DPH Mandates-Electronic Submission of Plans of Correction

The MA Department of Public Health, Division of Health Care Quality, recently announced in Circular Letter 12-12-577 effective January 1, 2013, certified facilities, agencies and providers will be required to submit Plans of Correction (POC) by email for all statements of deficiencies.

DPH has created three email addresses to ensure that POCs can be submitted to the appropriate surveyors and regions for review:

Detailed instructions for the submission of POCs by email, including the specific email address to which the POC should be sent, will be included in the cover letter to the facility for each Statement of Deficiency.

The following must be observed when submitting POCs by email:

  • Title the email “[Facility/agency name] POC for Survey Ending [date of survey]
  • Scan the POC, signed and dated, separately from any supporting documentation
  • Scan the POC and supporting documentation as separate .pdf files
  • Name the scanned files using the facility name and ending date of the survey
  • Do not send a hard copy of the POC by mail or fax when emailing a POC

When the POC is received at the appropriate email address, the agency/provider will receive an automated response indicating that the POC has been received. Addressing the email with a facility name and date of survey will generate an auto-reply email which will serve as a receipt for the initial submission of a POC, and indicate that the POC has been received by the Department and is being processed for review.

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New Website Created on State Health Care Payment Law Implementation

The state has announced a new web page on Mass.gov that will serve as a clearinghouse for information as the state implements the new health care cost containment law signed by Governor Patrick in August.

The site will host important announcements about the new law as well as information on Grants & Demonstrations,Stakeholder Meetings andBoards, Commissions & Task Forces. 

Thanks to the advocacy efforts of the Home Care Alliance, the association has been given the authority to name members on the “Task Force Related to Behavioral, Substance Use Disorder, and Mental Health Treatment”  as Governor Deval Patrick, joined by Secretary Jay Gonzalez, Secretary JudyAnn Bigby, Rep. Steven Walsh, Rep. Ronald Mariano,  Attorney General Martha Coakley, Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo, signs the health care cost containment bill in Nurses' Hall. well as the “Commission to Review Public Payer Reimbursement Rates.”

The website also announces meetings to inform stakeholders of progress and potential opportunities related to the new law so those interested are encouraged to check the site regularly and stay tuned to our blog for other important updates.

Return to www.thinkhomecare.org.

State Budget Advocacy Needed on Telehealth

The FY13 state budget conference committee that will meld the House and Senate budget proposals are in negotiations and HCA needs your help in advocating so that we can achieve MassHealth reimbursement of telehealth services and adequate funding in the state home care programs.  (According to Mass Home Care, there were 935 elders on the Enhanced Community Options program waiting list as of May, 2012.)

Members and advocates can do their part by calling or emailing the members of the conference committee and asking them to:

  1. Support Senate budget amendment #692 which would direct Masshealth to reimburse for telehealth services
  2. Support the House funding proposal over the Senate’s for Enhanced Community Options Program (ECOP), line-item 9110-1500.  The House budget proposal gives the ECOP program $1.327 million more than the Senate.
  3. Support House funding proposal over the Senate’s for Elder Home Care Purchased Services, line-item 9110-1630.  The House budget gives almost $500,000 more dollars to this account which funds the Basic Elder Home Care program.

Here are the names, email addresses and phone numbers of the conference committee:

The telehealth amendment language, data, and talking points are all available on a fact sheet prepared by the Alliance.  Please contact these legislators today, even if they do not represent your area.  Please urge your legislators to do all he/she can to support this funding. In addition, when you speak to your Senator’s office, be sure to thank the Senate for adding this critical funding to their FY13 budget proposal.

If you or the legislators you speak with have any questions, contact James Fuccione at HCA.

Return to www.thinkhomecare.org.