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Happy New Year! Welcome to the January 19 edition of the Quality Insights Renal Network 4 (QIRN4) e-newsletter. In this issue, we bring you important updates for the renal community, educational opportunities, upcoming events, resources and much more. We encourage you to contact us with any questions, concerns or suggestions. 
CMSPublishesBulletinCMS Publishes bulletin on implementation of changes in the esrd pps for cy 2016
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has published a bulletin on the Implementation of Changes in the ESRD PPS for CY 2016, effective January 1, 2016. Read the full text and an MLN Matters summary

NOTE: CMS advises all dialysis facility billing staff to read this information for changes that are occurring for CY2016 claims submissions.
New2016ESRDQIPReportingMeasuresNew 2016 esrd qip reporting measures now available
Beginning January 1, 2016, facilities can begin to report on two new ESRD Quality Incentive Payment (QIP) measures: Pain Assessment and Follow-Up and Clinical Depression Screening and Follow-Up.
  • Facilities will report the Pain Assessment and Follow-Up in CROWNWeb for each qualifying patient once before August 1, 2016 and once before February 1, 2017. This pain measure is based on the National Quality Forum measure #0420 (NQF #0420) of the same name. View the detailed measure specification.
  • Facilities will report the Clinical Depression Screening and Follow-Up measure in CROWNWeb for each qualifying patient once before February 1, 2017. This depression measure is based on the National Quality Forum measure #0418 (NQF #0418) of the same name. View the detailed measure specification.

Learn more about the ESRD Quality Incentive Payment (QIP) program. Download all of the ESRD QIP PY2018 technical measure specifications. 

PY2016PSRsPSCsPY2016 psrs/pscs are now available for printing - Revised Posting Date
PY 2016 Performance Score Reports (PSR) and Certificates (PSC) were released on December 30, 2015. Facilities are required to post their PSCs in a prominent patient area on or before 11:59 (EST) on February 1, 2016. Your PSR is a backup report that you don't need to post, but which will help educate your staff so they can answer any questions that patients may have about your posted PSC. To find step-by-step instructions for logging onto the QualityNet website and downloading your PSR and PSC, review the PY 2016 Preview Period National Provider Call slides. An audio recording and written transcript of the call are also available under December 9, 2015. 
NHSNReleaseNotesNHSN Release Notes are now available
The NHSN v8.5 (January 2016) release notes are now available. There are many changes in this new version. Please review the entire document  for detailed information regarding the changes. Highlights are listed below for your convenience.

Changes to All Components:
  • Enrollment and Facility Information Screens: Add primary contact as a user; requires that the facility administrator add the primary contacts.
  • Landing Page - Facility Search: Users can now enter search criteria to find a facility.
Changes to the Healthcare Personnel Safety Component: 
  • Analysis - Monthly Report Plan Line List: HPS component users will be able to generate a line list of reporting plan data.
  • Analysis - Line Listing - Facility Enrollment Data: This is a new report that lists facility enrollment information.
  • Analysis - Line Listing - HCP Flu Vaccination for QIP: This is a new report that lists the facilities that have satisfied minimum reporting requirements for this HCP flu vaccination reporting.
Changes to the Dialysis Component: 
  • Annual Outpatient Dialysis Center Practices Survey: This survey has been updated with new questions and clarifications to existing questions.
  • Dialysis Event Surveillance
    • Dialysis Event Form: There are numerous changes; please refer to full document.
    • The Denominators for Dialysis Event Surveillance Form: Added a numeric field for number of patients for whom dialyzers are reused.
  • Prevention Process Measures Form: There are numerous changes; please refer to full document.
Changes Impacting Facilities reporting Via Clinical Document Architecture (CDA)
  • Summary Reports Imported via CDA: There are numerous changes; please refer to full document.

NHSNDataCollectionUpdateNHSN update available for data collection forms
Data collection forms for National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) 2016 events are anticipated to be posted to the NHSN website the week of January 11.  New website posting requirements have delayed these postings, but NHSN is working as quickly as possible to remedy these.

NHSNOutpatientSurveyNHSN Outpatient dialysis center practices survey
The NHSN Outpatient Dialysis Center Practices Survey (required for Dialysis Event reporting) has been released. Many questions in the 2016 survey pertain to the first week of February;
therefore, NHSN users are encouraged to begin the survey on or after February 1. The survey cannot be submitted to NHSN until after the first week of February. It is strongly recommended that the survey is completed by someone who works in the center and is familiar with current practices within the center. Complete the survey based on the actual practices at the center, not necessarily the center policy, if there are differences. Thank you for your attention to this matter. Please contact the NHSN helpdesk for questions and enter "Dialysis" in the subject line.
UpcomingEventsUpcoming events
Registration Now Open for Dialysis Care Quality Improvement Conference in January
The Dialysis Care Quality Improvement Conference will take place this January 25 - 27 in Orlando where senior industry experts from renal care providers will discuss the most pressing challenges and solutions for meeting performance standards in the ESRD QIP. Learn more and register today.
PreparingWinterWeatherget prepared for winter weather
When a winter storm or the possibility of one is approaching your geographical area: 

Patients: Make sure you stay in communication with your facility for updates and stay current with local news updates via radio, television, the internet or social media.

Facility Staff: Encourage your patients to stay in communication with the facility for updates and stay current with local news updates via radio, television, the internet or social media. Report all alternative treatment schedules or facility closures due to inclement weather to the Network. 

Learn the Signs of Hypothermia
Winter is just around the corner, and it's time to think about cold weather safety; specifically hypothermia. Hypothermia is a dangerous drop in body temperature, usually caused by prolonged exposure to cold temperatures.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hypothermia is particularly dangerous because a person may not know it's happening. Some signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, and slurred speech.

