Summary: 2019 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule and Quality Payment Program Final Rule

On Nov. 1, 2018, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2019 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) and Quality Payment Program (QPP) final rule, which will be published in the Federal Register on Nov. 23, 2018. This is the first year CMS combined the Medicare PFS and QPP rules. CMS published several fact sheets on the final rule including a fact sheet on the QPP changes and a fact sheet on the PFS changes for 2019.

One week later, CMS released a snapshot of physician performance during the first year of the QPP, 2017. These data indicate that 93% of clinicians who were MIPS-eligible in 2017 will get a positive MIPS incentive payment in 2019.

AMA is continuing to review the rule and will work with its colleagues in the Federation to further analyze these policies in the coming weeks. Below is a summary of the key policies included in the final regulation and the QPP performance results.

Read the full summary here:

pdfPFS_QPP_final_rule_summary_11-8_003.pdf

Unique Specialty Code for Physicians who specialize in Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine

Physicians who specialize in Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine have been assigned a unique specialty code by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services.

That specialty code is D4.

The code goes into effect on January 1, 2019.

TBI PROGRESS REPORT A NEW PAPER ON HYPERBARIC OXYGEN THERAPY FOR TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY HAS BEEN PUBLISHED

The Department of Defense-sponsored clinical trial on hyperbaric oxygen for mild traumatic brain injury has yielded promising findings for future research.

The Emmes Corporation of Rockville, Maryland, recently announced that scientists and health professionals from Emmes; LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah; Lovelace Biomedical Environmental Research Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico; and the U.S. Army Medical and Materiel Development Activity at Fort Detrick, Maryland, have completed a multiyear clinical trial testing hyperbaric oxygen as an intervention for U.S. military service members who have suffered mild traumatic brain injuries with persistent symptoms.

Eleven researchers, as well as members of the study team, collaborated to write a paper that summarized these most recent comprehensive findings in the series of studies. ‘Hyperbaric oxygen for post-concussive symptoms in United States military service members: a randomized clinical trial’ was published in March-April 2018 issue of Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine, the bimonthly member publication of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society

The Department of Defense-sponsored study included both active-duty soldiers and veterans in the military who suffered from mild traumatic brain injuries.

Continue Reading

UHMS welcomes Derall Garrett as new UHMS Hyperbaric Facility Accreditation Director

Derall GarrettDerall Garrett has joined the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society as Hyperbaric Facility Accreditation Director. His appointment became effective Monday, December 4, when he began work with retiring accreditation director Tom Workman and HFA coordinator Beth Hands.

Mr. Garrett has been working in the field of hyperbaric medicine for more than a decade. He is a graduate of the College of Oceaneering, certified as a commercial diver and a diver medic. He is a Certified Hyperbaric Technician through the National Board of Diving Hyperbaric Technologist since 2000.

Garrett has experience working with both Class A and B hyperbaric systems in a variety of settings. He is certified by two hyperbaric chamber manufacturers to provide service and maintenance to their Class B hyperbaric systems.

Continue Reading

AUAS/DAN Diving Medicine Scholarship

NOGI LogoThe Academy of Underwater Arts & Sciences (AUAS) Announces the
AUAS/DAN Diving Medicine Scholarship


The Academy of Underwater Arts and Sciences (AUAS) is pleased to announce, with matching funds from Divers Alert Network (DAN), the creation of the AUAS/DAN Diving Medicine Research Scholarship.  This annual scholarship will encourage research on topics that expand the body of knowledge of human physiology in the marine environment. “The scholarship was created through a generous initial donation from a NOGI Fellow and with the matching funds from DAN, will support important diving medicine research into the future,” stated Dan Orr, President of the AUAS. This annual scholarship provides financial support of up to $10,000. Requests for information or an application for the AUAS/DAN Diving Medicine Scholarship can be sent to info@auas-nogi.org

Continue Reading

Sechrist Industries is our First Diamond Level Corporate Partner

diamond PNG6689

sechrist small.jpg

Sechrist was founded over 35 years ago in 1973, by Ron Sechrist, a mechanical engineer with a passion for the research and development of new life-saving medical technologies.  

Continue Reading

Clinical Practice Guidelines Committee at Work

The UHMS CPG Oversight Committee, chaired by Dr. Enoch Huang, has completed work on the first clinical practice guideline for the UHMS: ‘A clinical practice guideline for the use of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers.’ The paper is available here: https://www.uhms.org/cpg.

Continue Reading

Safety Time Out/Pause - "Stop"

UHMS Position Statement 
Safety Timeout and Pause “STOP” 

The Safety Committee of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society recommends that a Safety Time Out / Pause (STOP) be performed prior to the start of every hyperbaric treatment. A STOP should be completed regardless of multiplace or monoplace operations. A STOP will be performed in order to be compliant with safety goals, to combat complacency, and document completion of our unique safety practices. We recommend that the STOP be modeled after the timeouts performed before surgical procedures. 

Continue Reading

UHMS Credentialing and Privileging Guidelines for Hyperbaric Medicine Physicians in the U.S.A.

UHMS Credentialing and Privileging Guidelines For Hyperbaric Medicine Physicians in the U.S.A. 
Revised: 26 June 2014 
 
 
Principles Intrinsic to Ensuring Patient Access to Safe, High‐Quality Hyperbaric Oxygen (HBO2) Therapy HBO2 therapy entails medical risks and should be provided only by physicians with specialized training in hyperbaric medicine and facilities properly equipped and maintained to do so.  For physicians, experience in both routine and emergent HBO2 treatment situations is expected.  For facilities, formal accreditation through a facility accreditation program recognized by the Joint Commission, such as the UHMS accreditation program, is recommended.  A 5‐year transition period is recommended to enable all hyperbaric medicine physicians and facilities to meet these certification, privileging and accreditation guidelines.  However, during this transition period, patient access to HBO2 therapy for approved indications should not be limited. 

Continue Reading

A Letter from UHMS President, Dr. John Feldmeier in Response to The recent article by Margolis

A Letter from UHMS President, Dr. John Feldmeier in Response to The recent article by Margolis et al that reports the failure of hyperbaric oxygen in the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers. 
Click Here for full Letter

Interpretation of the study "Lack of Effectiveness of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for the Treatment of Diabetic Foot Ulcer and Prevention of Amputation"

Interpretation of the study "Lack of Effectiveness of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for the Treatment of Diabetic Foot Ulcer and Prevention of Amputation"
Submitted by UHMS Member, Dr. Phi-Nga Jeannie Le et al.
Full paper to be printed in the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine Journal.
(On behalf of the UHMS Quality, Utilization, Authorization, Reimbursement Committee)

UHMS/CDC Carbon Monoxide Surveillance Project

NOW COMPLETE

Neil B. Hampson, MD

After 3 years of operation, the joint project between the UHMS and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to conduct online surveillance of cases of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning treated with hyperbaric oxygen was completed in December 2011. Due to cutbacks in Federal funding for the CDC, financial support was not available for a fourth year. Furthermore, the pilot project had already achieved all of the goals established when it went online in August 2008, and more.

Continue Reading