Special report on Summit 2014 in this month’s JASE

Last fall the ASE Foundation (ASEF) gathered leaders from across the healthcare spectrum in the nation’s capital to offer a variety of unique perspectives on the transition to value-based healthcare, with a focus on the role of cardiovascular ultrasound in the changing environment. The summary report from this first-of-its-kind event has now been published in the July issue of JASE, and will serve as an excellent resource for our members to demonstrate the value of echocardiography to colleagues, administrators, and others in the healthcare community.

In addition, ASEF has added speaker slides and video summaries of two panels to the Summit 2014 website, and will continue to add additional videos and other resources as often as possible.  One of the highlights of the program featured a panel session with three patients whose care was directly impacted by the use of echocardiography. Click here to watch Sarah Woodruff, an adult with congenital heart disease, talk about the value that echo has brought to her life.

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Submit Images for ASE’s 2016 Calendar

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New Category III codes announced July 1, 2015

On July 1, 2015 the American Medical Association (AMA) released its semi-annual update to its list of CPT Category III codes. The AMA identified 34 new Category III codes; these codes all are scheduled to become effective as of January 1, 2016.  Of particular interest to Echocardiographers is 0399T – Myocardial strain imaging as described below:

  • 0399T: Myocardial strain imaging (quantitative assessment of myocardial mechanics using image-based analysis of local myocardial dynamics)
    ►(Use 0399T in conjunction with 93303, 93304, 93306, 93307, 93308, 93312, 93314, 93315, 93317, 93350, 93351, 93355)◄
    ►(Report 0399T once per session)◄

Reminders for your practice

  1. Typically Category III codes replace unlisted codes that were previously used for new procedures or services.   Prepare to update your charge sheets.
  2. If a Category III code describes the procedure or service performed, it must be reported. An unlisted code or less specific Category I cannot be reported in place of an active Category III code.
  3. Reimbursement of Category III codes is at the discretion of payers.  During the six months between announcement of new Category III code and active date, practices interested in utilizing new code should begin working with local payers to obtain coverage and payment.
  4. Category III codes are released on a semi-annual basis in January and July and are published on the AMA’s website.  Please reference the AMA website for a complete listing of all recently approved Category III codes

Also, with the passage of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACA) Congress permanently repealed and replaced the Sustainable Growth Rate Formula and a providing to increase the Medicare conversation faction by .05%. This increase will go into effect today, July 1.

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Echocardiography in Hypertension

ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY IN HYPERTENSION — PROVIDING THE FULL PICTURE TO IMPROVE PATIENT CARE. Read release here.

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Claim CME from ASE 2015

Learn how to claim your CME from ASE 2015 here.

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Dr. Susan E. Wiegers elected President of the American Society of Echocardiography

Read release here.

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Register for ASE 2015 onsite

Pre-Registration for ASE 2015 has ended. Please register onsite at the Hynes Convention Center, Level 2 beginning Friday, June 12 at 12:00 pm. We look forward to seeing you in Boston!

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Conference Mirrors the Global Role of Cardiovascular Ultrasound during the American Society of Echocardiography’s 26th Annual Scientific Sessions

Read release here.

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Plan to Attend the ASE’s Annual Business Meeting

All members are invited to the ASE’s business meeting, awards presentation and Edler Lecture.  This important event will be held in the  Ballroom B from 8:00-9:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 14 at the Hynes Convention Center, Boston, MA during the ASE’s 26th Annual Scientific Sessions.  During this meeting, the organization’s leadership will present the Society’s new Board of Directors, review ASE’s finances, honor the outgoing and incoming presidents, and provide recognition to the new FASE recipients and scholarship winners.   Members are encouraged to read the official minutes from the previous business meeting (June 2014). These have been posted online for your review.

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CMS released provider information on Parts A and B Providers, Costs, Services, and Trends

This week, US CMS has published the third annual release of the Medicare hospital utilization and payment data (both inpatient and outpatient) and the second annual release of the physician and other supplier utilization and payment data. As they did last year, state and national media outlets are expected to publish names and details of top billers in forthcoming coverage of this year’s data.

CMS files can be searched by specialty or by state which allows you to compare yourselves to your peers. For more information please visit here.

As always, ASE will monitor press coverage of this data release in the coming weeks, and will continue to alert our members if any articles emerge that are particularly concerning for echocardiography.

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