Related Stories

Submit 2020 Data Now to Avoid Medicare Pay Cut - 02/12/2021

If you participated in Medicare’s Quality Payment Program (QPP) under the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), the deadline to submit all data through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) portal has been extended one day to April 1. The deadline had been March 31.


Opening Act: Patients Given Broad Access to Their EHRs - 01/06/2021

Starting April 5, physicians must be ready to electronically share with patients more of the information generated during office visits. This change comes thanks to “information blocking” rules that are part of the 21st Century Cures Act, passed by Congress in 2016 and put into regulation in 2020 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the National Coordinator (ONC).


Patient Privacy’s New Frontier: AMA Aims to Keep Apps Honest With Personal Health Data - 12/01/2020

In the evolving world of health information technology, some vendors that store and transmit health information – such as the tech minds behind certain mobile apps – are getting their hands on patient data without any HIPAA leash to rein in their use of it. Now, organized medicine is doing its part to preserve patients’ privacy when their health information finds its way outside of HIPAA-covered organizations.


Reminder: Some Cures Act Reporting Provisions Required This Year - 11/24/2020

Although physicians have been given more time to comply with certain federal data-sharing provisions under the 21st Century Cures Act, other compliance regulations have not been delayed.


Feds Delay Enforcement of Data-Sharing Rules - 11/18/2020

Physicians will have more time to comply with federal rules aimed at improving data-sharing after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced yesterday it will delayenforcement of certain provisions from Nov. 2 to April 5, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


CMS Increases Advanced APM Thresholds for 2021 - 11/13/2020

If you participated in Medicare’s Quality Payment Program (QPP) this year as a Qualifying Alternative Payment Model Participant (QP), you’ll need to keep an eye on your status for 2021.


See Blue Cross Referral Chart, Colonoscopy Coding Tips - 10/14/2020

As a result of “feedback from the provider community,” Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas has removed 111 procedure codes from its preauthorization requirements related to additional care categories of codes.


Upgraded Free Tool Helps With HIPAA Compliance - 10/12/2020

If you participate in the Medicare Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), you must complete your security risk assessment by Dec. 31. An upgraded tool from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services might make the assessment easier.


TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof - 09/26/2020

TMA Member Benefits: Future Proof In the past year, cyberattacks on healthcare facilities have increased by 35%. The cost of a breach can average of $402 per compromised record, plus fines. TMA makes robust security for your practice easy through education and services designed to manage the worst technology risks.


Medicaid Grant Could Pay for Your HIE Connection - 08/12/2020

Have you or your practice been considering connecting your electronic health record (EHR) to a health information exchange (HIE), but keep getting hung up by the cost? Well, here’s some good news. Three public HIEs recently were awarded contracts for a Medicaid grant that could pay for you to connect to their exchanges.


Texas Vaccine Registry to be Accessible Through EHRs - 06/26/2020

Texas physicians soon will have an easier time accessing and submitting vaccination records when using the Texas Immunization Registry (ImmTrac2), according to the Texas Department of State Health Services, which runs the registry.


How Can You Exchange Patient Data? - 06/09/2020

Health Information Exchange can be accomplished in different ways, and the needs and requirements vary by practice. While there are numerous ways to accomplish HIE, there are four types of HIE that are currently in use.


EHR Data Entry – There’s a Better Way - 06/04/2020

Electronic Health Record (EHR) data entry is a part of the job, but for most physicians it’s a chore. Not only does it take time away from your patients, it adds to the hours you spend in the office (or to the work hours you spend at home). Fortunately, many physicians have found ways to save time doing data entry.


Text Orders Securely and Within Guidelines - 05/13/2020

The Joint Commission now says it’s OK to text orders, with certain requirements. If you do send orders via text messaging, be sure to establish guidelines in writing in your practice’s policies and procedures manual.


Is Your Patients’ HIPAA-Protected Information Secure? - 05/13/2020

A guide from TMA-endorsed DocbookMD helps smaller practices understand the risks of using mobile devices and how to stay HIPAA-secure.


Never, Ever Text Patient Hospital Orders - 05/12/2020

No matter how comfortable you are with texting, remember, texting patients’ hospital orders is not an acceptable practice.


CMS Postpones 2019 MIPS Reporting Deadline to April 30 - 03/23/2020

With a key deadline for clinicians in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System approaching fast amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is giving those clinicians a month of extra time to submit their data.


Watch Out For COVID-19 Cyber Scams - 03/20/2020

Internet scammers are trying to cash in on the widespread anxiety over COVID-19, and awareness is the best defense, according to the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. Likewise, the Texas Attorney General's Office has issued a warning about outbreak-related scams.


Medicaid Seeks Physicians for EHR Audit Appeals Panel - 03/04/2020

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is accepting applications for its Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Program Audit Ad Hoc Review Panel.


The Legacy of ARIES: Outdated Technology Interferes with HIV/AIDS Treatment - 02/28/2020

Texas developed the AIDS Regional Information and Evaluation System in the early 1990s to administer federal grants from the then-new Ryan White program, which provides HIV- and AIDS-related health services for patients who can’t get health care coverage or financial resources any other way. Physicians say the reservoir of medical data can be valuable, and without it, they can’t get the funds they need to treat these patients. But the outdated reporting system – which still operates on 1990s technology – causes serious headaches and detracts from patient care.  


Feds Offer Strategies For Tackling EHR Burden - 02/27/2020

The federal government is hoping to give physicians a hand in managing the burdens of one of their foremost time-eaters: Electronic health records (EHRs). The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) this week released a report titled Strategy on Reducing Regulatory and Administrative Burden Relating to the Use of Health IT and EHRs.


TPHC Praises Bill to Make State College Campuses and Offices Tobacco-Free - 02/20/2020

Statement by Eduardo Sanchez, MD, chair of the Texas Public Health Coalition and former Texas commissioner of health, in support of legislation filed to make Texas state college campuses and state agencies tobacco-free.


Reporting System Makes Documenting PMP Checks Easy - 02/19/2020

As you probably already know, beginning March 1, you’ll be required to check the Texas Prescription Monitoring Program, known as PMP Aware, any time you prescribe certain medications. To help you document those checks, PMP Aware allows you to download PDFs that you can add to a patient’s medical record.


Beware of Phony TMB or DEA Agents - 02/05/2020

The Texas Medical Board (TMB) is warning physicians and pharmacies of a scam involving criminals who sometimes pose as TMB officials. TMB passed along a report from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) that says physicians registered with the DEA are receiving calls and emails from criminals who identify themselves as DEA personnel or other law enforcement agents.


Taking Privacy to a New Level: Texas Lowers Reporting Threshold for Security Breaches - 01/27/2020

Federal requirements have not changed, but starting Jan. 1, breach notification requirements will become even more stringent for Texas physicians or medical entities. The Texas Legislature dropped the threshold for breach reporting from 500 patients to 250. House Bill 4390 also requires medical entities to report breaches to the Texas attorney general’s office within 60 days of the breach.