EDPMA Action Alert: Medicaid Parity

From EDPMA:

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides that qualifying primary care physicians be reimbursed at Medicare rates when providing primary care to Medicaid patients through December 31, 2014.    Because primary care is defined to include some Emergency Department codes and some EDPMA physician groups have qualifying primary care physicians on staff, EDPMA is urging an extension of Medicaid Parity for Primary Care.

We urge you to call your representative in the U.S. House of Representatives and urge him or her to cosponsor both H.R. 5353 and H.R. 5364 which extend Medicaid Parity for Primary Care for a few more years.  Even if your group or clients do not currently have qualifying primary care physicians on staff, these bills would set a strong precedent for expanding Medicaid parity to other circumstances in the future.

If you are asked why they should cosponsor these bills, you can explain that allowing the parity provision to expire would endanger the progress made in improving access to care for Medicaid patients.   About 7.2 million new Medicaid beneficiaries have enrolled in Medicaid since the ACA was passed.

The time to act is now.  Medicaid Parity for Primary Care is set to expire at the end of the calendar year.

In order to identify your U.S. Representative and find his or her contact information, please go to www.house.gov and type in your zip code in the upper right corner of the page.

Note that we are not asking you to call your senators at this time because the Senate version of these bills would amend current law by excluding care provided in the Emergency Department.

Mental health straining emergency care

From MyFox8:

Beds that would typically go to emergency room patients are sometimes being used to house the mentally ill before they can be sent to a mental health hospital.

At Annie Penn Hospital in Reidsville, besides the hundreds of patients each day who need emergency medical care, there is a growing number coming in with non-medical emergencies.

“Psychotic patients, schizophrenia. It just varies,” said Susan Owens, emergency department assistant director.

Naked patient who spat in medic’s face at Easton Hospital pleads guilty

From MCall:

Cheeseboro had charged out of his room at the emergency department and spat in the face of city paramedic Jason Carita, who was in uniform.

The naked Cheeseboro “caused alarm” to other patients, with staff forced to close a set of sliding glass doors to limit his exposure to others.

Meet the simple app that will make South African emergency rooms better

From htxt.aftricast:

Can a cheap tablet make township hospital’s more efficient? Dr Yaseen Khan of the Open Medicine Project South Africa certainly thinks so. His organisation has just finished trialling a simple new app called Mobile Triage at the Khayelitsha Hospital in the Western Cape and found that it can improve early diagnosis in the emergency room and speed up time to complete triage by up to 50%.

According to Dr Khan, waiting times in the Western Cape are currently up top eight hours long and as many as a quarter of all patients are misdiagnosed during triage. Khan says that 88% more patients actually complete the triage stage, and with more comprehensive diagnoses, than before.

The app is designed for healthcare workers in a low tech environment, where it’s hooked up to a label printer. And that’s it.

Car crashes into ER

From the Globe:

When officers arrived, Rooney said, the medical staff of the Highland Avenue hospital was already caring for the driver. The extent of the driver’s injuries was not immediately released. No other injuries were reported.

Regional Emergency Medical Services Authority doubles down on community paramedics

From the Gazette-Journal:

What happens when you turn paramedics into caregivers and divert patients in ambulances away from the emergency room?

Apparently, you save millions of dollars.

More accurately, you save $10.5 million in area healthcare expenditures for three years, according to Regional Emergency Medical Services Authority.

Eight Percent of Children Account for 24% of Emergency Room Visits

From Healthcare Professionals Network:

Eight percent of children account for nearly one-quarter of emergency department visits and 31% of costs, according to a study published online Sept. 15 in Pediatrics.

The researchers found that 8% of children with 4 or more emergency department visits accounted for 24% of all visits and 31% ($1.4 billion) of all costs.

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