ACHC Offers Accelerated Sleep Lab Accreditation

Big news in the sleep world has many providers wide awake. Recent changes to Medicare coverage policies for sleep studies will require sleep-specific accreditation for providers in 13 states. And it’s happening soon.

Effective June 5, 2017, sleep lab facilities in Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming and certain U.S. territories will have to have sleep-specific accreditation to be eligible for coverage.

To assist facilities in meeting this deadline, ACHC is offering accelerated sleep lab accreditation.

To start the process, you will need to submit an application (available in your Customer Central account) and a $1,500 nonrefundable deposit. Your contract will then be emailed to you by your Account Advisor. Next, you will need to complete an Accelerated Sleep Accreditation Preliminary Evidence Report (PER) Checklist in which you acknowledge that the requirements of the PER Checklist have been met and the required items have been submitted for clinical review.

In order for ACHC to issue a subsequent approval letter and certificate, all submitted PER items must go through a successful clinical desk review and we must have the following items:

  • Signed contract
  • Payment in full

The approval letter will grant you accreditation for one year. ACHC will then work with you to schedule an on-site survey as quickly as possible. Once ACHC has completed the site visit, you will receive an updated accreditation certificate that will expire three years from the original accreditation date.
Please call us at (855) 937-2242 or email customerservice@achc.org to learn more.

 

HHS Cybersecurity Update

News of the recent worldwide cyberattack on the health sector in the UK has generated interest and inquiry in the US. The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has taken the lead on collecting and disseminating useful information to healthcare constituencies since the discovery of this malicious attack on Friday. Although this iteration of the threat appears to be contained, ACHC encourages all healthcare providers to be vigilant in protecting against and reporting any cyber threats. Below is the update released by HHS.

 

We would like to flag for the community that a partner noted an exploitative social engineering activity whereby an individual called a hospital claiming to be from Microsoft and offering support if given access to their servers. It is likely that malicious actors will try and take advantage of the current situation in similar ways. Additionally, we received anecdotal notices of medical device ransomware infection.

How to request an unauthenticated scan of your public IP addresses from DHS

The US-CERT’s National Cybersecurity Assessment & Technical Services (NCATS) provides integrated threat intelligence and an objective third-party perspective on the current cybersecurity posture of the stakeholder’s unclassified operational/business networks. NCATS security services are available at no cost to stakeholders. For more information, please contact NCATS_INFO@hq.dhs.gov.

If you are the victim of ransomware or have cyber threat indicators to share, please contact law enforcement immediately.

  1. Contact your FBI Field Office Cyber Task Force immediately to report a ransomware event and request assistance. These professionals work with state and local law enforcement and other federal and international partners to pursue cybercriminals globally and to assist victims of cybercrime.
  2. Report cyber incidents to the US-CERT and the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center.
  3. For further analysis please also share these indicators with HHS’ Healthcare Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (HCCIC) at HCCIC_RM@hhs.gov.

For the most up-to-date information from the U.S government on cybersecurity issues, visit:

Other Resources:

ALERT: HHS advises providers take note of cyber security risks

May 12, 2017. The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is monitoring a significant cyber attack that has focused primarily on health systems in Europe. At this point the agency is assessing impact to US health systems and providers as some information suggests this attack may have spread to other industries and regions. Until more is known ACHC advises all to remind their associates and staff of safe and robust cyber security practices. The agency has provided some resources to assist in recognizing threats as well as how to handle suspicious activity. Monitor ACHC’s Twitter page (https://twitter.com/achc) for current information affecting health care providers. Below is the advisory sent by HHS.

Dear HPH Sector Colleagues,
HHS is aware of a significant cyber security issue in the UK and other international locations affecting hospitals and healthcare information systems. We are also aware that there is evidence of this attack occurring inside the United States. We are working with our partners across government and in the private sector to develop a better understanding of the threat and to provide additional information on measures to protect your systems. We advise that you continue to exercise cyber security best practices – particularly with respect to email.
Laura Wolf,
Critical Infrastructure Protection Lead
HHS-ASPR-OEM
 
Additional information on ransomware provided by HHS Office for Civil Rights can be found at:
Cyber Newsletters: 
https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/hippa-cyber-awareness-monthly-issue1.pdf
https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/hipaa-cyber-awareness-monthly-issue3.pdf
https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/february-2017-ocr-cyber-awareness-newsletter.pdf
 
Ransomware Guidance:
https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/RansomwareFactSheet.pdf

A Conversation with Bryan Prince about USP 800

Bryan Prince knows that USP can be a bitter pill for the independent pharmacist to swallow. The owner of Lab·Red Pharmacy Consultants who is an expert in cleanroom design, chemical handling and workflow understands the challenges pharmacy owners face as they try to balance a commitment to worker safety with the realities of running a business.

