DOH/Provider Meeting - March 5, 2015

Nancy Leveille in Clinical & Quality

NYSHFA staff met with the DOH staff and other association partners for this month’s meeting. The main topics discussed are as follows:

1.    DOH Staff Changes:

  • Jackie Pappalardi has resigned from the DOH to pursue new initiatives effective March 6, 2015. She had been on vacation the last two weeks prior. Shelly Glock, Deputy Director, will be acting in the interim.
  • Mark Brownell retired last fall as the Director of the Complaint Division. Mary Jane Vogel is the new Director. She started about a month ago. She is a nurse and has experience with the Medicare Managed Care plans and their complaint division.
  • Denise Dwyer has taken over the MDS coordinator job several months ago.

2.    NYS 2014 NHQI Program:

Raina Josberger and Emily Bean presented information on the 2014 NH Quality Initiative. All data is currently being uploaded to the HCS for individual providers and in aggregate to the DOH website. Again this year, providers will be scored by 5 quintiles for an overall ranking and the most improved facilities, in the QM section, have the ability to earn added points. SNF with an IJ or substandard care will be excluded the same as last year. For full details on the program see member mailing of February 25, 2015.

NYSHFA staff will be sorting the overall data base for more in-depth analysis of overall outcomes.

CMS approval is being sought for the payment to those in the top 3 quintiles for 2014. The 2013 rates have been approved and will be out soon.

3.    E-Prescribing: NYSHFA updated the group on the status of this law. Both the senate and the Assembly have passed their bills and they have been delivered to the governor. The governor must take an action by March 13th. NYSHFA had their lobbying day on March 2 and updated the group on our discussions with the legislators by first thanking them for their quick response and support, but we also discussed the current issues still at hand for need of technology testing and need of financial support for technology.

4.    QIS Training Update: DOH has decided to conduct their own train the trainer for surveyors (they are able to do this now independent of CMS trainers) to complete the Capital District office’s ability to fully implement QIS in this region. This training will start on March 9th.  Once completed (which takes about 3 months), DOH will evaluate their training process and then plan for Central NY’s initiation into QIS. Their goal remains to bring all regions into the QIS system and are moving forward.

5.    CMS Directs Each State to Conduct MDS Surveys: NYS has inquired, but has not received CMS direction on how to conduct these surveys in 2015. The MDS surveys are independent of the standard survey and take up to 2 days to conduct. Surveyors need to be trained specifically on this process before they can implement.  Previous discussion included 5 surveys in each state,but no specific details have come forth. DOH will let us know as soon as they receive more information.

6.    EPOC Training: Electronic POC training is available again to SNF as the DOH brings on Home Care into this system. So if SNF need help with EPOC, you are welcome to join the webinars as announced over the last month.

7.    Surge Protectors in SNF: DOH noted that CMS put out an S&C letter about use of surge protectors a few months ago and to follow their instruction for use in residents’ rooms.  CMS S&C letter 14-46.

8.    Medical Examiner Letter for NYC Burial: NYSHFA and GNYHCFA noted that all health care organizations in NYC each received a letter from the city medical examiner for unclaimed bodies and the need to complete a permit for them to transport the unclaimed bodies. This could take up to a couple days for the body to be removed from a NYC SNF. DOH was just hearing this issue and the problems that can occur with this process for SNF without any means to hold a body without proper refrigeration. DOH noted they will investigate this further and assess the PHL on how long a body can be legally held in this manner.


Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Sr. Director, Member Operational Support
518-462-4800 x20