Physicians can apply for 2013 eRx hardship exemption beginning Nov. 1   10/18/2012
Individual physicians and other eligible professionals and selected group practices can apply online for a hardship exemption under the 2013 Medicare Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Program beginning Nov. 1 through Jan. 31, 2013. For help applying online, see the CMS user guide and website. Eligible professionals who do not meet the program's requirements or qualify for an exemption face a 1.5% reduction in their total allowable Medicare Part B charges effective Jan. 1, 2013. Hardship exemption requests for the 2014 payment adjustment will be accepted during a separate timeframe later in calendar year 2013.
AHA announces next webinars in audit education series   10/18/2012
The AHA Audit Education Series will host a members-only webinar Oct. 31 on reducing exposure to short-stay RAC denials through better documentation. On Nov. 16, the series continues with a webinar exploring Medicaid audits and the roles of Zone Program Integrity Contractors and the Office of the Inspector General in program integrity efforts. The free members-only series features top officials from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, congressional staff, compliance and legal experts, and hospital representatives sharing successful practices. Each webinar also includes an update on AHA efforts to advocate for Congress and CMS to streamline auditing programs and eliminate duplicative audits and inappropriate denials. For more information and to register for the next two webinars, click here.
AHA Town Hall webcast to provide pre-election snapshot   10/18/2012
Tune in Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern Time for the next AHA members-only Town Hall Interactive webcast, when premier pollsters Bill McInturff and Geoff Garin join AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock and Executive Vice President Rick Pollack in providing an up-to-the minute snapshot of public opinion and trends as the election approaches. Hosted by AHA leaders, members-only Town Hall Interactive webcasts focus on advocacy and other important developments in the hospital and health care field. For more information, call (800) 424-4301.
CMS to host call on preparing physicians for ICD-10   10/18/2012
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will hold an Oct. 25 conference call on preparing physicians to implement the ICD-10 coding system for reporting patient diagnoses. Ginger Boyle, a family physician at Spartanburg (SC) Regional Healthcare System who developed a coding education program for her hospital and its family practice residency program, will share practical advice from the health system's transition to ICD-10. CMS experts also will provide an update and take questions from participants. For more information and to register for the call, click here. In August, CMS issued a final rule delaying the deadline for implementing ICD-10 diagnosis and procedure codes by one year, to Oct. 1, 2014, as recommended by the AHA.