News from NHLBI
NHLBI Releases Expert Panel Report on the Management of Sickle Cell Disease
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) released a draft of its Expert Panel Report on the Management of Sickle Cell Disease. The goal of the guidelines is to help people living with sickle cell disease (SCD) receive appropriate care by supporting health care professionals who provide continuity care. The draft is open for public review and comment until August 31, 2012. ASH is reviewing the Expert Panel Report as part of the open request for comments and also encourages members to provide feedback on the SCD guidelines with the NHLBI.
Hematology Measures Endorsed by NQF Board
ASH's four hematology measures were recently endorsed by the National Quality Forum's (NQF) Board of Directors, following a comprehensive review and endorsement process. The following measures, endorsed for three years, will once again be part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) in 2013 reporting year:
- Measure #0377, Myelodysplastic Syndrome and Acute Leukemias – Baseline cytogenetic testing performed on bone marrow
- Measure #0378, Myelodysplastic Syndrome – Documentation of baseline iron stores in patients receiving erythropoietin therapy
- Measure #0379, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia—Baseline flow cytometry
- Measure #0380, Multiple Myeloma Treatment with bisphosphonates
For more information about the hematology measures and other cancer measures recently endorsed by NQF, please read the August 10 NQF press release.
2012 Physician Quality Reporting System Program Reminder
It is not too late to start participating in the 2012 CMS PQRS and potentially qualify to receive an incentive payment equal to 0.5 percent of an eligible professional's total Medicare Part B allowed charges for services furnished during the reporting period. A new six-month reporting period using the registry submission option began on July 1, 2012. In addition, there are still ways to participate in the 12-month reporting period using claims, registry, or Electronic Health Record (EHR) submission. Read more.
ASH Offers PQRS Reporting Tool to Help Hematologists Obtain PQRS Bonus Payment
ASH is pleased offer a web-based tool to help hematologists obtain the 0.5 percent incentive payment for reporting quality measures on Medicare patients during calendar year 2012. The ASH-branded registry, PQRIwizardSM will assist hematologists in satisfactorily reporting data on quality measures under the CMS PQRS. The PQRIwizardSM features 25 quality measures in the areas of hematology, oncology, and general medicine, including ASH's four hematology measures on myelodysplastic syndrome, acute leukemias, multiple myeloma, and chronic lymphocytic leukemia. The PQRIwizardSM is similar to online tax preparation software and will make reporting easier. The cost of PQRIwizardSM is $299. Read more.
News from CMS
CMS Issues Stage 2 Meaningful Use Final Rule
On August 23, CMS issued its final rule on requirements that hospitals and other providers must meet to receive funding under the second phase of the federal electronic health record incentive program. The Stage 2 "meaningful-use" requirements will go into effect in early 2014, according to the final rule. The final rule also provides a flexible reporting period for 2014 to give providers sufficient time to adopt or upgrade to the latest EHR technology certified for 2014. Read more.
500 Primary Care Practices Announced for CMS Innovation Center Initiative
The CMS Innovation Center has selected five hundred primary care practices to participate in the Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative. Under the Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative, CMS will pay primary care practices a care management fee to support enhanced, coordinated services on behalf of Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries. Simultaneously, participating commercial, state, and other federal insurance plans are also offering enhanced payment to primary care practices that are designed to support them in providing high-quality primary care on behalf of their members. This four year public-private partnership is designed to test a model of improved access to quality health care at lower costs. One of the key components of the initiative is to coordinate care with other health care providers and make decisions as a team. The 500 practices were selected through a competitive application process and will start delivering enhanced health care services this fall. More information about the Comprehensive Primary Care initiative is available on the Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative website.
News from ASH
Register for ASH's September Webinar on Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia
Registration is open for the ASH webinar on Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia, scheduled for Thursday, September 20, 2012, at 8:00 p.m., ET. One of the most important issues associated with the early diagnosis and acute management of idiopathic autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA) is the communication between the blood banker and the hematologist. Diagnosis followed by acute and chronic management of AIHA involves the use of appropriate diagnostics to suspect, confirm, and manage the treatment of patients with AIHA. ASH is grateful to The Henry Loring Masters Foundation for providing support for the development and distribution of this valuable webinar. For more information on this and other ASH webinars, visit the ASH website.
Register for ASH's 2nd Consultative Hematology Course
Register for the second Consultative Hematology Course, being held this year in Chicago on September 28, prior to the 2012 ASH State-of-the-Art Symposium (SAS). This intensive half-day program focuses on updates in non-malignant hematology designed for practitioners who are trained as hematologists or hematologist-oncologists, but now periodically see patents with non-malignant hematologic conditions. Experts will use case-based presentations to stimulate interactive discussions. Visit the ASH Website for more details about the program and to register.
Register for the 2012 ASH State-of-the-Art Symposium: Recent Advances in Hematologic Malignancies
Register today for the ASH State-of-the-Art Symposium (SAS). SAS is taking place in two locations this year – Chicago on September 28-29 and Los Angeles on October 12-13. This clinically focused meeting has no competing sessions and boasts a small attendee-to-speaker ratio allowing for plenty of interaction with the speakers and your colleagues. Take advantage of this opportunity to ask our distinguished speakers about new treatment approaches, solutions for your challenging cases, or diagnosis and management of hematologic malignancies. This year's program will have a special focus on thrombosis. Visit www.hematology.org/sas for the full program schedule, hotel accommodations, and registration information.
Join us for the premier hematology event of the year!
In a continuing effort to improve and enhance the ASH annual meeting experience, each year the Society adds new sessions and programs. The new and enhanced offerings introduced this year promise to make the meeting exciting and unique. They will include extended schedules for the Education Program, enhanced small interactive sessions with experts, featuring "How I Treat: Bringing Science to Clinical Dilemmas" discussion, and more. Advance registration and housing is now open; register today to join your colleagues for the 54th ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition on December 8-11 in Atlanta, GA.
Take Advantage of ASH's Consult a Colleague Service
Consult a Colleague is a service for ASH members that helps facilitate the exchange of information between hematologists and their peers. The full list of available categories is below:
- Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation
- Lymphoproliferative Disorders
- Multiple Myeloma & Waldenström's Macroglobulinemia
- Myeloproliferative Disorders
- Myelodysplastic Syndromes
To learn more or to submit a request, visit www.hematology.org/consult. Assigned Colleagues will respond to inquiries within two business days either by email or phone.
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