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California Oncology Weekly Newsletter 11.26.2016

The California Dialogue on Cancer (CDOC) announces the upcoming webinar:  Tobacco Cessation in Cancer Prevention and Treatment:  A Call to Action for California Cancer Centers, Wednesday, December 7th, 12:00pm to 1 pm.  This webinar will be presented by Elisa Tong, MD, from the University of California Davis, along with California’s Comprehensive Cancer Control Program Director, Shauntay Davis, MPH.  For more information click here.

CMA & AMA are co-hosting an educational seminar on MACRA in San Francisco on Saturday, Dec 10th at 9:00 – 11:00am.  There is no cost to attend this seminar. For more information click here.

Last week’s California Oncology Weekly shared that Noridian would like to solicit your assistance in shaping their customer service offerings – now and into the future – and are hoping you will help them. They want to hear from providers if their current offerings are meeting the needs of the provider community and, importantly, would like to hear your ideas on how they can continue to meet those needs into the future. For more information click here.

In 2017, CMS will apply a downward payment adjustment to those who did not satisfactorily report PQRS in 2015.  If you have any questions regarding the status of your 2015 PQRS reporting or are concerned about potentially receiving the PQRS downward payment adjustment in 2017, please do not hesitate to submit an informal review request. CMS will be in contact with every individual EP or PQRS group practice that submits a request for an informal review of their 2015 PQRS data.  For more information click here.

Register for the inaugural ASCO Oncology Practice Conference, an educational meeting focused on the business of cancer care, being held March 2, 2017 in Orlando. For more information click here.

To view the complete California Oncology Weekly Newsletter, click on the date below.

November 29, 2016

The California Medical Association has published a summary of the most significant new health laws of interest to physicians. For more information click here.

Noridian would like to solicit their providers’ assistance in shaping their customer service offerings – now and into the future – and are hoping you will help them. They want to hear from providers if their current offerings are meeting the needs of the provider community and, importantly, would like to hear your ideas on how they can continue to meet those needs into the future. Noridian strives to deliver that information in “easy to use” approaches and by means that meet the needs of the provider community. For more information click here.

There are updates to the MAC system changes, as needed, the Claim Status and Claim Status Category Codes used for the Accredited Standards Committee (ASC) X12 276/277 Health Care Claim Status Request and Response and ASC X12 277 Health Care Claim Acknowledgment transactions. For more information click here.

The CMS wants to end billions in supplemental funding that helped safety net and Medicaid providers care for the poorest people.  Pass-through payments are paid to Medicaid managed care plans as “add-ons” to the base capitation rate. The plans are required to pass through these payments to contracted providers who often treat a disproportionate share of Medicaid or uninsured patients with complex or costly cases. For more information click here.

The American Medical Association (AMA) is providing free educational programs to help physicians understand the new Quality Payment Program under MACRA. A webinar has been scheduled for December. For more information click here.

To view the complete California Oncology Weekly Newsletter click on the link below. For more information click here.

November 22, 2016

The California Supreme Court today ruled that health plans cannot absolve themselves of the responsibility to pay claims for emergency care by non-contracted providers by negligently delegating that responsibility to a risk bearing organization that it knows—or should have known—to be financially insolvent. For more information click here.

The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will hold its first Access Assessment Advisory Committee meeting on Friday, November 18, 2016, from 9 am – 3 pm in Sacramento. California’s Medi-Cal 2020 1115 Waiver Special Terms and Conditions require DHCS to conduct an Access to Care Assessment (Assessment). DHCS is working with its External Quality Review Organization to conduct the Assessment, which will evaluate primary, core specialty, and facility access to care for Medi-Cal managed care beneficiaries. As a part of the Assessment process, the State established an Advisory Committee that includes representatives from consumer advocacy organizations, providers/provider associations, health plans/health plan associations, and legislative staff. For more information click here.

Bipartisan lawmakers hope to continue funding for the Precision Medicine Initiative and Cancer Moonshot by passing the 21st Century Cures legislation in the lame-duck Congress. The 21st Century Cures Act would provide $9 million in funding for new medical research, including provisions to support the Cancer Moonshot and Precision Medicine Initiative. For more information click here.

