Results of survey on term 'mid-level provider'
UCAOA conducted an informal survey on the use of the term mid-level provider to describe a nurse practitioner and/or physician assistant. With 151 responses received, this is the highest number of participants to date for a UCAOA mini survey. Nearly 75 percent of urgent care centers use the term mid-level provider, but how many believe this term to be offensive? To view the complete results of this survey as well as to read the 57 comments posted, click here.
Patient Perspectives: How wait times could kill the urgent care
For the past 2,000 years, human concepts of time have been linear. Meaning, you're born, go to school, get married, have children and a career, retire and eventually die. This linear thinking entailed waiting for outcomes, and as long as progress was unfolding, people have generally accepted wait as a consequence of life. Thus, urgent care operators who have communicated shorter wait times than other options — namely the ER — were valued by older generation consumers. For the new generation, however, the "future is now" and time is circular — a constant, uninterrupted 24-hour flow. There is no longer tolerance of wait but an expectation of immediacy in everything. As UCAOA Board Member Alan Ayers, MBA, MAcc, explains in this month's Expert Blog, if urgent care operators continue to operate in "linear time," which necessarily involves patient waiting, they could go the way of the dinosaurs as younger generations who have come to expect "zero wait" start migrating to other, immediate, healthcare options.
| UCAOA ACCREDITATION PROGRAM
Help us educate payers about UC: Submit your contacts today!
The vision of UCAOA is to be the catalyst for the recognition of urgent care as an essential part of the healthcare system. As part of our ongoing effort to educate key players in the field, UCAOA has been reaching out to a broad list of payers over the past year to educate them about urgent care and especially about the commitment to excellence of those centers that are UCAOA certified, and accredited. Help us to make sure YOUR payer contacts are included. To help us do this, we need your assistance! Please submit your top 5 payer contacts by using this secure online form. You can even submit them anonymously if you prefer. All information is kept strictly confidential and will be used for outreach, advocacy and education about the recognition that you've earned and also to keep them informed of the role urgent care plays in the health care continuum. If you're interested in becoming a UCAOA accredited or certified center, click here to learn more about the two programs.
2014 Fall Conference Clinical Hot Topics Track
If you're a practitioner on the frontlines of urgent care, you won't want to miss the Clinical Hot Topics Track featured at the 2014 Fall Conference (Oct. 9-11) in Denver. The most requested topics by urgent care practitioners will be covered from the hard to diagnose to the strange and peculiar. Check out all the sessions planned for this track and be sure to register to attend the conference by Sept. 11 to avoid paying higher tuition. If you're attending the conference and haven't secured your hotel accommodations, do so now because the UCAOA room block is selling out and will expire on Sept. 18.
A new urgent care Images Challenge case is now available only on the JUCM website. Review x-rays taken on a man who had fallen on an outstretched hand, consider what your diagnosis would be, then check the case resolution to see if you were right. Click here to take the Images Challenge.
The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine (JUCM) supports the evolution of urgent care medicine by creating content that addresses the clinical practice of urgent care medicine and the practice management challenges of keeping pace with an ever-changing healthcare marketplace. Are you an urgent care provider who would like to write for our journal? Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for information on our author guidelines.
A folding "sandwich board" can be an inexpensive way to enhance a center's permanent exterior signage by announcing seasonal promotions like sports physicals and flu shots, changes in hours or holiday openings, or to direct patients to a center that might not be directly visible to the street. When placing a sandwich board, it's important to anchor it to the ground to it won't be stolen or swept away by weather. Also check with your landlord and municipality regarding temporary signage restrictions — often the board can be set out only during business hours and not overnight.
Lake Charles Urgent Care adds second location on Ryan Street
Lake Charles Urgent Care
In anticipation of exponential growth in the Lake Charles area over the next several years, Lake Charles Urgent Care has expanded with a second location on Ryan Street and 15th Street to continue meeting the urgent care needs of southwest Louisiana. The newly-constructed location is a state-of-the-art facility equipped with advanced technology including digital x-ray and an electronic medical records (EMR) system. For more information about Lake Charles Urgent Care, visit their website or Facebook page.
Manahawkin Urgent Care receives UCAOA Accreditation
Manahawkin Urgent Care, located in Manahawkin, NJ is the first urgent care in New Jersey to receive the Accredited Urgent Care designation under the Urgent Care Association of America, the highest level of distinction for urgent care centers. Manahawkin Urgent Care also has the distinction of being the first Urgent Care Center in New Jersey to achieve Joint Commission Accreditation in its Ambulatory Care program. Achieving both of these designations shows Manahawkin Urgent Care's continual commitment to patient quality and safety.
CareWell Urgent Care accepting MassHealth
CareWell Urgent Care now accepts MassHealth insurance. MassHealth provides healthcare benefits to more than one million low- and moderate-income Massachusetts children, families, seniors and people with disabilities. As part of Massachusetts's pioneering healthcare reform, MassHealth pays for many important healthcare services including doctor visits, hospital stays, rehabilitation and therapy services and behavioral health services. In addition to Medicaid coverage, CareWell accepts all major insurance plans including Medicare, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Tufts Associated Health Plans, Blue Cross & Blue Shield and Cigna.
CMS to withhold one-third of provider data as Open Payments website problems mount
Modern Healthcare (Free login may be required)
The CMS has confirmed that it will withhold until next June about one-third of submitted records on drug and device industry payments to physicians and teaching hospitals because of suspected inaccuracies with data included on its Open Payments website. The decision comes as criticism of the agency's implementation of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from healthcare providers and manufacturers mounts. But the CMS says it's sticking with its plan to make the website accessible to the general public Sept. 30, and has extended the review period for doctors and teaching hospitals to Sept. 8.
| Additional Resource: Be sure to bookmark the UCAOA Health Policy Web page for updates on health policy issues and their potential impact on urgent care.
In a pressurized policy environment, healthcare leaders seek clarity
It would be hard to dispute that the health IT industry is in the thick of an exciting journey that will transform the U.S. healthcare system. As we shift from a fee-for-service-based payment system to one that rewards value-based care, plenty of initiatives are on healthcare organizations’ plates, such as meaningful use, ICD-10, value-based purchasing, bundled payments, data privacy regulations and accountable care organizations.
Health coverage to end without proof of citizenship or legal residency
The Wall Street Journal
The Obama administration moved to cut off health insurance for up to 310,000 people who signed up through the HealthCare.gov system unless they can provide documents in the next few weeks showing they are U.S. citizens or legal residents. Those individuals have until Sept. 5 to send in additional information that could confirm they are in the U.S. legally, a condition of using the online insurance exchanges to obtain coverage.
Community health centers keep exciting EHR pace
Government Health IT
Electronic health records are now a fact of life in federally-funded community health centers, with nearly all of the centers using EHRs in some or all their sites in 2013, according to the latest data from the Health Resources and Services Administration. Almost 96 percent of the 1,152 federally-funded health centers are deploying EHRs to some degree, with 87.8 percent available for all providers at all sites while another 8.1 percent had EHR systems open to some sites and providers, the HRSA said.
Valley Health Urgent Care chooses Net Health's Agility Software
Winchester, Virginia-based Valley Health is implementing Net Health's Agility Software for their occupational medicine (OM) EHR needs at urgent care locations in Virginia and West Virginia. Valley Health is replacing an existing EHR with Agility Software because it's able to drive the dual functionality required for urgent care centers that also provide occupational medicine services, a growing trend in the space.