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October 2019
Spreading Success
Opioid Reduction Project Improves Emergency Department Care
Through a Special Innovation Project (SIP), awarded from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), atom Alliance worked collaboratively with multiple partners and stakeholders and with area physicians, nurse practitioners and dentists in Clinton County, Indiana to decrease opioid use and prescribing.

In the first year of the project, 723 fewer opioid prescriptions were written by emergency department physicians. By January 2019, an 83 percent reduction in prescribing of opioids in the emergency department has been achieved for this Indiana community. This greatly reduced the number of opioid tablets available for misuse or diversion.

Now you can download our Project Implementation Guide to help your community develop a similar project and reduce opioid prescriptions from the emergency department.
Get Credit for Something You May Already Be Doing
Providers can get Quality Payment Program credit for a process already in place. You may need to review and update your existing process. 

"IA PSPA 6: Consultation of the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program" is an improvement activity in which many providers are already participating. Listen to this new, short podcast to learn what is recommended to document for auditing purposes and how to run the reports recommended you retain in either the Tennessee or Alabama prescription drug monitoring programs.
Your Recommendation Often Determines a Patient’s Vaccination Decision
Patient barriers often prevent patients from receiving the vaccines they need. Barriers may include lack of education, misinformation and fear of vaccines. Studies show that spending more time talking with patients about vaccines and making strong recommendations improves outcomes.
MIPS Quality Measure Spotlight: Influenza Immunization
In preparation for the 2019-2020 flu season, many clinicians have chosen to report on the "Preventive Care and Screening: Influenza Immunization" MIPS quality measure (Quality ID: 110). This measure tracks the percentage of patients age six-months and older who were seen for a visit between Oct. 1 and March 31 of the current flu season and received an influenza immunization OR who reported previous receipt of an influenza immunization. 
Sharing Photos and Treats to Improve Sickle Cell Care
Qsource “popped up” at three Memphis-area hospital emergency departments (EDs) to offer a tasty frozen treat and a view of sickle cell disease (SCD) through patients’ eyes. Sickle cell patients shared revealing, poignant photographs to help ED clinicians better understand the potential stigma, challenges, and barriers to appropriate care.

Project PopSickleCell was part of National Sickle Cell Awareness Month. It supported doctors and nurses caring for sickle cell patients, particularly given the heightened awareness of pain management and the opioid epidemic. A local gourmet popsicle purveyor provided treats which were a massive hit with busy, appreciative providers we visited.

Our goal is to help emergency department staff see sickle cell disease through their patients’ eyes and to remind providers that treatment of a sickle cell pain crisis is a time-sensitive condition. Using current National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute guidelines help ensure that EDs have systematic processes in place to treat SCD in the most effective manner.

Qsource has worked with three Memphis-area healthcare systems (representing a total of 27 hospitals) and national experts to educate ED providers and patients about best practices in caring for the patient in crisis. Check out the links to media coverage below:

Upcoming Events
Oct 10 2:00pm CT
Do the Right Thing, Don't Write the Wrong Thing
Guest speaker Dr. Randy Easterling will discuss the appropriate use of opioids and their addictive nature.
Oct 15
Oct 17
How to Transform Your Practice Workflow to Succeed in MIPS: Advice for Solo and Small Group Practices
Although the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) is heading into its fourth year, some small practices may still have questions as to how to best streamline their processes to maximize their incentive payment. For those new to MIPS or for those looking to improve how they are doing, interacting with clinicians, practice managers, and persons that regularly advise small practices on succeeding in MIPS will provide key insights.

Join us for a roundtable event where panelists share their insights and challenges related to succeeding in MIPS, including topics such as care coordination techniques, effectively creating and using EHR functionalities, collaborating with community partners, engaging your staff, and how MIPS work can be aligned with other work you do to help your patients and practice succeed. (Offered twice)
View our  calendar  page for more details.
Igniting Powerful Change: A Look at Our Progress Together
Together, we have made an impact on the quality of care delivered in our states and beyond. While quality improvement is a never-ending cycle, our work as your Quality Innovation Network - Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) cycles every five years. Let's take a moment to celebrate our successes since 2014.
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This material was prepared by atom Alliance, the Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO), coordinated by Qsource for Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Mississippi and Alabama, under a contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Content presented does not necessarily reflect CMS policy.