February 2018 Newsletter

Happy Valentine’s Day!

The heart has its reasons of which reason knows nothing.

National “Wear Red” Day (first Friday in February)

Here are some interesting facts about Valentine's Day.

  1. In AD 496, Pope Gelasius I declared February 14 Valentine's Day. He was a romantic!
  2. In the 1800s, doctors commonly advised their heartbroken patients to eat chocolate, claiming it would soothe their pain. I don’t know about you, but Chocolate eases my pain!
  3. Richard Cadbury produced the first box of chocolates for Valentine's Day in the late 1800s. LOVE THIS MAN! 
  4. Teachers will receive the most Valentine's Day cards, followed by children, mothers, wives, sweethearts, and pets. 
  5. About 3% of pet owners will give Valentine's Day gifts to their pets.
  6. An estimated 198 million roses were produced last year just for Valentine's Day.

Texas Speech and Hearing Association Annual Convention in Houston, March 1-3, 2018

DiagnosTEX will not have a booth in Houston but Pam and I will be presenting “What You Do Not See on a Bedside Swallow Evaluation” on Thursday, March 1 from 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm in the General Assembly Theater B. If you can fit it in your schedule, we would love to see you there. Also please make time to stop by and see Ampcare at Booth 717. You can’t miss it at the front row near the exhibit hall entrance!

The Houston Stock Show and Rodeo are going on during that time, bring your cowboy boots! 

New DiagnosTEX website has launched!  Check it out! – All of the new 2018 Paperwork is on the website ready to be downloaded.  Please update all of the required paperwork for your files. We will allow a grace period, but after February if you do not submit your paperwork on the proper forms we will not place the study on the pending list until the proper 2018 updated forms are sent in  A copy was provided in the January newsletter.  We have also been handing out packets on the mobile clinic. Call us and we will fax you one, or you can find them on our new website.

Ampcare also has a new website, be sure to check it out at www.ampcarellc.com. There are lots of new benefits and resources for those who are current Ampcare users!

Quality Assurance - As most of you know, we do QA 1x a year on 1 month worth of patients to follow up on their status. This is time-consuming and takes dedicated commitment by all SLP’s involved.  We as a company believe very strongly in quality patient care documentation and this QA data is priceless. We also believe very strongly in all healthcare professionals communicating openly about patient care and respecting each other’s dedication to this, as once the referral is made, this patient becomes patient with us both.  This information we gather has been shared in the past several years with ASHA as well as the Medicare Reform committee supporting the importance of an MBSS in the evaluation and treatment of dysphagia as well as reviewing the reimbursement levels for ST codes. THANK YOU to all who have been supportive, understanding, and consistent in talking to us about the patients, and most of all being respectful enough to return our calls in a prompt manner while acknowledging the importance of this data, not just for DTEX but for our profession. It does not go unnoticed by any of us and we know the quality healthcare professionals in how you care for your patients. We appreciate you for your support and all you do in the field.

Under HIPAA, a facility may share or disclose patient information for the following purposes:

• Treatment of the patient (e.g. consulting with other healthcare providers on diagnosis and treatment)

• Obtaining payment from the patient’s health plan

• Operational requirements (e.g. quality improvement activities or peer review)

• Complying with legally mandated reporting or disclosure

Please review The HIPAA regulations.

Influenza/Flu Positive results. – Any patient in isolation with an influenza positive test or with flu/risk/symptoms of the flu should not be seen in the mobile unit.  Our small contained mobile environment can be easily exposed and effect the fragile, elderly patients that we see during the day, despite the decontamination procedures we use.  If the patient has the flu and requires this procedure immediately, please refer to a local hospital where this type of illness can be more properly handled. Thank you for your understanding and help with this issue during this flu season. There are many respiratory infections going around this winter season.

Ampcare ESP Research published – I am sharing with you the most recent evidence-based research featuring Ampcare, the link is from the International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders (IJLCD) at http://rdcu.be/D74P

This article just became available from the IJLCD on 12/29/2017 and supports clinically meaningful treatment trends when utilizing Ampcare’s Effective Swallowing Protocol (ESP).  Go to www.ampcarellc.com to see this and more research on Ampcare ESP.

If you missed it:

The Swallow Your Pride Podcast, at www.swallowyourpridepodcast.com Episode 019 with Russ Campbell, PT, CEO of AmpCare is now available! You can now download the show notes right from the website. We highly recommend that you download the show notes and have them in front of you BEFORE you listen to this episode.  If you would like to attend a live Ampcare course, go to www.ampcarellc.com to see where the next conference is scheduled!

DiagnosTEX now in net-work with more Insurance companies for 2018 – DiagnosTEX is now in network with BCBS, Wellcare, Humana, United Healthcare, Cigna Commercial, Superior, Molina, and more to come.  Always check with our office staff, we are getting in network with more each month!

Our local SLP feature month! We have started a feature to the newsletter this summer by highlighting some of our great SLP’s in DFW! These SLP’s make a significant contribution to the evaluation and treatment of dysphagia! For the month of January 2018, we would like to feature Katherine Fowler. We have worked with Katherine for a short 8 months since 2017, as she is in her CFY, but she made an impression with our DTEX SLP’s.  She is a native Texan and was born in Lubbock but grew up in Shallowater, Texas.  She played basketball for one year at Cisco College and graduated from Texas Tech.  Katherine has the same passion for treating the geriatric population as we do and embraces the new daily adventure with dementia/Alzheimer’s patients.  Her favorite charity to support is Compassion International, where she has had the opportunity to sponsor a child and watch her grow. Her favorite restaurant is Cracker Barrel or Rosa’a, but her favorite food is the classic PB & J!.  When we asked her what was on her bucket list, her simple answer was “the whole bucket is living the life Christ gave me with joy being pursued/pursuing Him and being His salt and light and on that list is to see the world while doing it.”  Amen to that Katherine!

Thank you, Katherine, for all you do for your patients and thank you for letting DiagnosTEX be a part of your dysphagia team, we look forward to many more years of working with you in the DFW area!