Events, Conferences, and Announcements for June 30


Our friend, James Bush, MD shared with us the fact that on May 30, 2017, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Vermont, the Department of Justice and the HHS OIG announced that eClinical Works (eCW) and some of its employees will pay a total of $155 million to resolve a False Claims Act lawsuit alleging that eCW misrepresented the capabilities of its software. The U.S. Department of Justice issued a press release detailing the situation, and the full HHS OIG settlement agreement report is available here.

CMS has issued an FAQ to provide guidance for Medicare providers that is also relevant to State Medicaid Agencies. Additionally, CMS advises that this is an issue being handled between HHS, DOJ, and eCW, and that individual providers should not be penalized or singled out for audit.

The AMA met in June and more than 100 medical staff leaders from across the country gathered June 8–10 in Chicago to network, attend education sessions and discuss policy. Here’s a top-level look at some of the issues discussed.

  • Policy issues: secret balloting procedures for medical staffs, non-punitive reporting of quality issues, system approaches to medical staff governance, EHR certification and more.
  • Education session topics: emerging issues in medical staff affairs, physician burnout, the link between patient-provider communication and quality, employment contracts and physician use of social media (see coverage in AMA Wire®)
  • Adopted by the AMA House of Delegates at the 2017 AMA Annual Meeting (Board of Trustees Report 9), “Medical Staff Rights and Responsibilities” outlines the fundamental rights and responsibilities of the medical staff as a whole and of its individual members.

Visit the AMA-OMSS Annual Meeting webpage to download policy proceedings and education session presentations. And please help us share the knowledge and resources from our meeting with your medical staff using the AMA-OMSS Annual Meeting summary presentation.


RT Welter and Associates posted its monthly newsletter, which includes a host of 2018 ICD-10 Changes. In a later post, the share news that Anthem Blue Cross will participate in the Colorado 2018 Health Insurance Exchange, as well as tips on staff recruitment.

KEPRO is a quality improvement organization and is seeking your feedback on the development of a Person and Family Engagement initiative. The focus of the project is to help Medicare beneficiaries and families improve their understanding of their health care and have a positive experience when receiving medical care or being discharged from a hospital or skilled services. Click here to participate in the survey.

The National Council for Certified Dementia Practitioners offers its 2017 NODONA National Conference July 14-19 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Our Friends of the WMS Program participants The Doctors Company have sent us a post in which they discuss the six steps recommended in getting MACRA-ready. It is called, MACRA is A Marathon Not A Sprint, Get Started Now.

The National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project (NHSAP) has released an article, Teenagers: Sleep Patterns and School Performance, which discusses normal sleep patterns, sleep importance and sleep durations for teenagers. We are contacting you as the content may be of interest to your members. We invite you to share this article with your members in an effort to promote sleep health with patients. The National Health Sleep Awareness Project is a cooperative agreement between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. The goal of the NHSAP is to increase public awareness of the importance of healthy sleep through the Healthy People 2020 initiative.

The MLN Connects publication from CMS has sent a couple of editions since we last sent out an update. The May 15 MLN Connects edition features posts on MIPS Performance Categories, Chronic Care Management Services and more. The June 22 edition offers posts on Quality Payment Programs, as well as Hospice QRP, coding guidance.

DPC Journal has a number of new stories on its website. Among them were a new run towards DPC 3.0 and more.

Webinars and Conferences

Join Mountain-Pacific Quality Health, CDC expert Dr. Katherine Fleming-Dutra and your fellow health care professionals for this virtual collaborative kick-off, where we will discuss how to implement the Core Elements of Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship. The webinar is scheduled from 1-2 p.m. on July 19.

The American Academy of Addiction Psychology points out applications to receive travel awards to defray the costs of travel, lodging, and meeting registration are due August 1. Click here for more information on that program. To reserve a room for the meeting, click here.