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Category Archives: Webinar

Rural Health Information Hub Webinar: Recording Now Available Online

March 6, 2017

Thank you for participating in the Rural Health Information Hub’s webinar, Rural Mortality and Preventable Deaths – Insights from the CDC MMWR Rural Health Series.

The video recording is now available on the RHIhub website and the transcript will be posted in the next couple of days.

We also ask that you please complete a short survey so that we may continue to enhance our webinars. The survey will take 3-5 minutes of your time, but the feedback that you provide is invaluable to us.

Once again, thank you for your participation.
Rural Health Information Hub

Free Webinar Series Offered from ACU

March 2, 2017

The ACU is offering a series of 4 webinars this spring (see attached flyer).  Webinars are free and open to anyone, you don’t have to be a member of ACU to participate.

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

February 24, 2017

Rural Mortality and Preventable Deaths – Insights from the CDC MMWR Rural Health Series

Wednesday March 1, 2017 from 11:00 am – 12:30 pm ET.

To Register:

Rural Health Information Hub (RHIHub), in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, will be hosting a webinar to highlight the new CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) Rural Health Series.  The first report released by CDC in the rural health series demonstrates that Americans living in rural areas are more likely to die from five leading causes than their urban counterparts are.

First, we will have the opportunity to hear from two of CDC’s lead authors, Dr. Moy and Dr. Garcia, who will discuss the recently reported mortality data from a national perspective and the rural-urban disparities.  They will also discuss the contributing factors associated with the leading causes of death and ways that these potentially excess deaths may be prevented.

Second, we will have the opportunity to hear from a long-standing FORHP grantee, Dr. McKnight, who will share the story of the Fit for Life program, implemented in rural Ohio over a decade ago.  Fit for Life has been successful in improving the health outcomes of program participants by addressing a number of the risk factors contributing to the leading causes of death as cited by CDC.

We look forward to having you all join us on the webinar to engage in this important discussion!  To register for this event, please visit: .

Featured Speakers:

Tom Morris, MPA, Director of the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (moderator)

Ernest Moy, MD, MPH, Medical Officer in the Office of Analysis and Epidemiology at the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)

Macarena Garcia, DrPH, Senior Health Scientist at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services (CSELS), Office of the Director

Timothy KcKnight, MD, Board Certified Family Practitioner and Founder of Trinity Hospital Twin City’s Fit for Life Program

Webinar Reminder – CAHs and RACs – Compliant Coding and Billing – March 16

February 24, 2017

CAHs and RHCs: Compliant Coding and Billing

Rural health clinics and critical access hospitals are both special types of Medicare providers. RHCs recently have started using CPT/HCPCS codes for their claims, which, has generated a number of questions surrounding the concept of a visit. For Medicare, RHCs are paid through an all-inclusive rate that is driven by the charges made for a visit.

CAHs also have a special mechanism for gaining additional reimbursement for outpatient physician services, known as the Method II billing process. For CAHs that have provider-based clinics or otherwise have physicians providing outpatient services, there is the possibility of gaining increased reimbursement. Of course, for both RHCs and CAHs, there are a host of compliance concerns surrounding proper coding and billing. This workshop addresses both the RHC use of CPT/HCPCS codes and Method II billing for CAHs. Learn more.

Thursday, March 16, 2017
10 – 11:30 a.m.
Register Now – on or before Monday, March 13

FORHP Announcements – February 14

January 14, 2017

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

What’s New

Flexibility for Transportation Services.  The Office of the Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services recently issued a final rule that eases the ability to provide free or discounted transportation services for health care.  Under the rule, Federal health care programs arranging service from local transportation providers are granted a “safe harbor” exemption from the anti-kickback statute, which prohibits offering, soliciting or accepting of any type of remuneration for referral to a federal health care program business. Thus, the rule allows for federal health care providers to make financial arrangements with local transportation providers when carrying patients to and from the patient’s home for up to 50 miles in rural areas (air, luxury, or ambulance transportation excluded).

Funding Opportunities

AI/AN Health Equity Initiative – April 3.  Up to seven American Indian and/or Alaska Native organizations will be awarded federal funding of up to $350, 000 for programs that address the negative health impact of violence and substance abuse for AI/AN adolescents.  Studies suggest the incorporation of traditional cultures and engaging youth in Native teachings as an effective public health approach.  Successful applicants will implement promising practices for culturally-appropriate services and build capacity for healthcare professionals serving AI/AN youth.


FORHP Announcements – January 31

January 31, 2017

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

What’s New

Medicare ACO Track 1+ ModelCMS offers new details on the Medicare Accountable Care Organization Track 1+ model, which will begin in 2018. The model will qualify as an advanced alternative payment model under the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act by incorporating more downside risk than is currently present in Track 1 of the Medicare Shared Savings Program.  It is designed to help small practices move toward performance-based risk and to allow small hospitals, including rural, to participate.   

Request for MACPAC Nominations  – February 24. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) is requesting nominations for new members to the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC). The U.S. Comptroller General appoints MACPAC’s 17 commissioners, who come from diverse regions across the United States and bring broad expertise and a wide range of perspectives on Medicaid and CHIP, review Medicaid and CHIP access payment policies, and make recommendations to Congress. Appointments take effect May 1, 2017.

Request for MedPAC Nominations – March 10:  The GAO is also accepting nominations for Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) appointments that will be effective May 1, 2017. MedPAC is an independent congressional agency that advises the U.S. Congress on issues affecting the Medicare program and is also tasked with analyzing access to care, quality of care, and other issues affecting Medicare. This is an opportunity for rural providers and stakeholders to submit nominations for MedPAC members who can bring their perspective and expertise on the financing and delivery of health care services in rural areas.


FORHP Announcements – January 13, 2017

January 18, 2017

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

What’s New

CDC: Rural Americans at Higher Risk of Death.  On Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a study on the five leading causes of death in rural America, the first in a series of reports on the disparities that create “a striking gap in health between rural and urban Americans, ” according to CDC Director Tom Frieden.

Factors contributing to the decline in rural life expectancy include demographic, environmental, economic, and social factors, many of which CDC will examine as part of a series of rural-focused Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports.  The MMWR delivers objective, scientific public health data and recommendations each week to state health departments and more than 250,000 electronic subscribers.  The rural-focused MMWRs represent a significant focus on rural issues by the CDC and will be a feature in the FORHP Announcements this year.  The increasing mortality in rural areas was also a topic of a recent report from the National Advisory Committee on Rural Health and Human Services.

New Rural Health Model in Pennsylvania.  Also on Thursday, the CMS Innovation Center announced a new model opened to test the predictability of global budgets for rural hospitals in Pennsylvania and determine if they enable services tailored to the needs of local communities. Under this Model, monthly payments made by Medicare fee-for-service and all other participating payers would be based on a fixed amount for inpatient and outpatient services. In addition, rural hospitals would be allowed to redesign delivery to invest in quality measures and preventive care in a way that meets their patients’ needs. The funding will be used to oversee the Model, collect and analyze data, and provide technical assistance toward several targets, including increasing access to care, reducing rural health disparities and decreasing deaths from substance use.