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LHIMA eNews

January 2022

Inside this Issue:
LHIMA President’s Message Winter 2022

LHIMA President’s Message Winter 2022

Here we are again in the midst of another spike in COVID infections!  We are approaching another LHIMA annual conference.  I hope to see all of you on the virtual conference platform!  Last year was such a huge success, I suspect that we will see that again this year.  Be sure to check your email for the registration link for the conference, March 16-18.

In other AHIMA news, the training for the AHIMA Advocacy Summit will be happening March 28-29.  Sharon McGee, Danielle Thompson, Indra Osi and I will be representing LHIMA during this summit.  The AHIMA vision is a world where trusted information transforms health and healthcare by connecting people systems and ideas.  This summit will be looking working to support access, integrity and connection.

The HoD met on December 16 to learn about the strategic outcomes, communication task force, consumer engagement, and the 2022 learning journeys.  The HoD Policy and Procedures Manual task force, the Bylaws task force and the CSA Excellence Presentation Series Task force all kick off in January.  CCHIIM, which is the body that is over certifications at AHIMA, has reminded the membership that the proviso that temporarily allowed RHITs with baccalaureate degrees to sit for the RHIA exam will conclude, as originally designed, on December 31, 2021.

The CHDA exam refresh became publicly available in November 2021.  A certification audit was completed in November, as well.  The Certified Coding Associate (CCA) Job Task Analysis (JTA) survey deployed in November, with the revised exam blueprint publicly available at the end of Q1, 2022, with the beta exam tentatively scheduled for May 2022. 

The Registered Health Information Technologist (RHIT) JTA also started in December, with the revised exam blueprint publicly available in Q3, 2022, with the beta exam scheduled for Q4, 2022.
From the Council for Excellence in Education (CEE):
  • The Academic Research workgroup is on task for launch in Q1 2022 using Smarter Select Platform and a double-blind peer-review process.
  • The Assembly on Education (AOE) Program workgroup will begin in Q1 2022 to create a program that will ensure faculty have access to domain-based knowledge and preparation with additional offerings throughout the year to promote opportunities for faculty networking and engagement.
  • The Curricula Guidance workgroup is tasked with updating the 2018 Curricula Guidance. The Associate and Baccalaureate are complete and the Graduate is in process. All will be reviewed by the entire CEE prior to distribution.
  • The Faculty Development workgroup develops resources, including the development of programs offered to new and continuing educators. The workgroup is currently managing the Faculty Forum ACCESS community and sharing resources. The community has grown by over 100 faculty due to workgroup initiatives.
  • An ad hoc CourseShare workgroup was convened to make a recommendation to keep as is, grow or discontinue it. The work is completed. A new ad hoc workgroup is in development to conduct a qualitative review of resources within the repository, a consecutive workgroup will be identified to act on recommendations from the review.
  • The Programs with Incentives ad hoc workgroup was convened to identify opportunities to promote educational programs. Through a survey of programs, the workgroup received limited but actionable data that will inform CEE of additional opportunities to partner with academic programs and component state associations to actively recruit students. The 2022 CEE will form a workgroup(s) to develop tools to advance this effort.
I hope that all of you are healthy and safe.  We will see you in the conference March 16-18!  Mark your calendars now!

John Barrilleaux, MME, RHIA, President of LHIMA
 
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2022 LHIMA Annual Meeting

2022 LHIMA Annual Meeting

March 16 – 18 | Virtual
 
You are invited to join the Louisiana Health Information Management Association for its 2022 Annual Convention from March 16 - 18, 2021. This year’s theme is "The Comeback is Always Greater than the Setback" and it will be hosted virtually with a mix of live and on-demand sessions to best fit within your day. The agenda will feature exceptional presentations for all HIM domains from a variety of speakers both local and national.
 
Register Here
Registration Open | Turbo CDI Workshop

Registration Open | Turbo CDI Workshop

LHIMA presents a two-day workshop titled ‘Turbo CDI Workshop’ on January 26th and 27th (from 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM CST each day), where Dr. Jacob Martin and Glenn Krauss will be utilizing their deep experience and breadth of knowledge in novel approaches to CDI that produce real improvement in physician documentation, sharing with attendees 12 separate presentations using an interactive approach to learning.
 
Register Here

Be Featured in our Spotlight Series on Social Media

LHIMA wants to feature our members! Email charisseemmer@yahoo.com with a picture and short bio of someone you think deserves recognition to be spotlighted on our media platforms. Is that person you? Go ahead and send in your submission!
 
Be Featured in our Spotlight Series on Social Media
Be Sure to “Like” Us on Facebook 

Be Sure to “Like” Us on Facebook 

Follow the link below to find LHIMA articles, event postings, and other news pertaining to HIM that might be of interest to you. 
 
Click Here to "Like" Us on Facebook
Job Board 

Job Board 

Are you interested in posting a job opportunity or seek job employment in HIM? Click here for access to a great membership tool. 
 Biden-Harris Administration

 

Biden-Harris Administration Requires Insurance Companies and Group Health Plans to Cover the Cost of At-Home COVID-19 Tests, Increasing Access to Free Tests

As part of its ongoing efforts across many channels to expand Americans’ access to free testing, the Biden-Harris Administration is requiring insurance companies and group health plans to cover the cost of over-the-counter, at-home COVID-19 tests, so people with private health coverage can get them for free starting January 15th. The new coverage requirement means that most consumers with private health coverage can go online or to a pharmacy or store, buy a test, and either get it paid for up front by their health plan, or get reimbursed for the cost by submitting a claim to their plan. This requirement incentivizes insurers to cover these costs up front and ensures individuals do not need an order from their health care provider to access these tests for free.
 