The CDC offers tips for helping someone who may be experiencing hypothermia, including:
  • Get the victim into a warm room or shelter;
  • If the victim has on any wet clothing, remove it;
  • Warm the center of the body first using an electric blanket, if available; and Get medical attention as soon as possible
NHSNFAQsNHSN FAQs on healthcare personnel influenza vaccination summary reporting now available
Check out this edition of News from the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) Help Desk, which features frequently asked questions related to Healthcare Personnel Influenza Vaccination Summary Reporting.  

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MLNConnectsCallMLN Connects National Provider Call Presentation is Now Available
The MLN Connects National Provider Call presentation on ESRD Quality Incentive Program: Accessing Your Facility's PY 2016 Reporting Documents is now available. Access the presentation
EducationOppseducation opportunities
NKF Offers Professional Education Resource Center (PERC)
The NKF's Professional Education Resource Center (PERC) is designed for professionals committed to continuing their education and improving patient outcomes. Within it you will find activities on an array of carefully selected topics given by renowned faculty.

Features of PERC
  • Personalized profile/login
  • FREE for NKF members
  • View your completed activities in one place
  • More discipline-specific courses than ever before
  • Earn CME/CEs anytime, anywhere
Medscape Education Offers Comprehensive Management of CKD-MBD: Hands-On Case Studies
Medscape Education now has a CME/CE opportunity on the topic of Comprehensive Management of CKD-MBD: Hands-On Case Studies. The goal of this activity is to improve the management and treatment of patients with CKD-MBD and to assist healthcare providers in tailoring treatment for individual patients.

NRAA Offers Webinar Wednesday - Bringing QAPI to Life: From Tool to Tangible Results
The National Renal Administrators Association (NRAA) is proud to be able to deliver a dynamic webinar on the Quality Assurance Performance Improvement (QAPI) program on Wednesday, January 27 at 1:00 p.m. Expert speakers will present the helpful tool and how it can be, and has been, adapted to various dialysis settings. More broadly, questions such as how a facility can develop a meaningful and compliant program, sustain and improve it and engage team members in the process will be answered. Examples of lessons learned and success will also be presented to leave webinar participants inspired to make their QAPI program results tangible. Learn more and register.

AHRQ Offers Continuing Education and Continuing Medical Education Opportunities
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) offers continuing education (CE) and continuing medical education (CME) videos and articles on a range of health care topics including patient safety and patient-centered outcomes research findings. The CE/CME activities summarize reviews of evidence on the effectiveness and safety of treatments and strategies for improving patient care. Some of the available topics include:
  • Menopausal Symptoms: Comparative Effectiveness of Therapies
  • Pharmacotherapy for Adults with Alcohol-Use Disorders in Outpatient Setting
  • Treatment Strategies for Patients with Peripheral Artery Disease
  • Child Obesity Prevention Programs: Comparative Effectiveness
  • Treating Insomnia in Adults

These resources provide health care providers with skills and information to support individual decision making and patient management. The activities are available at no cost for CE/CME credit. Learn more.  

ESRDResourcesESRD resources  
ESRD NCC Announces New Patient Tools
New patient education tools are now available for download on the ESRD National Coordinating Center (NCC) website. Tools include information about kidney transplantation, treatment choices, infection prevention, and getting involved in your care. These tools were developed with the participation of the National Patient and Family Engagement Learning and Action Network (NPFE LAN) and include the patient's perspective as well as clinical expertise. 

New kidney transplant tools include Get the Facts and Your Guide to the Transplant Process. Treatment choices are explained in the new tools What Are My Treatment Choices? and Consider Your Dialysis Choices. Two more tools help patients understand infection prevention: Know the Facts About Infection and How Do You Get an Infection? Other tools are available under "Getting Involved in Your Care." All of these tools can be found by visiting the ESRD NCC website

These new tools join several toolkits under development in the centralized patient resource library of educational materials. NPFE LAN member, Maile, shares her story and point of view on creating these tools. 
Patient Education Resources Now Available: Recovering Emotionally from Disaster
Disasters are stressful and emotionally upsetting for everyone affected, especially children, the elderly, and those with chronic illnesses or access issues. Check out these mental health resources for recovering emotionally from disasters. 
  • Recovering Emotionally from Disaster (English)
  • Recovering Emotionally from Disaster (Spanish)
Patient Education Resources Now Available: Shelter in Place
"Shelter in Place" means to take immediate shelter where you are, whether it be at home, work, school, or in between. Choosing to take shelter is also necessary in many emergencies. Check out these resources on how to "Shelter in Place."
ESRD NCC Offers Catheter Freedom Tools
The ESRD National Coordinating Center (NCC) has announced new Fistula-First-Catheter-Last tools for access planning and monitoring. The Vascular Access Planning Guide for Renal Professionals is a comprehensive guide with all the steps in planning for and placing an arteriovenous (AV) fistula or an AV graft. It is a companion resource to Lifeline for a Lifetime: Planning for Your Vascular Access, the access planning guide for use in educating patients. The "Ready Set Go" tools were designed to aid renal professionals in understanding the stages of fistula maturation and graft healing, and to help you educate patients, including companion patient resources. Learn more
Check out the 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 or visit the ESRD NCC website

Learn Tips for Preventing Dialysis Infections
Adapted from a tool developed by the Northwest Renal Network, check out this flyer on tips for preventing dialysis infections. 

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This bi-weekly e-newsletter will serve as our primary method of communicating important news and updates. We encourage you to visit our Web site for the most up-to-date information or to contact us with questions, comments or suggestions.

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. ESRD4-122115