Issue: March 19, 2018

Published on March 19, 2018

Articles in this issue:

New Medicare Card Project Special Open Door Forum Announced

Author: * Published in NYSCAL Notes

Please be aware of the following announcement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding their national New Medicare Card initiative.

On Tuesday, March 20, 2018 from 2 pm to 3 PM ET, CMS will host a Special Open Door Forum to give providers an opportunity to ask questions about the New Medicare Card Project.

See attached for full details.

March 15th Town Hall Call Summary

Author: Lisa Volk* Published in Clinical & Quality

As a follow-up to our Town Hall Meeting here are two areas to take a closer look at as you prepare for the new survey process. At the end of the mailing you will see the link to down load the critical element pathways. Use these pathways to help prepare you for the new survey process.

FDA Guidance Related to Entrapment

We first brought this issue to the membership’s attention in a Member Mailing-Provider Alert posted on April 6, 2015. All providers should be using the 2006 FDA guidance located at  as a part of their ongoing bed safety program to help identify entrapment risks that may exist in any of the 7 zones addressed by the guidance. We strongly encourage all providers to download a copy of this guidance and review it with appropriate staff to ensure proper ongoing monitoring of this serious issue.

Resident’s Receiving Dialysis

Just as a reminder for providers when preparing for the new survey process for a resident receiving dialysis at a certified dialysis facility must ensure the following:

Assess and document vital signs, including the blood pressure in the arm where the access site is not located, weights if ordered and communicate the information including the resident’s status with the dialysis facility prior to and post dialysis

Provide assistance and safe transportation to and from dialysis

Administer meds or meals before or after dialysis as ordered;

Provide direct visual monitoring of the access site before and after dialysis

Provide ongoing monitoring and care of the resident’s vascular access (fistula, graft, or central venous catheter) for HD, catheter for PD as ordered, and provide ongoing monitoring for dialysis related complications (e.g., bleeding, access site infection, or hypotension).

Monitor the communication log from dialysis center for any adverse outcomes at dialysis that must be follow-up or medication adjustments etc.… 

Here are the links to the full critical pathways: 

If you were unable to attend the call, here is the link to the recording. The recording will only be available until April 13th.


Lisa Volk, RN, B.P.S., LNHA
Director, Clinical & Quality Services
518-462-4800 x15

Informational message: Influenza Surveillance Report for the week ending March 10, 2018

Author: Lisa Volk* Published in Clinical & Quality

This Informational Message is being sent to you by the NYSDOH Bureau of Communicable Disease Control (BCDC), which produces a weekly statewide influenza surveillance report from October through May. Attached is the influenza surveillance report for the week ending March 10, 2018.

This surveillance report is also available on the NYSDOH's public website at: as well as on the NYSDOH's password-protected Health Commerce System (HCS). To access the report on the HCS, log onto the HCS using your HCS password, select "Content" from the menu bar, then "Documents by Group">"NYSDOH">Diseases and Conditions">"Influenza"> "Surveillance">"Weekly Reports 2017-18 Season."


Lisa Volk, RN, B.P.S., LNHA
Director, Clinical & Quality Services
518-462-4800 x15

2018 Quality Improvement Series

Author: Amanda Vandenburgh

The goal of this educational program is to provide a comprehensive array of resources, skills training and educational support for health care professionals working in Skilled Nursing Facilities. Each of the sessions is grounded in evidence and values-based quality improvement methods and designed to provide practical tools and knowledge that can immediately be applied in Skilled Nursing Facilities.

FQC Contact:
Amanda Vandenburgh
(518) 462-4800 ext. 21

For Brochure and Application: Click Here

AHCA to Present RCS-1 Webinar

Author: * Published in Finance & Reimbursement

AHCA will conduct a free webinar on Thursday, March 29, 2018 from 3:00 – 4:30 pm on the Resident Classification System, Version 1 (RCS-1). The RCS-1 is being explored by CMS to potentially replace the existing RUGS IV payment system for Medicare. 

Below is the AHCA announcement and registration link.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is exploring a Medicare skilled nursing facility payment system which would replace the existing Resource Utilization Group Version IV (RUGs IV) with a new concept called the Resident Classification System, Version 1 (RCS-1). While CMS has not yet formally proposed the payment system, AHCA believes members should begin to educate themselves about the core elements of RCS-1. 

The proposed patient characteristics-based system is a fundamental departure from the current RUGS IV. Learn about the overarching RCS-1 goals and features. Each new component will be reviewed and discussed, as well as likely alternations in SNF operations.

On March 29, 3:00-4:30PM eastern, AHCA's Mike Cheek, Senior Vice President of Reimbursement Policy, will lead a free webinar designed to help you better understand RCS-1 and possible implementation timelines.

Learning Objectives: 

  1. Understand CMS' goals and overarching RCS-1 construct 
  2. Learn about each component and associated patient characteristics
  3. Learn about member expert preliminary analyses and steps to assess RCS-1 impacts
  4. Review the possible implementation and transition from RUGS IV to RCS-1 

The 90-minute webinar will include a Question and Answer session and will be recorded. We hope you can join us and look forward to the discussion. 

Online registration deadline:  March 27, 2018

Registration Link:

Best Regards,

Michael W. Cheek
Senior Vice President
Reimbursement Policy


Carl J. Pucci
Chief Financial Officer
518-462-4800 x36

Free Webinar - CEUs Offered


Managed Care Legal Update - Winter 2018 Wednesday - March 21, 2018 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

The attendees will learn about changes in Managed Long-Term Care Appeals and Grievances. Updates will be discussed regarding  the State Budget proposals currently carving nursing home care out of MLTC after six (6) months and transitioning to fee for service. Attendees will be updated on Value Based Payment issues and contracting. Discussion of Managed Care Contracting Challenges including collection of NAMI, all products clauses (excluding products such as the exchange products), termination issues, post-termination continued services, Benchmark and rate issues, pharmacy reimbursement issues.

To Register Go To:ttps://