May 23, 2017

Wrap-up session wanes

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Friday marked the 96th day of the Legislative Session and the third full week of the Wrap-Up Session. Though the work of the legislature has been limited to focus on K-12 funding, tax considerations and the budget, there has been little coalescing on any of these issues.

Legislative leaders have made clear their intent to first deal with tax policy, then K-12 and the budget last. But House and Senate negotiators have been unable to produce a tax proposal that is acceptable to either body, essentially stalling the session entirely. This week, legislators enter the fourth week of deliberation on these three issues and will likely surpass the 100-day mark as they head into Memorial Day weekend and could surpass the record set in 2015 for longest legislative session in Kansas history.  

During this time, committees do not meet and very few issues are debated, allowing negotiators to spend the majority of their time working towards necessary compromise.  Though the end is not yet in sight, it does appear that the restoration of KanCare provider reimbursement rates will be addressed before the legislature adjourns. Until then, we will continue to monitor the process to ensure that other issues affecting the practice of medicine do not arise unexpectedly.

For more information about legislative matters, please contact KMS Director of Government Affairs, Rachelle Colombo.


Electronic death certificate usage improves

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Kansas physicians are successfully making the transition to filing death certificates electronically, since the requirements changed January 1 of this year. The Office of Vital Statistics reports an impressive increase from fewer than 500 physicians using the VRVweb Electronic Death Record System in July 2016 to more than 2,700 users as of April 2017. Partnering organizations, the Kansas Healthcare Collaborative and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, worked with facilities across the state to coordinate training opportunities to help physicians and staff comply with the mandate. These efforts have proven successful.

The next goal is meeting CDC's directive that 80 percent of all death events be filed within 10 days. For the month of April 2017, the Office of Vital Statistics reported the highest completion month, ever, of 67.4% percent of death events being filed within 10 days. Kansas is on its way to reach the 80 percent threshold.

Beginning January 1, 2017, the state of Kansas requires that all death certificates must be filed electronically.  To comply with this statutory change, all physicians who certify death certificates must register with the Office of Vital Statistics at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.  The links for registration and training can be found on the Kansas Healthcare Collaborative website, khconline.org/news.


KFMC seeks feedback regarding KanCare

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The Kansas Foundation for Medical Care, Inc., is conducting a KanCare Provider Experience Survey on behalf of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Division of Health Care Finance. The brief survey covers a variety of provider experience questions and is designed to help ensure that the KanCare program is as responsive and provider-friendly as possible. The survey is estimated to take approximately 5 minutes to complete.

To complete the survey, visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/KanCare2017 by Friday May 26, 2017.


KanCare payment dispute process improved

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Effective May 1, 2017 the state has updated the Reconsideration and Appeals process for providers disputing a denial of payment to the KanCare Managed Care Organizations (MCOs). This is welcome news as the timeframe for the Reconsideration process is now consistent as well as optional, and extends the Appeal timeframe to 60 days – up from 30 days.

Additional information is available here:

Appeal forms and addresses for each of the MCOs are available below:

If you have questions or concerns about this process contact Ruth Cornwall, KMS Director of Health Care Finance. 


Notifications regarding MIPS status on the way

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CMS is reviewing claims and letting practices know which clinicians need to take part in MIPS, the Merit-based Incentive Payment System. MIPS is a part of the new Quality Payment Program. Sometime this month, practices should expect to receive a letter from WPS GHA the Medicare Administrative Contractor that processes Medicare Part B claims for Kansas. The letter is expected to tell the participation status of each MIPS clinician associated with the Taxpayer Identification Number.

Clinicians should participate in MIPS for the 2017 transition year if they bill more than $30,000 in Medicare Part B allowed charges a year AND provide care for more than 100 Part B-enrolled Medicare beneficiaries a year.

To learn more about the Quality Payment Program visit the CMS website or contact Ruth Cornwall, KMS Director of Health Care Finance. 


State seeks Medicaid medical director

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The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is seeking a Medicaid Medical Director (MMD). The MMD provides leadership and oversight for quality improvement and policy development, healthcare initiatives, medical review, pharmacy drug utilization and collaboration with partners.

The position is full-time but remains flexible. Qualified candidates will possess an M.D. or D.O. degree and a license to practice medicine in the state (or the ability to obtain one). To learn more about this position, contact Mike Randol, Director of the Division of Health Care Finance at Michael.Randol@ks.gov.


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