EastWest 2013: Workshops, Cleveland Live!

OD Workshops*

workshops

*workshop attendance is limited, register early to reserve your space

Allied Eye Professionals – Cleveland Live!

Ever wonder what the best way to describe insurance benefits to a patient is or the best way to present anti-reflective coating? What about the best way to build and maintain a cohesive team? This will be an interactive panel of experts that will address critical areas that contribute to the patient experience.

REGISTER NOW!

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Medicare Contractor Satisfaction Indicator – Coming soon!

CMS is launching a new instrument for measuring satisfaction with your Medicare Administration Contractor (MAC). Registration began on July 8, 2013 and should take less than 1 minute to complete. A random sample of registrants will have an opportunity to express their satisfaction with their MAC to CMS.

Please visit the Medicare Contractor Satisfaction Indicator web page for more information.

Let your voice be heard!

OOA Member ODs, OSU Students Volunteer at 2013 Special Olympics

Special Olympics 2

On Saturday, June 29, 2013 , volunteers from around Ohio gathered at the Ohio State University campus to perform vision screenings for athletes participating in Special Olympics. In one day, over 130 athletes were screened, 42 pairs of prescription glasses, 44 pairs of sports goggles, and over 50 pairs of sunglasses were provided. Many comments of appreciation were heard from both the athletes and their families. Twenty-two students from Ohio State University College of Optometry and one student from Western College of Optometry volunteered their time.

Special Olympics 1

A very big thank you to the volunteer optometrists: Dr. Lynette Powell, Dr. Tracey Needham, Dr. Megan Holmes, Dr. Drusilla Grant, Dr. Cayti McDaniel, Dr. Katie Wulff, Dr. Kari Cardiff, Dr. Amy Keller, and Dr. Susan Truitt. Glasses were donated by the Lions Club Foundation International, and lenses by Bell Optical in Columbus, Ohio.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Fiscal New Year, that is, because July 1 marked the start of state government’s fiscal year 2014 and the first day of of new biennial state budget that will take the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) through June 2015. It’s a time for all of us here – working with you, our friends and stakeholders – to make a fresh start, with new energy and enthusiasm for the goals we’ve set for the years ahead.

Governor Kasich recently signed the new state budget into law, and it builds on the job-creating policies in the budget he signed just two years ago when Ohio and the nation were just beginning to climb out of the toughest economic downturn since the great depression. For example, this budget features:

  • A $2.7 billion net tax cut to make Ohio more competitive with other states and the world – for jobs and economic growth, including a 10-percent personal income tax reduction over three years and a 50 percent small-business tax deduction on the first $250,000 of business income.
  • A new Achievement Everwhere Plan for Ohio’s local schools that delivers $1.5 billion in additional funds to help create a world-class education system and encourages schools to pursue innovative new education strategies to improve student success.
  • A new funding plan for Ohio’s public colleges and universities that rewards improved graduation rates in order to make Ohio a more desirable place for job creators to expand or relocate and to strengthen our economy.
  • An additional $3 billion in federal, state and local funds to meet Ohio’s pressing transportation infrastructure needs – a crucial factor for a growing economy.

As for ODH, the state is committing this budget cycle to standardizing how healthcare is delivered across Ohio by creating efficiencies, allowing for organizations and programs to modernize their structures and addressing public health priorities – like tobacco cessation and infant health – through programs that are proven to have the greatest impact with the highest return on investment.

The new state budget will prioritize prevention activities and help Ohioans achieve and maintain good health at every stage of life. Further, this budget takes a bold step forward to change the culture of public health delivery in Ohio by facilitating the use of additional tools that will enable public health to collaborate; integrate data, programs and services; and improve the quality of services provided.

As we celebrate the state of the state’s new fiscal year, we look forward to working with you and all the Ohioans we serve. We are optimistic about the future of our agency and our outstanding programs as together we work to protect and improve the health of all Ohioans. We also want to thank the Ohio General Assembly for their forward thinking commitment to public health.

Sincerely,

Theodore E. Wymyslo, MD

Ohio Department of Health

Director

Sixty-One Percent of Ohio Physicians Go Electronic

Nationally, more than 50% of doctors and 80% of hospitals have switched from paper to electronic patient health records over the past several years, according to a recent federal announcement from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In Ohio, 61% of physicians and 94% of hospitals have gone electronic and the numbers continue to rise each month.

Click here for the full story.

Health Insurance Exchange Contracts

Opportunities to participate in Health Insurance Exchanges may in your mail.

