Author Archive

Medicaid Banner Message: September Physician Services Webinars

The Department of Community Health (DCH) and Gainwell Technologies invite you to participate in one of the Physician Services webinars scheduled during the month of September 2022. There will be ten online webinars available. Providers are encouraged to send their practice managers and billing staff, as well as business associates, including billing/service agents that submit Medicaid claims. The webinars will provide important information you will need to know on the following topics including, but not limited to:

  • Eligibility Verification
  • Procedure Search
  • Common Denials
  • +More

To ensure all Georgia Medicaid providers can attend at least one webinar, there will be ten webinars on the dates below:

  • Wednesday, September 14, 2022
  • Tuesday, September 20, 2022
  • Thursday, September 22, 2022
  • Monday, September 26, 2022
  • Friday, September 30, 2022

Each date will have two webinars: 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM for a total of ten webinars. The webinars will be open to all territories throughout the state of Georgia. Attendees must individually register to reserve a seat. The registration must be completed online.

To register online, visit – https://forms.gle/YeqVTbE3o1omn7Nx8. Upon completion of your registration, a confirmation notice will be sent via e-mail to the address provided during registration. Please review the confirmation e-mail for accuracy.

The webinar confirmation e-mail will include:

  1. Date and time of the webinar workshop
  2. Conference phone number and pass code 
  3. Teams Meeting hyperlink

Should you have any questions regarding the Physician Services webinars for the month of September 2022, please contact Gainwell Technologies via e-mail at GAworkshopregistration@gainwelltechnologies.com.

Thank you for your continued participation in the Georgia Medicaid program.

Medicaid Banner Message: Preparing for the End of the Federal Public Health Emergency

Dear Georgia Medicaid Providers,

The Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) is preparing for the end of the Public Health Emergency (PHE) and the upcoming redeterminations of Medicaid member eligibility.

We are seeking your assistance with this effort. When you meet with Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids members, please remind them to update their account information. This is the first step in the process to ensure eligible members keep their coverage when the federal Public Health Emergency ends.

Since the start of the Public Health Emergency, we have maintained all members on the Medicaid rolls with certain exceptions. Only members who died, moved out of state, were incarcerated, or asked for their coverage to end had their cases closed.

It is important for Georgia Medicaid members to begin preparing by making sure their correct account details are listed in the Georgia Gateway customer portal.

Georgia Medicaid members can quickly and easily report any information that has changed from their last application or renewal by logging in or signing up for an account at gateway.ga.gov.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Members must contact the Social Security Administration (SSA).

This includes changes to their phone numbers (mobile or land line), email addresses, physical addresses, job or income, as well as a change in the number of people in their household.

Medicaid Update: Coverage of Medically Necessary Donor Human Breast Milk

Effective July 1, 2022, for claims with dates of service beginning July 1, 2022 and after, Donor Human Breast Milk is covered for Medicaid and CHIP members, ages 0-6 months, in the inpatient hospital setting.  Providers must bill for Donor Human Breast Milk utilizing CPT code T2101.  The reimbursement rate is $4.89 per ounce/unit.  The maximum number of allowable ounces/units is 15 ounces/units per day. The maximum allowable units per member, per lifetime is 1,260 units.

Should you have additional questions or concerns, please contact the Gainwell Technologies Call Center at 770-325-9600 or 1-800-766-4456 or contact us at www.mmis.georgia.gov.

 

GAFP Nominating committee seeks candidates for 2023 Board of Directors

To:       All Active and Life GAFP Members in All Districts

From:   Susana A. Alfonso, MD, MHCM, FAAFP – Chair, Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee is working to compile a slate of candidates for the 2023 GAFP Board of Directors.  GAFP leadership has a history of excelling at both the state and national levels and far outpaces other physician groups in innovative and new initiatives.

The Congress of Delegates will vote on the slate for the 2023 Board in late summer.  (Residents and Medical Students will hold their own elections in the fall.)

If you are interested in becoming more active in the Georgia Academy, please consider applying.  Your time commitment is 4 meetings a year (typically March, June, August and November) and being available to GAFP leaders, staff, and your district colleagues should issues emerge that require your leadership input and participation.

All Board members receive one free registration per year for either our Summer CME or Annual Meeting as a token of our appreciation for your hard work.

