1/15 RSN Teen Prom

The Renal Support Network will sponsor their 18th Annual Renal Teen Prom in Glendale CA on January 15, 2017.  Many teenagers with kidney disease miss large amounts of school because of prolonged absences due to health.  The prom, free to kidney disease patients between the ages of 14 and 24 and a companion, brings these young people together to share their experiences, strengths, and hopes.  As one of last year’s attendees said, “Once you’ve been here at the prom, everyone is like family to you.  This is my sixth year coming to the prom.  I started when I was at a very low point in my life with medical issues and depression and this event really cheered me up.  The other 364 days of the year, I’m a girl with an illness, but on this night I’m here to have fun and I’m actually myself.”  For details, invitations, and opportunities to support the Prom, see http://www.rsnhope.org/renal-teen-prom/ .

NW 1/20 ANNA Renal Update

ANNA Greater Puget Sound Chapter 503 will host the Renal Update 2017 conference in Lynnwood WA on March 2-3, 2017.  Topics include htn, hospitalization reduction, medical marijuana, vascular access, peritonitis, poverty, living donation, pediatric PD and AKI, ethics, dialysis outcomes, Ca/PO4/PTH, and challenging personalities.  There will be no on-site or mail-in registration, so registration must be completed online by 11:30 pm PST on February 23, 2017.  There is a discount for registration completed before 11:30 pm PST January 20, 2017.  For the full agenda and registration details, see https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/nwrn.org/files/N/2017RenalUpdate.pdf .

1/17 New NKF CE Courses

The NKF Professional Education Resource Center or PERC is offering a new online continuing-education course, and a new live webinar, for renal professionals: 

NW 1/9 Network Coordination

The December issue of Network 16 News, Northwest Renal Network’s newsletter for ESRD facilities, lists the services that Networks provide as a partner, resource, and asset for facilities.  Find a copy at https://www.nwrn.org/providers-and-professional-staff/nw16n.html .

The issue includes announcement of registration for the January 9, 2017 NWRN Network Council Call at http://www.yourconferencecenter.com/r.aspx?p=1&a=UsZwfoqVWpUKNr .  Note that the code is UsZwfoqVWpUKNr, with a q (lower case Q) in the middle; some versions of the printed News had a g in the middle instead.  

“The Question Corner” question in this edition is about patients who haven’t been seen for thirty days.  “Hot Dates” include:

NW 12/31 NWRD Conference

The 2017 Northwest Renal Dietitians Annual Conference will be held in Seattle March 2-3, 2017.   Rapidly-approaching deadlines for abstract and poster submission, scholarship application, and exhibitor registration are all December 31, 2016.  For more information see http://www.nwrdonline.org/ and http://www.nwrdonline.org/conference-overview .

Patient Employment and Advisory Council

The December issue of the Northwest Renal Network’s patient newsletter, Network Consumer News, focuses on the Patient Advisory Council or PAC, and includes stories about three of the seven current PAC members and their experience with Vocational Rehabilitation.  We’ve mailed these to facilities for distribution, but you can get a copy on the Network 16 website.  As usual, we also have a Spanish edition and a large-print edition.  With this issue we’ve also included a flyer or poster encouraging committed and engaged patients and care partners to join the PAC.  Find them all at https://www.nwrn.org/patients-a-family/ptedres/ncn.html .  You can also find more information on the Network 16 PAC at https://www.nwrn.org/patients-a-family/patient-advisory-committee.html .  In southern California, find information about the Network 18 PAC and other volunteer opportunities at http://www.esrdnetwork18.org/patients/how-to-get-involved/ and http://www.esrdnetwork18.org/about/governance/ .

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CMS Pt Engagement Strategy

CMS has published a summary of their Person and Family Engagement Strategy to serve as a guide for the implementation of principles and strategies throughout CMS programs.  Its goals and objectives are:

  • Actively encourage person and family engagement along the continuum of care within the broader context of health and well-being in the communities in which people live.
  • Promote tools and strategies that reflect person and/or family values and preferences and enable them to actively engage in directing and self-managing their care.
  • Create an environment where persons and their families work in partnership with their health care providers to develop their health and wellness goals informed by sound evidence and aligned with their values and preferences.
  • Develop meaningful measures and tools aimed at improving the experience and outcomes of care for persons, caregivers, and families. Also, identify person and family engagement best practices and techniques in the field that are ready for widespread scaling and national integration.

For more information see https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Quality-Initiatives-Patient-Assessment-Instruments/QualityInitiativesGenInfo/Person-and-Family-Engagement.html and  https://blog.cms.gov/2016/12/13/cms-releases-its-person-and-family-engagement-strategy/ .

PY2017 PSCs and PSRs

CMS is advising dialysis facilities that PY2017 PSCs will be available for download starting December 15, 2016.  Facilities will be able to access their PY2017 PSCs until the start of the PY 2018 Preview Period next summer.  Please retain the PDF file containing your PSCs so that you cam generate a replacement paper copy as needed throughout 2017.  Facilities must post their PSC in a prominent patient area throughout 2017.

Final PSRs will be available for download after the first of January.  CMS will notify facilities once they have confirmed the availability date.

CMS has identified over 100 facilities who do not currently have a point of contact (POC) designated in the QIP system.  CMS urges those facilities to establish a POC as soon as possible.  It is the POC who will be authorized to access Final PSRs on the ESRD QIP system on behalf of their facility.  System users are required to change their passwords every 60 days in order to keep their accounts active.  Users whose accounts become inactive will need to contact the QualityNet Help Desk for assistance in reactivating those accounts.

If you have questions or concerns regarding use of the ESRD QIP system, please contact the QualityNet Help Desk at qnetsupport@hcqis.org or (866) 288-8912 from 5am to 5pm PST Monday through Friday.

Due to high volume of use on the ESRD QIP application, you may experience some delays in retrieving your reports.  Once you request a report, please allow two hours for the system to generate your report.  If your requested report is not retrieved within two hours, then submit a helpdesk ticket providing your CCN and the desired report name.

Finally, CMS has published a memo outlining its methodology for monitoring changes in access to dialysis.  Find it at https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Quality-Initiatives-Patient-Assessment-Instruments/ESRDQIP/09_MonitorandEval.html .  The page also includes Fact Sheets for anemia, bone and mineral disease. vascular access. and URR.