May 2023 Newsletter

Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers! And Happy Memorial Day! Remember our military (including moms) on Memorial Day that have sacrificed ALL to fight and maintain our country’s freedom!

May is Better Speech and Hearing Month

Resources available for your BSHM education and preparing for June Dysphagia Awareness Month!

This annual event provides opportunities to raise awareness about what we do! This is how we educate that we are essential in times like this. We need to let others know what we do and what we need to effectively carry out our responsibilities. This is the month to advocate! ASHA has many resources to help you at May is also American Stroke Awareness Month with the National Stroke Association. Some other good resources on include:

    By: Ronda Polansky M.S. CCC-SLP
    Patient, Caregiver, and Healthcare Professional Educational Reference Sheets and Handouts for Effective Dysphagia Rehabilitation. Over 30 handouts on specific disorders in dysphagia in ONE location to use in your practice, plus a resource section for SLP’s on cranial nerve testing, pharyngeal exercises, and treatment techniques. A need to have booklet in your therapy bag!! Cost: $40.00. (+S&H). Discounted to $30.00 for MBSH Month. Call us, we will get one out to you!
  • DVD or jump drive – What You Can Not See at Bedside
    By: Ronda Polansky M.S. CCC-SLP and Pam Ragland M.S. CCC-SLP
    Copies of MBSS studies for education of staff and families on various disorders and clear episodes of penetrations and aspirations. Cost - $40.00 (plus S & H). Discounted to $30.00 for MBSH Month. Great educational tool for anyone! These are the same videos we presented at TSHA.
  • Modern Dysphagia Cooking
    The team at SimplyThick created recipes incorporating the IDDSI Framework. They poured their hearts & resources into making the ultimate guide for dysphagia diet cooking. A MUST HAVE reference tool for our dysphagia patients and their families & caregivers!

Memorial Day Holiday

DiagnosTEX will not be operating vans on Monday May 29tht for the holiday. Please keep this in mind when scheduling your MBSS around that time. We will run vans Tuesday through Friday that week. We have veterans working for DiagnosTEX. We honor them, any others who have served, and those who are currently sacrificing for our freedom! We also remember those who paid the ultimate price for our country and our freedom today! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to all the veterans who served and are serving our country for the freedom we cherish.

Local May CEU Opportunity – Deciphering Dysphagia with Ampcare’s ESP™

Course location: Texas Woman’s University - T. Boone Pickens Institute of Health Sciences – Dallas Center. 5500 Southwestern Medical Ave. Room 2706, Dallas, TX 75235. Register at the following link to:

Welcome to DiagnosTEX

We would like to welcome Sunnye Thompson to the DTEX SLP team and Manual Majia to the tech team! We are so excited to have them both on our clinical team! Sunnye will be progressing through DiagnosTEX MBSS training over the next several months. Look forward to them getting to know everyone in the field!

CMS Payments in 2024

With the number of nursing home beds in decline across the United States — and providers large and small divesting of facilities, exiting the industry or shutting down completely — some organizations are finding ways to grow. The federal government this past month proposed its payment rate update to skilled nursing facility (SNF) reimbursements for fiscal 2024, which includes a net increase of 3.7%, or approximately $1.2 billion, in Medicare Part A payments to SNFs. CMS issued the proposed rule to update Medicare payment policies and rates for skilled nursing facilities under the Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System (PPS). CMS also noted that its initial analysis of the PDPM’s implementation in 2020 showed that an unintended increase in payments of approximately 5%, or $1.7 billion, occurred per year. Among other measures, CMS is proposing the adoption of a discharge function score, a measure to assess the hospitalization rate of long-stay residents, both beginning in 2027, as well as a measure that assesses patient falls with major injury rates of long-stay residents. In the interest of advancing health equity, CMS also is proposing to reward SNFs that serve people dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. Facilities with a resident population consisting of at least 20% duals during the reporting period would be eligible for bonus points for high performance. In January, Skilled Nursing News reported that denials jeopardize post-acute recovery for Medicare Advantage (MA) patients, who, in some circumstances, would be sent to a nursing home from the hospital, only to have the MA plan call to say the patient can only stay in the facility for three days. This new rule may mitigate these issues, by requiring plans to streamline prior authorization practices. Overall, the rule will have a chilling effect on MA plans efforts to really “grind down” on SNF utilization.

Medicare Advantage (MA) Plans

DiagnosTEX is in network with all MA plans. The only plan MA plan, the refuses to pay for the convenience of mobile is Humana. DiagnosTEX provides a special rate for Humana patients, please call for details. Please encourage your patients and families that have Humana to voice their opinion and concerns of Humana directly for not allowing mobile as an option to those they service, as this service is paid for by Medicare!