Connect Archives

July 2017

Monday, July 17, 2017

New Leadership, New Resources, New Direction

Health First Network, Inc. and OpenHealth, LLC announce a strategic partnership to help independent physicians navigate the troubled waters of healthcare changes as both a partner and supporter.

Health First Network, Inc. and OpenHealth, LLC are working together to create a clinically integrated network of physicians with the goal to enhance outcomes, increase access, and improve success in a value based universe.

The partnership combines Health First Network’s comprehensive network of physicians with OpenHealth’s expertise in business solutions and leading platform technologies to deliver solutions for today’s ever-changing healthcare environment.

The joint venture is being led by Mr. James West. Mr. West is a healthcare entrepreneur who has experience starting and building healthcare companies in the areas of diagnostic services, genetics, DME and Care Management. He works to stay in front of innovation and healthcare reform. Like many other thought leaders, he sees great opportunity for providers in the structural changes that will occur in 2017 and beyond. He is committed to bringing clear solutions to complicated problems that will enable the provider to flourish regardless of change.

Medicare proposes 2018 MIPS and APM changes

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the proposed rule changing the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and alternative payment models (APMs) participation options and requirements for 2018. Key provisions of the proposed rule would:
• Establish MIPS reporting requirements for 2018;
• Delay the previously-finalized 2018 requirement to upgrade 2014 Certified EHR Technology to the 2015 edition;
• Increase the low-volume threshold;
• Delay implementation of the cost component of MIPS;
• Incorporate the option to use facility-based scoring for facility-based clinicians;
• Offer the virtual group option for solo and small practices to aggregate their data for a shared MIPS evaluation; and
• Outline criteria for qualification as a participant in an all-payer APM, beginning in 2019.

CMS Expects All Doctors In APMs To Get A 5 Percent Bonus This Year

CMS told doctors in alternative pay models they all should expect 5 percent bonuses in the first year of the new pay system, which a former CMS official said comes as a relief to doctors who weren't sure they qualify for the bonus and now don't have to worry about their performance in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System. Separately, Avalere Health reported that performing well in MIPS has been made easier by a 61 percent increase in the number of performance measures that physicians may use.

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Physicians Joining the Network

Health First Network would like to welcome the most recent physicians to join the Network:
Suzanne Duncan, M.D. Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
Kelly Heegard, M.D. Nephrology
Benjamin Konell, D.O. Family Practice
Jeffery Weiland, DPM Podiatry
Timothy Ehiabor, M.D. Hospitalist
Eric Hartman, M.D. Hospitalist
Diane Hudson, M.D. Family Practice
Kevin Bradley, M.D. Radiology
David Stoneking, D.O. Hospitalist

Office Depot/OfficeMax Discount Program

HFNI Members, get custom-discounted pricing and more with your Store Purchasing Card. When you shop at any Office Depot or Office Max store, you’ll always get the lower of the retail store price or your custom-discounted price.

Plus, get deep discounts on black & white copies, color copies, binding, folding and cutting at our Copy and Print Center.

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CALL US TO PARTICIPATE IN HFNI'S TRACK ONE PLUS ACO. JULY 15TH DEADLINE APPROACHING.

HFNI will be launching an APM (ACO track 1 plus) for 2018. If you are interested in participating, please contact Jackie Murph or Chuck Trinchitella at 850-438-0818 for details and eligibility information.

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CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

HFNI has been contacted by our physician's offices about the following job openings.

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