Board members are asked to be the eyes and ears of your community and bring to leadership issues important to family physicians from your hometown

Please click this link, https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/K5SMJ7T and respond by May 23rd if you are interested in applying for the 2023 Board. 

Potential vacancies are listed below:

Officers

*President-Elect (automatically becomes President in November 2022 and Board Chair in November 2023)

*Secretary (3-year term)

*Vice President (1-year term)

*COD Speaker (1-year term)

COD Vice Speaker (1-year term)

Updated Recommendations for Adenovirus Testing and Reporting of Children with Acute Hepatitis of Unknown Etiology

CDC HEALTH UPDATE

Distributed via the CDC Health Alert Network

May 11, 2022, 12:15 PM ET  

CDCHAN-00465

Summary

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is issuing this Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Update to provide clinicians and public health authorities with updated information about an epidemiologic investigation of pediatric cases of hepatitis of unknown etiology in the United States. This investigation focuses on collecting information to describe the epidemiology, etiology, clinical presentation, severity, and risk factors related to illness and to identify any relationship between adenovirus infection or other factors and hepatitis. As of May 5, 2022, CDC and state partners are investigating 109 children with hepatitis of unknown origin across 25 states and territories, more than half of whom have tested positive for adenovirus with more than 90% hospitalized, 14% with liver transplants, and five deaths under investigation. Because this investigation is ongoing and includes reviewing cases of hepatitis of unknown cause with onset since October 2021, patients under investigation are not limited to current or newly diagnosed pediatric hepatitis illnesses.

This HAN Health Update also provides updated recommendations for testing specimens from patients under investigation. It is an update to a HAN Health Advisory that CDC issued on April 21, 2022, that initially notified clinicians and public health authorities of children identified with hepatitis of unknown origin and adenovirus infection.

Background

A cluster of pediatric cases of hepatitis without an apparent etiology was identified and reported to CDC in November 2021. A possible association between pediatric hepatitis and adenovirus infection is under investigation after laboratory testing identified adenovirus infection in all nine patients in the initial cluster; the five specimens that could be typed were all adenovirus type 41. Investigators continue to examine the role of other possible causes and identify contributing factors.

Recommendations for Clinicians

  • Clinicians should continue to follow standard practice for evaluating and managing patients with hepatitis of known and unknown etiology.
  • Clinicians are recommended to consider adenovirus testing for patients with hepatitis of unknown etiology and to report such cases to their state or jurisdictional public health authorities.
  • Because the potential relationship between adenovirus infection and hepatitis is still under investigation, clinicians should consider collecting the following specimen types if available from pediatric patients with hepatitis of unknown cause for adenovirus detection:  
  • Blood specimen collected in Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid (EDTA) (whole blood, plasma, or serum); whole blood is preferred to plasma and serum)
  • Respiratory specimen (nasopharyngeal swab, sputum, or bronchioalveolar lavage [BAL])
  • Stool specimen or rectal swab; a stool specimen is preferred to a rectal swab
  • Liver tissue, if a biopsy was clinically indicated, or if tissue from native liver explant or autopsy is available: 
  • Formalin-fixed, paraffin embedded (FFPE) liver tissue
  • Fresh liver tissue, frozen on dry ice or liquid nitrogen immediately or as soon as possible, and stored at ≤ -70°C

Nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT), such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), is preferred for adenovirus detection (currently not available for FFPE liver biopsy or native liver explant). Testing whole blood by PCR is more sensitive to and is preferred over testing plasma by PCR. 

Were possible, clinical specimens should be tested locally to ensure timely results for patient care. For any diagnostic testing needs beyond the local capacity, CDC recommends that clinicians contact their state public health laboratory. For More Information

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protects people’s health and safety by preventing and controlling diseases and injuries; enhances health decisions by providing credible information on critical health issues; and promotes healthy living through strong partnerships with local, national, and international organizations.

 

__________________________________________________________________________________

Categories of Health Alert Network messages:

Health Alert          Requires immediate action or attention; highest level of importance

Health Advisory   May not require immediate action; provides important information for a specific incident or situation

Health Update      Unlikely to require immediate action; provides updated information regarding an incident or situation

HAN Info Service Does not require immediate action; provides general public health information

Virtual KSA Opportunities Up to 12 CME Credits Pending

We are proud to present three virtual opportunities to complete ABFM Knowledge Self-Assessment Workshops coming up in May and June. Consider adding one (or all three) of these convenient virtual opportunities to your Summer Family Medicine Weekend Conference Registration. If you cannot attend the Family Medicine Weekend, you can still attend these virtual sessions.

