VMS' October Webinar: "What We Learned From the Birchwood COVID-19 Outbreak."
Please join the Vermont Medical Society this Thursday, October 15th at 12 p.m. with palliative care specialists: Bob Gramling MD, D.Sc., Michael Lamantia MD, MPH and Tim Lahey MD, MMSc., for their webinar on "What We Learned From the Birchwood COVID-19 Outbreak." This presentation will explore the anatomy of a COVID-19 outbreak at the Vermont nursing home and reflect on lessons learned from the heroic multi-disciplinary community response. Register Here! The internet live activity qualifies for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit. Click to see all of the webinars in the new VMS 2020-2021 Third Thursday Webinar Series.
GMCB Receives 2019 ACO Payer Quality Results
At its meeting last Wednesday, the Green Mountain Care Board was briefed on the ACO network’s quality performance for 2019. The data was provided by each payer, broken down by Medicare, Medicaid and BlueCross BlueShield. Overall, OneCare’s network achieved a 91.8% quality score for Medicare patients in 2019 and 95% for Medicaid patients. In discussion, the payers highlighted alcohol and drug abuse treatment initiation and engagement as an area that needs attention, noting that it takes a systems approach to improve rates of patients accepting treatment for substance use disorders. BlueCross BlueShield also noted that many of the quality measures currently being used are outcome measures and they are in conversation with OneCare about shifting to more process measures that can reflect more of the work clinicians are doing on the ground with patients.
Need CME Credits for Relicensure?
Vermont-licensed physicians must renew their licenses and attest to completing 15 hours of CME credit by November 30, 2020, including one hour on hospice/palliative care/pain management and two hours on prescribing controlled substances. Need some ideas for how to meet these requirements? The Vermont Academic Detailing program is a university-based prescriber education and support program. All sessions are free and are currently being offered over Zoom. A new topic is now available on Managing "Headline Stress" In The Setting of COVID-19. Other topics on Fibromyalgia, Management of Opioids and Advanced Management of Opioids meet an hour of the Vermont prescribing controlled substances requirement. VMS also has a list of other sources of free and low cost CME and don’t forget the VMS annual meeting educational sessions coming up November 7th!
NETRC Publishes Telehealth Key Readiness Resource
The Northeast Telehealth Resource Center (NETRC) is circulating a document that provides a brief overview of key considerations for organizations to ensure they are well prepared for success with their telehealth efforts. Whether you're just getting started, or dove into telehealth head first to quickly respond to COVID-19, taking time to plan your long-term approach is an important step. This resource can help you assess your organization's readiness from multiple perspectives, including administrative, clinical and technological. Have questions? Reach out to the Northeast Telehealth Resource Center (NETRC) for free technical assistance and resources.
Announces $20 Billion in New Phase 3 Provider Relief Funding
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released an additional $20
billion in Phase 3 General Distribution funding. Providers that have already
received Provider Relief Fund payments are invited to apply for this additional
funding that considers financial losses and changes in operating expenses
caused by the coronavirus. Previously ineligible providers, such as those who
began practicing in 2020, are also eligible. Applications for this round of
funding are open from October 5 to November 6, 2020. All provider submissions
will be reviewed to confirm they have received a Provider Relief Fund payment
equal to approximately 2 percent of patient care revenue from prior general
distributions. Applicants that have not yet received Relief Fund payments of 2
percent of patient revenue will receive a payment that, when combined with
prior payments (if any), equals 2 percent of patient care revenue. With the
remaining balance of the $20 billion budget, HRSA will then calculate an
equitable add-on payment. To learn more about the Provider Relief Program,