Click Here to Read More
Benefiting Rural Students Via Telemedicine Access

Benefiting Rural Students Via Telemedicine Access

Traditionally, healthcare is associated with time off work, travel to an office or clinic, and a stint in the waiting room for an undetermined amount of time in order to visit with a provider. It can be especially difficult for a parent with school-age children to leave work when their child becomes ill at school. Oftentimes, transportation and financial uncertainties also add to the struggle of getting appropriate medical care for our children in Claiborne Parish. 

How can the non-clinical arm of healthcare assist with easing the struggle? Welcome to the world of telemedicine.  

While the practice of providing healthcare in scenarios where the patient is not physically present with the provider has been around for decades, telemedicine programs have been slow to reach remote, rural communities like Claiborne Parish. Unfortunately, with the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 and the subsequent COVID-19 pandemic, there is a need for telemedicine capabilities in our community like never before. Thankfully, through the CARES Act, Congress recently provided an additional $25 million to the Rural Development program for Distance Learning & Telemedicine. This program helps rural hospitals with the funding necessary to implement telemedicine programs in their area. 

Claiborne Memorial Medical Center has been selected as one of a few recipients nationwide to receive more than $700,000 in grant funding to establish a telemedicine program in Claiborne Parish. The program will be a joint venture between Claiborne Memorial Medical Center and the Claiborne Parish School Board with implementation at all six schools in the parish and participation from providers at both the hospital and area clinics. The program will also enable residents of area nursing homes to use telemedicine as an alternative to hospital or clinic visits. 

The upcoming project requires placement of a telemedicine cart in a private medical room on each school campus. These carts are equipped with standard computer equipment, as well as, medical devices like a stethoscope, otoscope and a general exam camera. Using the onboard HIPAA-compliant video software, the carts will provide students and faculty the ability to visit with a provider for a medical assessment without the need to leave the school campus. 

“What’s amazing about the world of telemedicine is that actual medical devices are connected to the machine and the nurse uses it on the patient,” said Tina Haynes, CMMC CEO. “A stethoscope, for example, is hooked to the machine and held up to the patient’s chest. A doctor 30 miles away is able to hear the heartbeat.” 

When speaking with Claiborne Parish School Board Superintendent, William Kennedy, about the challenges he is seeing his students face this year, he said, “There is an increase in students missing school due to illness.” Studies show that a high absentee rate for a student can lead to low self-esteem, social isolation, low reading proficiency and low test scores. With the help of this USDA grant, a successful telemedicine program will provide a quicker diagnosis for sick children thus reducing future hospital admissions; provide an additional avenue for wellness screenings; and potentially reduce absenteeism for students, parents and school faculty/staff. 

A similar telemedicine program has been in place in both Jackson and Bienville Parishes for several years. Those programs have had outstanding success with reduced absenteeism and improved adolescent health. 

By: Stephanie Risner, MHI, RHIA
 

CMS Issues Guidance Related to Patient Liability Income and Reductions

To see important information related to patient liability income, click here. 
Medicare FFS Claims: 2% Payment Adjustment (Sequestration) Changes

Medicare FFS Claims: 2% Payment Adjustment (Sequestration) Changes

The Protecting Medicare and American Farmers from Sequester Cuts Act impacts payments for all Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) claims:
  • No payment adjustment through March 31, 2022
  • 1% payment adjustment April 1 – June 30, 2022
  • 2% payment adjustment beginning July 1, 2022
Omicron Surge May Peak in January, Models Predict

Omicron Surge May Peak in January, Models Predict

The national surge in COVID-19 cases fueled by the highly transmissible omicron variant may last weeks, rather than months, according to the most recent projections from the COVID-19 Scenario Modeling Hub, a consortium of researchers helping the CDC track the pandemic's trajectory.

The latest ensemble projection combines eight different models from various academic institutions, including Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University and the University of Notre Dame (Ind.). Researchers developed four different scenarios that factor in various levels of omicron's transmissibility, illness severity and ability to evade natural immunity. 
 
Click Here for More Information
Coding Stroke for the IRF-PAI and Claim Form

Coding Stroke for the IRF-PAI and Claim Form

Coding professionals in the inpatient rehabilitation facility setting are keenly aware of the uniqueness and challenges of coding for this level of care. In most facilities, coding is done within four days of admission for the Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Patient Assessment Instrument (IRF-PAI). After discharge, the coding professional assigns codes for the IRF-PAI and the claim form. This article will address the coding of stroke patients for the IRF-PAI and the claim form.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke states that roughly 800,000 people each year suffer a stroke, with two-thirds of those receiving rehabilitation services. Stroke is the most frequent impairment group category for most inpatient rehabilitation facilities. For coding professionals, it can also be the most confusing because of the uniqueness of the category.

Click Here to Read More
Marrying Public Health with Information Communication Technology (ICT)

Marrying Public Health with Information Communication Technology (ICT)

Imagine a woman in a remote setting needing to return to the nearest health facility for follow-up treatment receiving a reminder on her mobile phone or a patient needing the next prescription of her hypertension medication receiving this by email without the physical contact at a health facility. Although these may seem small, it makes a difference in improving equitable access to health care to remote and underserved communities without the financial ruin or impoverishment. 
 
Click Here to Read More
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