Quality Insights Renal Network 4 
A Periodic Newsletter from Quality Insights Renal Network 4 | www.qirn4.org
In This Issue
Alerts and Recalls
Quick Links
QIRN 4 Staff
Executive Director
Quality Improvement Director
Quality Improvement Coordinator
Patient Services Director
Patient Services Coordinator
Data Manager
Administrative Assistant
September 23, 2014 
Greetings from QIRN 4
Quality Insights Renal Network 4 (QIRN 4) is committed to providing valuable resources that help improve the quality of renal care in Pennsylvania and Delaware. 
We encourage you to visit our Web site for the most up-to-date information or to contact us with questions, comments or suggestions. 
IMPORTANT NOTE: In an effort to bring you the most important information in the most convenient way, we have started to send our newsletter on a bi-weekly basis. Look for important updates about alerts and recalls, Quality Incentive Program news, Infection Prevention updates, and much more in your inbox every other week. 

*This will serve as our primary method of communicating important news and updates. 
Your QIRN 4 Team
Mark Your Calendars: Upcoming Events
Mandatory Network Council Meeting
September 24, 2014 from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m.

  • Tish Lawson, Executive Director will present a brief Network update
  • Terry Holland, Transplant Coordinator from Penn Transplant Institute will present on UNOS Kidney Allocation Policy Changes
Each facility is to have a network council representative on the call. Thank you for your participation.

Webinar Information:

Meeting Password: meeting

Teleconference: 866-951-1151. Teleconference access code: 5505276. Please join us 15 minutes prior to the presentation to ensure the automatic system set-up has been properly established.

Attendee Instructions:
  1. Click or Copy and Paste this to your web browser: https://qualitynet.webex.com
  2. Locate the event you wish to join
  3. Click on Join Now (located to the right of the event title)
  4. Enter your name and email address as prompted
  5. Enter the password: meeting
  6. Dial in to the teleconference. The number is 866-951-1151. The access code is 5505276.
If you have any questions or problems accessing the meeting, please call the General Dynamics Information Technology WebEx Helpline at 540-347-7400 x390.

Cannulation Crossroads (Eastern PA)
October 16, 2014
Giant Super Food Store
315 York Road
Willow Grove, PA 19090


Mini Cannulation Crossroads (Western PA)
Presented by Diane Peck, RN CNN
Nurse Education Manager
Lifeline Vascular Access
October 5, 2014

Diane Peck is one of the speakers for the 35th Annual Horizons in Dialysis event held at the Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Champion, PA. See the brochure for registration information and other presentations.


Great Work Happening at Geisinger
The following story was recently featured on the Healthcare Informatics website. Learn more about how Geisinger, an integrated health system serving more than 3.5 million people, is paving the path to patient empowerment.  

Prior Authorization of Repetitive Scheduled Non-Emergent Ambulance Transport
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will begin implementing a prior authorization demonstration program  for repetitive scheduled non-emergent ambulance transport in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina. CMS will test whether prior authorization helps reduce expenditures, while maintaining or improving quality of care. CMS believes using a prior authorization process will help ensure services are provided in compliance with applicable Medicare coverage, coding, and payment rules before services are rendered and claims are paid.  

Prior authorization will not create new clinical documentation requirements. Instead, it will require the same information necessary to support Medicare payment, just earlier in the process.  Prior authorization allows providers and suppliers to address issues with claims prior to rending services and to avoid an appeal process. This will help ensure that all relevant coverage, coding, and clinical documentation requirements are met before the service is rendered to the beneficiary and before the claim is submitted for payment.

CMS Readies Demo to Slow Ambulance Payment Fraud
The following story was recently featured in Nephrology News. Read about how the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is preparing to launch a pilot study this fall in three states that would require prior authorization of ambulance transport services before a contractor can bill Medicare.

Emergency Preparedness Updates
Submit Your Disaster Preparedness Articles
Our focus at QIRN 4 is to "Be Disaster Aware, Take Action to Prepare." If you have any disaster preparedness articles or links, please e-mail your information to dknight@nw4.esrd.net so it may be posted in our bi-weekly newsletter. 

