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Category Archives: Health

CMS Region 7 Update

March 13, 2017

View the update.

MLNConnects Newsletter

March 13, 2017

View the announcements.

WPS GHS Medicare eNews

March 9, 2017

In Person Events

All Provider Education
A Day with Medicare

April 25, 2017 – Saint Charles, MO – 8:30 am – 4:30 pm CT
July 11, 2017 – Salina, KS – 8:30 am – 4:30 pm CT
July 13, 2017 – Des Moines, IA – 8:30 am – 4:30 pm CT

Don’t Miss This FREE Full Day Educational Opportunity!WPS GHA is pleased to announce a full day educational event designed for providers and suppliers of all types. The multi-breakout sessions will allow providers to pick topics they are interested in. This exciting program includes both Part A and Part B topics to gain insight into the cause for errors and how to avoid them in the future, including:

  • General session
  • 12 breakout sessions
  • Question and answer session
  • More!

To view the brochure click on the link provided, or use the following URL:


Rural Health Information Hub

March 2, 2017

View the Rural Health Information Hub updates.

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

March 8, 2017

What’s New

National Committee Reports on Social Determinants of Health.  The National Advisory Committee on Rural Health and Human Services delivered its most recent policy brief to the Secretary of HHS, reporting on the broad range of factors that affect health outcomes in rural areas.  The committee examined these factors – poverty, access to services, economic opportunity, rates of chronic disease, homelessness, domestic violence, life expectancy – and reports that there are distinct rural considerations that policymakers must keep in mind.  Members of the committee will discuss their report in a 60-minute webinar hosted by the Rural Health Information Hub next Tuesday, March 14.

CMS State Innovation Models.  The State Innovation Models (SIM) Initiative supports state governments with funding and technical assistance allowing them to design and test strategies that meet the goals of higher quality/lower cost health care delivery in a way that’s tailored to the needs of their state’s residents. Through two rounds of funding, the SIM Initiative has created federal-state partnerships with 34 states, three territories and the District of Columbia.  CMS has considered input from many rural stakeholders in shaping the initiative and earlier this year, announced the Pennsylvania Rural Health Model as one that potentially creates predictable funding to cover services for rural hospitals.

Rural Poverty and Well-being.  USDA’s Economic Research Service expands on its annual Rural America at a Glance with a more focused look at the economic, social and demographic factors that affect income and poverty of rural residents and their participation in Federal assistance programs.


Wipfli Alerts & Updates: ObamaCare Replacement Bill Eliminates Taxes and Replaces Mandates With Incentives

March 7, 2017

View the updates.

FORHP, Rural Health Policy, and You – Feb 2017 update

March 7, 2017


Fact Sheet:  New Accountable Care Organization Model Opportunity: Medicare ACO Track 1+ Model

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released additional details on the Medicare Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Track 1+ model, which is one in a series of Innovation Center initiatives that will expand opportunities for clinicians to participate in Advanced APMs under MACRA. This ACO model incorporates more downside risk than is currently present in Track 1 of the Medicare Shared Savings Program and is designed to help small practices move toward performance-based risk and to allow small hospitals, including rural, to participate.

The Track 1+ ACO Model includes some aspects of the Track 2 and 3 models, such as prospective beneficiary assignment; the introduction of downside risk (although lower than Track 3); and the option to request a Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) 3-Day Rule. ACOs would be able to share in savings up to a maximum 50 percent shared savings rate based on quality performance, and there is a fixed 30 percent loss-sharing rate. The maximum level of downside risk would vary based on the composition of ACOs, with lower levels of risk potentially available to qualifying physician-only ACOs and/or ACOs that include small rural hospitals.

Additional information about the application process is forthcoming, but organizations interested in applying should plan to submit the required Notice of Intent to Apply (NOIA) in May 2017.