Case Review Connections
Post-acute Care Edition
Issue 31: September 2022
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Kepro has videos for healthcare providers, to help with their day-to-day work, and for people who have Medicare, to share about our free services.
Watch a video to learn more about Kepro's Case Status tool that you can use to track an appeal that has been filed.
join us for a webinar
Join our Outreach staff for an informative webinar about Kepro on Tuesday, September 27, 2022. The webinar will provide basic information about the services that Kepro offers for Medicare beneficiaries:
- Quality of care complaints,
- Appeals, and
- Immediate Advocacy services.
If you have difficulty registering, send an email to QIOCommunications@kepro.com.
september is healthy aging month
Get information on prevention and how to manage ongoing health conditions focused on physical and mental health. From exercise tips to diet and nutrition, this is your one-stop shop for caring for yourself and loved ones.
Health for older adults:
in this issue:
medical director's corner - jessica whitley, md, mba
In the last Medical Director’s column (July), the first four goals of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) National Quality Strategy were examined in detail. In this column, the final four goals will be reviewed.
- Strengthen resiliency. With this goal, CMS wants to make sure that the health care system is prepared for and is able to adapt to challenges such as COVID-19. They are developing metrics, quality assurance and improvement programs, conditions of participation, and other actions to evaluate this goal. One of the ways that CMS showed resilience during the pandemic was the use of waivers and other flexibilities.
- Embrace the digital age. With this goal, CMS hopes to ensure timely and secure communication and care coordination between providers, plans, payers, and patients across the care continuum to achieve desired outcomes and provide patients direct access to their information. An example of a current digital innovation is how CMS has been moving forward with telehealth.
- Incentivize innovation and technology adoption to drive care improvements. With this goal, CMS will ensure that scientific data and evidence from all populations served will drive decisions. A recent example of CMS innovation is a new model that CMS is testing to improve cancer care for Medicare patients.
- Increasing alignment. This goal is to align performance metrics, quality improvement efforts, programs, policy, and payment to improve value without being compounded by needless duplication. This includes striving to create a national picture of quality measurement to is understandable to individuals, providers, and payers. CMS has an Office of Burden Reduction and Health Informatics (OBRHI) that focuses on reducing administrative burden and advancing interoperability and national standards.
For more information about the National Quality Strategy, visit the CMS website. The vision for the strategy is that implementing these goals will assure that all persons receive equitable, high quality, and value-based care.
appeals: case status tool
The Case Status tool is available on Kepro’s website to check the status of a hospital discharge or service termination appeal.
When a beneficiary files an appeal, a case number will be assigned. That number can be placed in the tool, and steps 1-8 will appear to explain where the case is during the process.
Kepro has a YouTube video to explain the process in detail.
immediate advocacy success story
Immediate Advocacy is an informal process in which the BFCC-QIO acts as a liaison for people with Medicare to quickly resolve an oral complaint. Kepro would like to share success stories with providers to show how Immediate Advocacy can benefit providers by resolving problems quickly, which leads to improved patient relations.
A beneficiary’s representative contacted Kepro with concerns about her sister’s hospice care. The beneficiary was physically and mentally disabled. The hospice staff that came during the week was doing a good job; however, the weekend staff was not showing up and not calling. She called the hospice many times one weekend just to reach someone. She reached out to Kepro for some assistance in resolving this concern.
Kepro’s Clinical Care Coordinator (CCC) contacted the administrator of the hospice and explained the concerns. The administrator noted that the weekends had a smaller staff, but that not coming was unacceptable. She said she would be addressing this with staff and would investigate the concerns during a muti-disciplinary meeting. She also stated that she would evaluate the beneficiary’s situation to see if more services/hours are needed or if there are any additional outside resources that may be available. The administrator stated that she would personally contact the representative to go over the concerns and see what would be the best path forward to address them. The CCC then contacted the representative to let her know the outcome, and she was very pleased with Kepro’s assistance.
rural health: rural emergency hospitals
There is a new provider type that has been established for rural communities, known as rural emergency hospitals. This new type of rural hospital will become effective January 1, 2023, and will provide needed access to care for rural communities. For more information, view the CMS press release.
On our new Aging Health Matters podcast, we have an episode that explores the challenges of living in a rural community for Medicare beneficiaries and those who care for them. (will link to rural health podcast)
Kepro’s Outreach Specialists are available for joint presentations, quarterly staff trainings, webinars, conference calls, and advisory boards. There is no charge for their services. Visit Kepro’s partner page for details.
We also have resources available for providers and partners to educate about Kepro’s services.
For more information about Kepro’s Outreach services, listen to our Outreach podcast.
Publication No.R146810-256-9/2022. This material was prepared by Kepro, a Medicare Quality Improvement Organization under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents presented do not necessarily reflect CMS policy.