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nbeckleyBy: Nancy J Beckley

The not-so-open-door policy still seems to be intact as there continues to be little opportunity across the country for non-hospital and non-physician providers to participate in the process that affects their business.

Some highlights from the update posted last week at the CMS RAC Web site:

Sessions scheduled in Texas, including the conference call scheduled for May 6th, the sessions in Dallas (May 13), San Antonio (May 14) and Houston (May 15) have been cancelled due to concerns over the Influenza outbreak.

The Texas Hospital Association has arranged for a recording of the CMS and Connolly Consulting presentation, as well as handouts, and they are now available on THA Website http://www.tha.org/index.asp.

You do not have to be a member of THA to access these documents, and it’s a good opportunity to take advantage of submitting a question also. Deadline to ask a question is May 22nd. Answers to the Q & A will be posted to the THA Web site in June according to THA.</p>

Back on the schedule (after disappearing on the last update) are three one-hour meetings in the CMS Atlanta Region IV Office, with one each for skilled nursing facilities, physicians and hospitals.  A postscript to this posting is the statement that the “Recovery Audit Contractor program is just one item on the agenda”.

Since my original article was published on April 22nd, I have heard from many of the non-hospital providers who were mostly unsuccessful in registering for a Provider Outreach Meeting.

Sources in California thanked the California Hospital Association that is, we believe, largely responsible for insisting that CMS also hold outreach sessions in Southern California, rather than the initial plan that called for meetings only in San Francisco.

More updates to follow.


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