Health Insurance Exchanges (or Marketplaces) will begin Open Enrollment in October for effective dates in 2014. There will be two exchanges: Individual and Small group Health Options Program (SHOP) for employers with 50 or fewer employees. In Ohio, the federal government is the ultimate governing authority however, the Ohio Department of Insurance (ODI) maintains a Plan Management role, meaning they will continue to regulate this market. Issuers who wanted to sell products had to file with ODI by May 31. In a June 6 press release, ODI announced 14 issuers have submitted 214 product plans for review. Later, a partial list was released:

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*CO-OP = Consumer Oriented and Operated Plan. 24 CO-OPs were established via federal ACA grants as new players in the health insurance markets. InHealth Mutual intends to use the Ohio PPO Connect network which is a partnership of HealthSpan, Quality Care Partners, Ohio Health Choice, & Ohio State University Health Plan. Your participation in any one of these individual networks dictates your participation in Ohio PPO Connect.

Other sources list Humana and Time/Assurant as applicants. In addition, we believe the managed Medicaid payers (Buckeye, CareSource, Molina, Paramount, and United HealthCare) are likely applying to sell products on the Individual Exchange. This would allow those companies to more easily retain individuals who change eligibility from Medicaid to private insurance and vice versa.

All of these products must contain Ohio’s Essential Health Benefits (EHBs) which includes adult and child annual exams, plus a child materials benefit at a minimum, as part of the medical benefit plan. Because of this, issuers are sensitive to the adequacy of the primary eye care network. You may have already received noticed from some of these organizations asking you to consider participating in their “exchange” or “marketplace” products. They do not have to do this to place products on the exchange, but if they want different terms (rates, covered services, etc.), you will likely receive a contract or amendment to your current agreement. As usual, you must prudently review these terms to make the best business decision for your practice, including the base contract in you are sent an amendment. Some issuers are taking a passive approach to amending contacts by saying “failure to timely object constitutes your acceptance” so read these communications carefully.

This is an unproven market, so it is nearly impossible to project the risks/rewards of participation. However, this is the new market for individual and small group health insurance. A Milliman analysis fro Ohio projected the individual market may more than double from 350,000 to 735,000, due mostly to the individual mandate, and an additional 170,000 covered via SHOP. While there will continue to be products available outside the exchanges, premium subsidies for those with annual incomes between 100-400% of the federal poverty level are only available inside the individual exchange and small business must purchase via the SHIP to receive potential tax credits.

For more detailed information on Health Insurance Exchanges or Marketplaces see the resources from the Health Policy Institute of Ohio at http://www.healthpolicyohio.org/resources/publications/

Dr. Frasco Receives InfantSEE Award

Dr. Cara Frasco, who lives in Beavercreek and practices at Pioneer Vision Care in Springboro and Middletown, received the W. David Sullins InfantSEE Award at Optometry’s Meeting in San Diego.

Dr. Glen Steele, chair of the AOA InfantSEE Committee presented the award.

According to Dr. Steele, “On a local level, this year’ s recipient of the Sullins Award is from Ohio – one of the most active states for InfantSEE. She is the InfantSEE coordinator for the Dayton Area (Ohio’s Zone 9) which includes approximately 170 members. She is a mentor to the other doctors in Zone 9, offering support when needed regarding InfantSEE assessments. She coordinated the Zone 9 event for InfantSEE week in Ohio in 2011. She is an ambassador for InfantSEE in her community with colleagues and with local pediatricians. She is the perfect candidate to receive the David Sullins Award. Some have stated that “InfantSEE has not sent anyone to my office.” Dr. Cara Frasco didn’t wait for someone else. She set out to make a difference for optometry in her state and in her community.”

Dr. Frasco received her optometry degree and a concurrent master’s degree in vision science from The Ohio State University College of Optometry. She also completed a residency in pediatric optometry at the University of Houston. She became a volunteer when InfantSEE launched in 2005. Dr. Frasco is one of the leading optometrists in the country for electronic reporting of InfantSEE assessments. In 2012, she electronically reported 59 InfantSEE assessments, which was more patients than were reported from 12 states.

Dr. Frasco and her husband, Dr. Nicky Lai who is also an optometrist, have two children, Charlie, 4 and Andy, 1.

Dr. Layman Is AOA Trustee

Dr. Robert Layman of Toledo was elected Trustee of the American Optometric Association during the House of Delegates at Optometry’s Meeting in San Diego. His term is for three years. Dr. Greg Caldwell of Pennsylvania was also elected to a three-year term as trustee.

Dr. Mitch Munson of Colorado is the new president of the AOA, Dr. David Cockrell of Oklahoma is the president-elect, Dr. Steve Loomis of Colorado is vice president, and Dr. Andrea Thau of New York is the secretary-treasurer.

Dr. Layman was president of the Ohio Optometric Association in 2002. He received the AOA Optometrist of the Year Award in 2006. His practice in is Lambertville, Michigan.