Prince also lent his expertise to the recently released Hazardous Drug Consensus Statement, a joint effort of the Pharmacy Compounding Accreditation Board (PCAB) and industry leaders on the handling of hazardous drugs per USP guidelines.

Set to become official – i.e., enforceable by a regulatory entity such as a state board of pharmacy – on July 1, 2018, USP describes practice and quality standards for handling hazardous drugs (as identified by National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, or NIOSH) in healthcare settings.

“The reality is it’s a huge financial investment,” Prince said about USP , noting that many pharmacists are wondering where they will find the space and/or the money to redesign or expand their cleanrooms/storage areas to meet requirements.

“We’ve got four different aspects of compounding,” Prince explained, “which equals four different rooms: USP , non-sterile, nonhazardous; USP sterile nonhazardous. Now we’re going to add on USP , non-sterile hazardous, and USP , sterile hazardous.

Think of it from the independent pharmacy owner’s perspective, he said: “You’re telling me I’ve got to have four separate rooms? Where am I going to find that space?”

From a broader perspective, though, can’t one assume that pharmacists already understand the risks and thus are doing the right things when it comes to HD handling?

“I’ve heard this: ‘Bryan, I’ve been doing this (HD compounding) for 20 years, and I’m OK.’ Then I’ve heard the flip side: The gentleman who said ‘After 20 years of doing this, I had some tumors removed.’ He couldn’t pinpoint it, but he felt like it was exposure to chemicals.

“At a conference, I met a young woman who said, ‘I’ve had three miscarriages. Do you think that’s because I work in a compounding pharmacy and I handle chemicals?’ And I told her ‘I can’t make that determination for you.’

“But the reality is, I think this is the next ‘mesothelioma’ waiting to happen,” Prince said, adding that he wonders why there aren’t yet legal ads on TV to the tune of: ‘If you’ve been working in a compounding pharmacy for X number of years and suffer from Y or Z …”

While Prince believes that USP is long overdue, he believes the need for it is stronger than ever. “Where we are today is different from where we were five years ago. There are more and more stories of exposure. The whole meningitis outbreak (scores of deaths traced to contaminated steroid injections from New England Compounding Center) kicked this thing off full throttle. The government took it and went to the next level with it.

“Did the independent pharmacy industry need some sort of regulatory change as it relates to chemical handling? Absolutely. I’m always going to be on the side of the fence that says this has been a long time coming,” which may be in opposition to the pharmacy owner, he acknowledged.

“But we have to get to a place where we understand that chemicals are dangerous.”

Bryan Prince will be presenting during a workshop sponsored by ACHC’s Accreditation University on July 25-26 at Fairleigh Dickinson University School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Teaneck, NJ. This PCAB Sterile and Non-Sterile Compounding and USP Compliance Workshop will provide pharmacy personnel with a comprehensive overview of the accreditation process and a standard-by-standard review of the requirements for each, along with a detailed examination of USP and guidelines. For more information and to register, visit accreditationuniversity.com or contact Chelsie Rigsbee at 919-785-1214 or crigsbee@achc.org.

Need Receipts From Customer Central?

Obtaining your payment receipts on Customer Central is easier than ever. Log in to Customer Central and click, “MY ACCOUNT   »   Payment History.”
Select Payment History

 

Select the desired receipt to see more information.
Payment-History

 

Finally, save a copy for your records by clicking, “Download PDF.”
Payment-Receipt

It’s that simple! Please remember transactions completed offline will not be accessible on Customer Central. Contact ACHC’s Accounting Department for offline payment receipts.

Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Need to Make Updates to Your Accreditation?

At ACHC it’s our goal to be a partner throughout the entire process – before, during, and after accreditation. ACHC knows that once in your 3-year accreditation cycle, business operations adjust for market demands. Your company could move locations, add branch offices, adjust the services provided, or even purchase another entity. If anything changes with your business operations in your accreditation cycle, it is important to notify ACHC.

Updating your information while in your 3-year accreditation cycle is even easier now with Customer Central. You can begin the notification process online. Log into your Customer Central account and navigate to the ”MY ACCOUNT + » Edit Company Info” page.

01. Edit Company Info

Click on the “[Expand]” button to view the section that you wish to explore. For this example, we’ll look at “CHANGE OF OWNERSHIP”.