September is National Preparedness Month
September is National Preparedness Month with the theme "Be Disaster Aware, Take Action to Prepare." The campaign's goal is to have all facilities, facility staff and their families become aware and prepare for a disaster.
QIRN 4 has posted a robust collection of emergency preparedness information on its website

We will focus on the following topics during the month of September in order to increase disaster awareness and preparedness.

Week 1: Reconnect with Family after a Disaster
Week 2: Plan for Specific Needs before a Disaster
Week 3: Build an Emergency Kit
Week 4 & 5: Practice for an Emergency

Visit the QIRN 4 website for more information and resources. 

Patient Representative Involvement in QAPI Meetings
As many of you are aware, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) requires patient involvement in your Quality Assurance Performance Improvement (QAPI) and Governing Body meetings. This involvement is most easily achieved by setting aside a portion of your meeting for your patient representative. However, patient involvement will look different from clinic to clinic. Consider these guidelines when involving your patient representative in your administrative meetings.


ESRD NCC Offers National HAI LAN Event
The End Stage Renal Disease Network Coordinating Center (ESRD NCC) is offering a National Healthcare Associated Infections Learning and Action Network (HAI LAN) event, Aiming for 100%: What You Should Know to Increase Your Patient's Willingness to Take the Influenza and Pneumococcal Vaccines. The webinar will be held on September 30, 2014 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. ET and is available free of charge.

This event will educate ESRD care providers and other members of the ESRD community about the current rate of vaccination within the ESRD population, the efficacy of these vaccines, and new findings related to their use. It will also assist in developing strategies to help patients who normally refuse the vaccines make good choices for their health.

The event has been developed in cooperation with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the ESRD Networks. Nurses and technicians can receive 1.0 CEs through the Northwest Renal Network (Network 16), provider # CEP 16217, which is certified through the California Board of Registered Nurses. The NCC appreciates Network 16's collaboration, which allows these CEs to be offered. Registration for this event is available online, National HAI LAN Event: Immunization. 

For more information, please contact the ESRD NCC at 516-209-5253 or email ncc@ncc.esrd.net.


NHSN Data Reporting
The National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) second quarter data will close September 30, 2014. PLEASE NOTE: Any second quarter data that is entered after September 30th will not be accepted by CMS. Only data entered into NHSN by the quarterly deadline is what is reported to CMS. Keep in mind, the website does allow for data to be edited, but any edits performed after September 30th will not be reported to CMS.

Get directions on how to generate your report to validate the facility's NHSN Dialysis Event Surveillance required reporting. 


Featured Continuing Education Opportunities
Free CEU Opportunity: IS-5.A: An Introduction to Hazardous Materials
This free Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Emergency Management Institute (EMI) Independent Study course is intended to provide a general introduction to hazardous materials that can serve as a foundation for more specific studies in the future. The course has five Units which are outlined on the course overview page of the FEMA website. No prior knowledge of the subject is required or assumed.


It's Time to Start Stopping Diabetes: Educational Series
Nephrologists Encouraged to Take "Dialysis and Pregnancy Outcomes" Survey
Several months ago, you may have received information regarding a brief survey titled "Dialysis and Pregnancy Outcomes." Its purpose is to identify some common practice patterns and to determine range of experience among American nephrologists. Participation is voluntary and answers are anonymous. The survey should take less than 10 minutes to complete.

Take the Survey

If you have already filled out the survey you do not need to redo it.


CROWNWeb Updates
ESRD NCC Information Exchange
The ESRD Network Coordinating Center (NCC) provides centralized coordination and support for the Medicare ESRD Network program. Each month, the ESRD NCC distributes an e-newsletter, known as the Information Exchange, that compiles the most important information from numerous ListServs and publications related to renal health. 

To sign up to receive this informative newsletter, please contact the ESRD NCC at ncc@ncc.esrd.net or visit the ESRD NCC Web site. You can also check the QIRN 4 website for updates that include material from the Information Exchange.


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Quality Insights Renal Network 4
 630 Freedom Business Center, Suite 116
King of Prussia, PA 19406
800-548-9205 (patients only) 
610-783-0374 (fax)
This material was prepared by Quality Insights Renal Network 4 under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The contents do not necessarily reflect CMS policy. 
Publication No. ESRD4-092114

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