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NARHC Pressures CMS to Finalize Telehealth Methodology

4/7/2020 4:00:00 PM

It gives us no great pleasure to have to write this letter but it is important that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) leadership, the President, Congress and the American people know what CMS has been doing over the last few weeks to cause enduring harm to the healthcare delivery system in rural communities around the country.

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RHC Relief Options in Recently Signed CARES Legislation
March 30, 2020 - 11:20 AM

3/30/2020 11:20:00 AM

On Friday, March 27, President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. There are several provisions in this new law that will directly affect Rural Health Clinics and your ability to remain open to see patients during the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, there are three provisions of the bill that I wanted to go through:

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CARES Act Signed Into Law
RHCs Now Able to Bill Medicare As Distant Site Providers

3/27/2020 5:00:00 PM

UPDATE: The CARES Act has officially been signed into law by President Trump. CMS is holding internal discussions on how to operationalize the telehealth provisions and may be able to release guidance soon. RHCs may now provide telehealth visits to Medicare patients with confidence that they will be paid for those visits. Billing details are still forthcoming.

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Rural Health Clinic Relevant Provisions in the CARES Act
Legislation Provides Access to Liquidity for Small Businesses

3/26/2020 5:00:00 PM

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or CARES Act passed the Senate by a vote of 96-0 on Wednesday, March 25th and is expected to be passed by the House and signed into law by President Trump on Friday, March 27th. This historic legislation is one of the largest spending bills ever passed by Congress, but lawmakers have already signaled that a fourth round of COVID-19 related legislation is necessary and work will begin on that legislation immediately...

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Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Passes Senate
Phase 3 Coronavirus Legislation Expands Telehealth to RHCs as the Distant Site

3/25/2020 12:00:00 PM

***This story is developing and we will update this article as more details become available***

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Cost Report Filing Deadlines Delayed

3/24/2020 12:00:00 PM

Will CMS delay the filing deadline of Fiscal Year End (FYE) December 31, 2019 cost reports due at the end of May due to the Covid-19 outbreak?

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Members of Congress Urge Congressional Leadership to Fix RHC Telehealth Issues

3/20/2020 5:00:00 PM

Washington D.C. ~ Representative Adrian Smith (R-NE) and Representative Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ) sent a bipartisan letter today to Congressional leadership urging them to adopt a solution for RHCs and FQHCs regarding telehealth visits during the COVID-19 pandemic. NARHC worked closely with Representative Smith and Representative O’Halleran on this effort. You can read the full letter...

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NARHC Sends Letter to Congress on Teleheath Issues

3/18/2020 12:00:00 PM

In the past few days, we have seen Congress move expeditiously to expand our nation's capacity to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic including a significant expansion of the Telehealth benefit for Medicare patients. Unfortunately, this expanded telehealth authority does not extend to the patients of rural health clinics or community health centers in underserved rural and urban areas.

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NARHC Sends Letter to Trump Administration on Telehealth Services During Covid-19 Pandemic

3/13/2020 5:00:00 PM

CMS regulations finalized in the 1970s are currently hampering the response to Covid-19 in rural areas. As you know, the CDC is encouraging patients to seek care from their home if they are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms. While fee-for-service offices are able to offer telehealth services to Medicare patients in their homes and bill for them, rural health clinics cannot. This is because rural health clinics...

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New Medicare Mandate: Appropriate Use Criteria
Affects Orders for Advanced Imaging

1/7/2020

This year, you may begin hearing from the imaging departments or imaging facilities in your area about something called the "Appropriate Use Criteria" or clinical decision support mandate. Imaging centers may begin asking for or requiring that you provide them with additional information before they can move forward with an advanced image on your Medicare patients...

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RHCs Excluded from Principal Care Management Benefit in 2020

1/6/2020

In 2020, Rural Health Clinics may not bill for Principal Care Management. Principal Care Management (PCM) is a new benefit that Medicare will cover in 2020. It is very similar to the chronic care management (CCM) benefit, except for the fact that patients can qualify for principal care management services with only one chronic condition, whereas CCM services can only be provided to patients with at least two chronic conditions.

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New RHC Policy Review, Annual Evaluation, and Emergency Preparation Final Rule 0938-AT23
Effective November 30, 2019

10/4/2019

CMS has issued final rule RIN 0938-AT23, which affects CAHs, RHCs, FQHCs, and other facility types. The following summary is taken in whole from the parts affecting RHCs §491 in the rule:

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CMS Relaxes Policy on Emergency Drugs and Biologicals for RHCs

9/16/2019 10:00:00 AM

NARHC is happy to report that CMS is significantly altering their guidance policy regarding emergency drugs and biologicals required in rural health clinics. This change is effective immediately.

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NARHC Celebrates 1,000 Members!

8/22/2019

We are happy to report that the National Association of Rural Health Clinics hit a huge milestone this summer by crossing the one-thousand members mark! To celebrate this occasion, we wanted to take a moment to thank everyone involved, reflect on the growth of NARHC, and talk briefly about the future of our association.

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The Fight to Modernize the Rural Health Clinics Program

7/19/2019

Nathan Baugh, Director of Government Affairs

As I hope you are all aware, we are working extremely hard to pass the Rural Health Clinic Modernization Act through Congress. This legislation will modernize outdated RHC rules and raise the cap or upper payment limit on Medicare reimbursement for rural health clinics.

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RHC Modernization Act Introduced in the House

5/16/2019 12:00:00 PM

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Reps. Adrian Smith (R-NE-3), Terry Sewell (D-AL-07), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA-05), and Dave Loebsack (D-IA-2) introduced the Rural Health Clinic Modernization Act, H.R. 2788. This legislation provides regulatory relief for Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) and updates Medicare reimbursements to independent RHCs. The 4,100 RHCs nationwide provide essential primary care and preventative services in rural and underserved areas, either independently or aff...

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Federal Grant Opportunity for Rural Health Clinics

4/10/2019 4:00:00 PM

Bill Finerfrock, Executive Director

The Health Resources and Services Administration's (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) will be releasing a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for a new Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) initiative called RCORP-Medication-Assisted Treatment Expansion (HRSA-19-102). HRSA plans to invest approximately $8 million in rural communities as part of this funding opportunity.

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RHC Modernization Act Introduced by Senator Barrasso and Senator Smith

4/4/2019

Nathan Baugh, Director of Government Affairs

NARHC is pleased to announce that Rural Health Clinic Modernization Act has formally been introduced. We have been working hard to get this legislation introduced for the past year and it is nice to see our efforts pay off. But the job is nowhere near done!

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What's New for RHCs in 2019?

1/10/2019

Nathan Baugh, Director of Government Affairs

Calendar year 2019 is here, and with it comes a flurry of new benefits and policies for Rural Health Clinics to keep track of. The following is a quick summary and update of what has changed and what is new for RHCs in 2019:

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President Trump Signs Legislation to Combat Opioid Crisis

10/29/2018

Nathan Baugh, Director of Government Affairs

On October 24th, President Trump signed into law the "SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act." This legislation represents the culmination of bipartisan efforts to combat the opioid crisis gripping our country. In an otherwise partisan environment, the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act passed the Senate (98 to 1) and the House (396 to 14) with overwhelming bipartisan majorities.

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