UnitedhHealthcare Network Bulletin (November 2016) is now available online and features articles about eligibilityLink and claimsLink Rollout, Virtual Card Payment Option for Electronic Payments and Statements, Treatment for Members with Substance Abuse Disorder. For more information click here.

The 58th ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition is only a month away. Learn about the most significant scientific discoveries in hematology and how these discoveries impact clinical practice, at the 58th ASH Annual Meeting & Exposition. December 3-6, 2016 in San Diego. For more information click here.

To view the complete California Oncology Weekly Newsletter click on the date below.

November 15, 2016

Calling it a classic “bait and switch,” a California consumer group, last week, lashed out at Anthem Blue Cross of California, claiming it failed to adequately warn customers they were being shifted in 2017 to brand-new, stripped-down plans. Santa Monica-based Consumer Watchdog announced it has filed a class action lawsuit against the health insurance giant after Anthem moved hundreds of thousands of its Preferred Provider Organization customers to Exclusive Provider Organization plans for 201.  For more information click here.

The CMA’s Practice Resources (CPR) for November is now available  and includes articles entitled: CMA publishes FAQ and hosts webinar on new law to end “surprise billing”; Blue Shield fee schedule changes effective December 1; Know Your Rights: Timely filing denials; and, The Coding Corner: Under-coding isn’t a solution, it’s a potential compliance liability. For more information click here.

Doctors, hospitals and health care advocacy groups are hoping two November ballot measures will do what they’ve been unable to do at the state Capitol: Bring more money to California’s health care program for the poor. The industry groups have tried for years to get more state funding for Medi-Cal – California’s version of Medicaid. For more information click here.

The Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC) is again spearheading a large group sign on letter calling for repeal of IPAB, similar to efforts conducted in previous years.  In order to make the most impact, the goal is to exceed the number of signers on the previous group sign-on letter, which most recently had over 530 signers.  We have kept the language in the letter the same as the last letter and only made one change by removing a sentence due to outdated statistics. For more information click here.

Finalized on November 2nd, the  2017 Physician’s Fee Schedule Published by CMS will be implemented January 1, 2017.  In addition to physicians, a variety of practitioners and entities are paid under the physician fee schedule. The annual Physician Fee Schedule updates payment policies, payment rates, and quality provisions for services provided in CY 2017. For more information click here.

The 58th ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition is only a month away. Learn about the most significant scientific discoveries in hematology and how these discoveries impact clinical practice, at the 58th ASH Annual Meeting & Exposition. December 3-6, 2016 in San Diego. For more information click here.

To view the complete California Oncology Weekly Newsletter, click on the date below.

November 8, 2016

In preparation for next week’s election, the California Chamber of Commerce has pulled together all things election-related.
•    A review of the requirements for giving employees time off for voting.
•    The do’s and dont’s of political communications to employees.
•    A sample message for sharing CalChamber positions with employees.
•    Top-level overview of what’s at stake in the state legislative races.
•    CalChamber positions on the November propositions.
•    CalChamber special report on the November ballot measures. For more information click here.

The Community Oncology Alliance (COA) has released a fax from CVS informing physicians of CVS’ reversal regarding in office physician dispensing of drugs. CVS is not going ahead with its plans to force dispensing practices out of network effective 1/17.  Note reference to enrollment in other plans.  For more information click here.

Take a look! Watch “5 Doctors on MACRA!”
As part of a grass roots effort to fight MACRA and its devastating consequences, physicians discussed their concerns on video.
CMS “dropped” the final rules just over a week ago and despite some “softening,” MACRA poses a huge threat to solo and small group practice physicians of becoming financially insolvent. For more information click here.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) with the MLN Connects® call invites you to join a webinar November 15 on Quality Payment Program Final Rule 10:30am to 12:00pm Pacific Time. For more information click here.

Starting in November, join select 2017 ASH Meeting on Hematologic Malignancies (MHM) Program Planning Committee members and speakers for a free, five-part series previewing content from the core malignant hematology themes covered during the meeting–leukemia, lymphoma, myelodysplastic syndromes, myeloma, and myeloproliferative neoplasms. For more information click here.

To view the complete California Oncology Weekly Newsletter click on the date below.

November 1, 2016