Reforms of regulatory requirements to save healthcare providers $660 million annually
Reforms to Medicare regulations identified as unnecessary, obsolete, or excessively burdensome on hospitals and other health care...
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5.8.14
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