Hypertension – A Virtual KSA Opportunity 
Saturday, May 14, 2022
10:00 am – 2:00 pm

NEW!  Care of the Older Adult – A Virtual KSA Opportunity
Saturday, May 21, 2022
10:00 am – 2:00 pm

NEW!  Care of Hospital Patients – A Virtual KSA Opportunity
Saturday, June 4, 2022
10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Register here.

Up to 12 CME credits pending.

Waves of Change, Oceans of Opportunity – Join Your Colleagues for Summer Fun and CME

The Georgia Academy of Family Physicians’ 2022 Summer Family Medicine Weekend is approaching rapidly. 

BOOK ONLINE HERE to stay in the brand-new Hotel Effie, or BOOK ONLINE HERE for the Sandestin Resort property to reserve a suite or villa. The hotel deadline is May 15, so be sure to secure your room, suite or villa soon as spaces are filling up.

In addition, we are putting the fun back in this year since we are all in person after two years!  Join us for the family fun event at the marina.  We’ve planned a castle-building contest where you will team up, be coached by a sandcastle master pro, build a masterpiece, and win a championship medal. 

Limited to first 20 families with a maximum of  five family members.

We look forward to seeing you in Destin this June.

Early Bird Registration also ends Sunday, May 15, 2022.  Up to 20 CME credits are pending, for summer meeting only. Meeting registration here on our website at www.gafp.org

AAFP Shares New Vaccination Resources For World Immunization Week

AAFP has developed fact sheets for physician members and clinical staff to address vaccine skepticism and fear.

Click the links to download resources.

Building Confidence When Talking to Parents About Children’s Vaccine- Responses to common questions and misconceptions parents may have about vaccines for children.

How to Approach Conversations With Parents About Routine Pediatric VaccinationsTips for effectively communicating with families.

National Research Project on Domestic Violence – Volunteers Needed

Dear American Academy of Family Physicians member:

My name is Courtney Chau and I am a researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. I am conducting a research project to examine the actions physicians take in response to disclosure or suspicion of domestic violence in their patients’ relationships. 

This research project will fill a gap in the existing literature by describing how physicians in the United States currently respond to situations in which patients are or may be experiencing domestic violence, setting the stage to determine the best next steps to move forward in trauma-informed care.

I am reaching out to invite you to participate in this research study. I would deeply appreciate it if you would be willing to share your insights in an approximately 60-minute interview. Participation is voluntary and you are welcome to withdraw at any time. No compensation will be provided for participation in this study.

Participation is limited to emergency medicine, plastic surgery, primary care, and obstetrics and/or gynecology physicians who are 30 years old or above.

If you are willing to participate, please fill out this form and I will reach out to you to schedule an interview. If you have any questions, please reach out to me at cachau@berkeley.edu.

Warm regards,

Courtney Chau
Undergraduate Researcher

Dr. Mary Lesser
Principal Investigator

2022 Georgia Academy of Family Physicians Awards Nominations Now Open

It’s award nomination season. GAFP would like you to think about honoring a fellow Georgia family physician. Please help your Georgia family physicians in recognizing exemplary service to the profession of family medicine and contributions to our state, by nominating someone for one of the following awards:

 

Awards Deadline To Submit Nominations
Family Medicine Community and Volunteer Services Award May 16, 2022
Georgia Family Physician of The Year

 

May 16, 2022
Family Medicine Educator of The Year

 

May 16, 2022

The Membership Committee will nominate a slate to be approved by the Board of Directors, and presentation of the awards will be held during the 2022 GAFP Annual Meeting in November. Many noteworthy colleagues may not have been considered for an award because they were not nominated.  Complete and download an electronic copy of the awards nomination package or go to https://www.gafp.org/awards-accolades/.

The awards nomination package includes the awards and criteria, nomination forms and a list of past winners of each award.  Please complete the online fillable PDF nomination form and email it to Ali Bohannon, manager of membership and operations at abohannon@gafp.org or contact her at 1-800-392-3841.