November 2013 newsletter


November 2013

Clinical Café Newsletter

By: Ronda Polansky M.S. CCC-SLP

Happy Thanksgiving!

There is no better time to express our appreciation for your business and friendship! The friendship of those we serve is the foundation of our success serving the DFW area!


This is the season to reflect on your blessings and those things for which you feel most thankful.  I know at DiagnosTEX, we are incredibly thankful for each and every one of you who use us as your preferred mobile MBSS provider and have shared your friendship and support over the years. We wish you and your families and very Happy Thanksgiving with many, many blessings this holiday season!


DiagnosTEX November Holiday Schedule       Swallow and be thankful!       DiagnosTEX will be closed on Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, November 28thand Friday the 29th, to count our blessings and spend time with our families. We want to meet all of your MBSS needs because we know PO feeding becomes important on many levels to many of your patients around the holidays, especially when Thanksgiving is traditionally planned and prepared with a great deal of attention to food.  We also want to be fair and accommodating to each DiagnosTEX employee and their families. We are so thankful for them as well!  Please keep our holiday schedules in mind when scheduling your MBSS at the end of November (and December)!  ******Please take note and keep in mind that during this busy time of year, specific requests for specific times and/or days become exponentially difficult to accommodate.  We may be unable to quickly schedule your patient with certain time and day requests. Please notify your staff, patients, and families of this. ****** DiagnosTEX bases our mobile clinic schedules by geographical areas for time, efficiency and cost. If your patient’s schedule is limited to certain days and times, we recommend an outpatient facility (such as a hospital).  Our mobile service offers convenience in the equipment coming to you, not for the flexibility of specific days and time schedules.  Mobile offices also require flexibility in time; we are subject to many factors that can dramatically change our travel during the day and subsequently alter the exact time we may arrive.  We make a heartfelt effort to arrive during our scheduled time, but there are often things that are out of our control that may change our arrival time. We will always call to keep you updated on our ETA.


IT’S HERE!!!   2013 Fall DiagnosTEX CEU Course Don’t Take Your Eye Off The Goal! Ethics & Compliance Matters!  Friday November 8, 2013 in Hurst, TX (registration information enclosed)

It is a new healthcare era.  New documentation requirements, new government control, new audit groups, reimbursement changes, and rating requirements. This course will cover documentation areas of the medical record you are creating, goal writing, new Medicare guidelines, liability issues and the ethics behind it all. Whether you are a new SLP in the field or an experienced SLP, this course will help your documentation as we all learn to adapt as the healthcare system we know changes each year. (This will cover 2 hours of your required Ethics credits).

Total CEU credits – TSHA – 6 hours  Cost: $70.00. Discount for those who use DiagnosTEX as their MBSS provider: Cost: $55.00 (our way of saying THANK YOU for your support and commitment to us!)

LOCAL ESTIM Course in Fort Worth!!!  Same great course in 2 evening sessions! Tuesday Dec 3rd from 3pm-7pm and Thursday Dec 5th from 3pm to 7pm at Cook’s Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth, TX.  For more information and registration go to  Don’t miss it!!!


The 2014 DiagnosTEX Dysphagia Calendar will be available next month!  Can you believe 2014 is that close??!!!


ASHA Convention– November 14-16 in Chicago!  Stop by and see AMPCARE while you are there!  Keep up with AMPCARE and upcoming E-stim conferences at


Five most Common Claim Mistakes to AVOID ( from Healthcare Compliance Newsletter)

Mistake # 1 – Orders gone AWOL – orders must be part of the medical record

Mistake # 2 – Illegible Records – Illegible records are as good as NO records at all

Mistake #3 – Medical Necessity – Medical necessity denials are clinical denials.

Mistake # 4 – Ignoring Payor’s requests – Act promptly to supply all requested information

Mistake # 5 – Documentation? What Documentation? – Health records support coding, which in turn supports billing. Staff members responsible for sending patient records must recognize the documentation be complete to fulfill payer requests. (this includes Hx/Consult forms)


Medicare changes for those with progressive neurological disorders The legal settlement of the Jimmo vs Sebelius Class Action lawsuit has changed the healthcare field as it required Medicare to establish new policy guidelines for services to those with progressive disorders, including Parkinson’s disease and dementia. The Improvement Standard, often used in the past, by Medicare, to deny services to this population, can no longer be used as the only denial criteria.  Evidence of medical necessity, including the need for skilled services and use of evidence based intervention will not be criteria when reviewing claims.


It’s the end of the year – several people have license renewal due. Some information for you regarding questions we get asked often:

  • Will I have to take the Jurisprudence exam every time I renew my license?

No. Unless the rules are changed by the State Board at some point in the future, the Jurisprudence Exam must be taken by 1) initial applicants for a license; and 2) individuals who renew their license after January 1, 2010 and who have never previously taken the exam.

  • Amendments to Texas Occupations Code 401 (Senate Bill (SB) 662, 82nd Legislature, Regular Session (2011)) have added a new requirement for all applicants and all licensees to be fingerprinted for all license applications and license renewals postmarked on or after March 1, 2012.


DiagnosTEX QA During the month of October, we started our annual QA again, and will be following up on all the patients that we serviced in October beginning this month.  Thank you in advance for assisting us with this.  This year, I have already shared the last 3 years of our QA with ASHA, the Health Care Reform Committee and CMS.  This is amazing documentation for the support of MBSS on so many levels.  We will share the results with you when they are completed.


National Stroke Assoication(NSA)  – Clinical Trial Recruiting Investigators NOW (PBA) – Pseudobulbar affect is a neurologic condition that can occur when certain neurologic diseases or brain injuries damage the areas of the brain that control normal expression of emotion. The condition of pseudobulbar affect (PBA) results in episodes of crying or laughing that are often sudden and exaggerated or do not match what the person is feeling inside. Nearly 2 million Americans with certain neurologic conditions or brain injuries are estimated to suffer from PBA. PBA can affect men and women, old and young. A recent prevalence study (PRISM I) revealed that 36.7% of all neurologic patients (N=5290)  (Alzheimer’s, ALS, MS, Parkinson’s, Stroke, TBI) surveyed had PBA symptoms. The prevalence in the stroke population was 38% PRISM II is an Open-label, Multicenter study in patients with PBA and either stroke, dementia or TBI. Patients with a clinical diagnosis of PBA and who meet all other inclusion and exclusion criteria will be eligible to participate and receive NUEDEXTA for 12 weeks. During the three-month duration of the study, participants will be asked to visit the investigator site three times for safety and effectiveness measures and study-related examinations. In addition to symptom management, the study will evaluate the potential relationship of various patient-reported outcomes. Approximately 150 qualified study centers will conduct this investigation. There are still opportunities to participate as an investigator. To learn more about this study and to find out if you are eligible to participate as an investigator, please call 1-855-477-4762.