02. Select Change of Ownership

 

Select the correct change of ownership form to download the PDF. The form should be completed in Adobe Reader. Don’t have Adobe Reader? Get it here »

03. FIll out PDF

 

Complete all of the corresponding questions, save the file, and email it to your Account Advisor with any required documentation (specified in the PDF). If you have any questions while in the process, always feel free to reach out to your company’s Account Advisor.

Customer Central allows you to complete the entire process online – from account creation to accreditation! With direct access to your accreditation team and valuable new resources, achieving and maintaining accreditation has never been easier.

Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Pharmacy | Sleep  | Behavioral Health

ACHC | Brand Guidelines 2015

The ACHC brand is more than just a logo; it is a broad representation of our essence, used to signify the exceptional quality of our healthcare provider clients. Achieving ACHC Accreditation is a notable accomplishment that your company should be proud to display. The ACHC and PCAB  Accreditation “seals” show your organization’s adherence to a rigorous set of standards, and demonstrates your commitment to providing the highest quality health care to those you serve.

Visit Customer Central at cc.achc.org or contact the ACHC Marketing Department for digital files of the logos. The kit downloaded with this document contains all of the logo variations, a sample press release, and suggested website text.

For more information, contact the ACHC Marketing Department at (855) 937-2242. Thank you for your support.


Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Behavioral Health Home Care

Behavioral Health Home Care integrates behavioral health interventions into home care services for patients whose mental illness, substance abuse, intellectual/developmental disabilities make it difficult, or otherwise prevent them from receiving care outside of their homes. Services are provided by a psychiatric nurse and other home care personnel, as ordered by a physician.

Watch the above video to learn more about ACHC’s Behavioral Health Home Care service.

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Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Advisor Tips: On-Site Survey

In this Advisor Tips video with Danny Hupp, one of ACHC’s DMEPOS and Pharmacy Accreditation Advisors, he discusses three tips to help you prepare for your survey.

  1. Complete your Preliminary Evidence Report (PER) Checklist
    • The PER Checklist will be submitted on Customer Central
  2. Organize your patient and personnel files
    • ACHC’s Surveyors will review a random selection of files for compliance
  3. Conduct a mock survey with your staff members
    • This will help your team get in the survey-ready mindset

Learn more by watching the video above.

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Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Danny

CMS Moratoria Extension

18 Feb 2014_CMS extension

In response to recent high profile instances of fraud, waste, and abuse, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released Survey and Certification letter 14-10-HHA on February 4, 2014, extending the moratoria on home health agency enrollment. These moratoria are phase two of the original release in July, 2013 that curtailed the enrollment of any new home health agency in Chicago, IL (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties) and Miami, FL (Miami-Dade and Monroe counties). CMS reports that these areas were chosen due to high risk for fraud, high utilization, and a disproportionately large number of new providers.

In this new phase, CMS has extended the moratoria in the above areas, and has also added four additional targeted areas – Fort Lauderdale, FL (Broward county), Detroit, MI (Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties), Dallas, TX (Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Kaufman, Rockwell, and Tarrant counties) and Houston, TX (Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, and Waller counties).

The moratoria will affect any home health agency located in the above areas that has applied for, or is in the process of obtaining a Medicare provider number, but has not been approved by the Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) as of January 30, 2014.  In order for a home health agency’s application to be considered complete, CMS requires that the following steps must be fully completed:

  1. The agency’s initial Medicare certification survey must have been completed
  2. The second MAC review has been completed
  3. CMS regional office sent the tie-in notice to the MAC
  4. The MAC performed a site visit
  5. The MAC switched the agency’s Provider Enrollment Chain Organization System (PECOS) record to approved

If all of these steps were not completed prior to the implementation date of the moratoria, the agency’s application will be denied. If an organization’s status is denied, they will be notified by the MAC. Once the moratorium is lifted, the agency will need to complete a new enrollment application if it continues to seek a Medicare provider number. In addition, the MAC will deny any application for a branch addition location in the above areas as well. Agencies affected will have the right to appeal by following information found in the denial letter issued by the MAC.

Unfortunately, home health surveys conducted by an accrediting organization in these targeted areas for initial deeming purposes will not be accepted by CMS and will not be accepted as a valid survey during the moratoria. ACHC can continue to process prospective home health agency’s application for accreditation only. For more information, contact your Accreditation Advisor at (855) 937-2242.

Download the survey and certification letters, and the FAQs issued by CMS ››

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Ready for accreditation? Contact ACHC at (855) 937-2242 to learn more.

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Pharmacy | Sleep  | Behavioral Health