In an article written by Helen Adamopoulos (Twitter | Google+) and posted in Becker's Hospital Review on January 08, 2014, most healthcare providers and health plans haven't properly determined

K_K_logoGetting to Know the National Practitioners Data Bank (and why you hope IT does not know you) written by:  Jennifer Kirschenbaum, Esq. and Caroline Wallitt, Esq.

HealthCare.gov published Customer Service contact numbers for all Exchange Plans for practices to verify coverage.  As reported by HFMA Healthcare Business News on 12/30/13, CMS has published a database containing customer service telephone numbers for all plans on the federal exchange marketplace so that provider offices may verify coverage for patients who have not yet received ID cards.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) or stimulus act, as it is commonly referred to, has reinvented how providers use information technology. The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, a part of ARRA, calls for incentive payments to promote information technology throughout the healthcare community. Much of the billions of dollars that will go to physicians, hospitals and community health centers to help them offset the cost will be administered through Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs.

Health & Human Svcs LogoCMS has released the PQRS specifications for the 2014 reporting period and as expected, they are full of changes. Since inception, the Physician Quality Reporting System, has greatly changed the coding and documentation landscape for Eligible Professionals and Group Practices. Reporting on quality measures has become a way of life for the practicing physician.

AFFORDABLE CARE ACTThe current problems with the Affordable Care Act's health insurance exchanges should not deter doctors and medical practices from creating marketing strategies that focus specifically on the newly insured. These new and soon-to-be insured consumers differ in some fundamental ways from those currently covered, and these differences will be reflected in how their doctors and care providers are chosen.

January is the time most insurance companies restart the calculation of annual deductibles for their members. This resetting of annualJan 2014 calendar2 deductibles can mean a significant increase in patient responsibility for many practices.

In a blog posted 12/10/13 on www.physicianspractice.com, Marion K. Jenkins, PhD, FHIMSS, explains what cloud hosting for web based electronic health record solutions is, how it evolved and why it is right for healthcare. Chances are, you've heard about cloud computing but may not know much about it and how it relates to HIPAA. Here, Dr. Jenkins answers a few key questions about cloud services.

Cloud hosting — what is it?

HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices, Understanding Required Changes

By: Jennifer Kirschenbaum, Esquire

medicare-logo-png_76289_20130416-356On November 19th we reported on notices having been received by United Healthcare Medicare Advantage physicians in several states informing them they were to be dropped from the Medicare Advantage network.