The Pulse is the bi-weekly e-newsletter from The Physician Alliance, one of Michigan's largest physician organizations serving more than 2,200 primary care and specialty physicians.
The Pulse of The Physician Alliance
Friday, March 16, 2018
Ensuring proper screening for Pap smear tests

Appropriate use of healthcare services and tests is important for improving quality of patient care and lowering the staggering costs of care. Through Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan's Resource Stewardship Initiative, The Physician Alliance is working with practices to lower over-utilization of medical services. 

Decreasing Pap smears in women under age 21 is one of the focus areas for The Physician Alliance (also a HEDIS metric). The incidence of cervical cancer in the United States has decreased more than 50 percent in the past 30 years because of widespread screening with cervical cytology. However, the Pap smear has been identified as being unnecessary more than 40 percent of the time, according to a study in the Journal of Managed Care. To view recommended guidelines for Pap smear tests, click here.

TPA has improved the metric for decreasing Pap smears in women under age 21, from 2.4% to 1.6% (lower is better).

The Physician Alliance created an education poster to help initiate conversations with patients regarding Pap smear tests.  Visit TPA's website to view, print or order copies of this poster. 

  Choosing Wisely, a national healthcare campaign to promote important healthcare conversations between physicians and patients, is also a great source of information for this topic and others.
Health Plan Insurance Forums provide helpful insight

St. John Providence Partners In Care is hosting their annual Health Plan Insurance Forums to help practices learn more about PCP health plan incentive programs and updates for 2018.

The Health Plan Insurance Forums will be held on Thursday, April 5, 2018 from 7:30- 10:30am (Warren) or  Thursday, April 26, 2018 from 7:30-10:30am (Southfield). 

Health plan representatives from Blue Care Network, Blue Cross Complete, Total Health Care, HAP, Priority Health, United Healthcare, Molina, Meridian, Harbor Health, SmartHealth and The Physician Alliance will be available to answer your questions. The target audience for these insurance forums is practice managers and billing staff. Other office representatives are also welcome to attend.
Click here for more details and registration information. 
A heart healthy discount on a life-saving AED
Did you know that approximately 10,000 cardiac arrests occur at the workplace each year? The American Heart Association recommends that workplaces have cardiac emergency plans, just like disaster preparedness plans and cyber security plans. Here are some reasons why having an automatic external defibrillator (AED) included in your cardiac emergency plan is a good idea:
  • Onsite AEDs save precious treatment time, and may improve survival odds if used before emergency medical staff are able to arrive.
  • A heart rhythm in ventricular fibrillation may only be restored to normal by an electric shock.
  • Modern AEDs won't allow you to shock a victim that has a heartbeat, reducing the risk of doing more harm and reasons for people not to step in and help.
  • Using a defibrillator on an individual in cardiac arrest increases survival rate by 60 percent 

The Physician Alliance member practices can purchase a Zoll AED Plus package for  $1,399 (saving $400) through J&B Medical Supply, a partner in TPA's Affiliate Partners program.

 Download a flyer for more information or click here.   Contact our J&B Medical Supply representative, Mark Novak, at (248) 730-2789 or with questions or to order your AED.

*Special pricing valid for TPA members only.

Sources: American Heart Association, Cardiovascular Business, Occupational Safety and Health Administration
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