February 2020
Announcements & Updates
HARP Account Needed for EQRS Users

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is planning to release the Healthcare Quality Information System (HCQIS) Access Roles and Profile (HARP) for End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Quality Reporting System (EQRS) users by the end of February 2020. All EQRS users must complete a HARP account setup.

Register for HARP Training: Please join CMS and the ESRD Outreach, Communication, and Training (EOCT) Team on  Thursday, February 13, 2020  or  Wednesday, February 19, 2020  at 2:00 PM ET for HARP Training. These informative educational sessions will provide attendees with an overview of how to: Establish a HARP account as an existing Enterprise Identity Data Management (EIDM) account holder, register for a new HARP account, manage roles in EQRS, and approve/reject role requests in EQRS as a Security Official.

For more information about HARP , please read the CROWNWeb February 2020 Newsletter.
ESRD Quality Incentive Program (QIP) Calendar Year (CY) 2020

The PowerPoint presentation and  audio recording (ZIP)   are available for the January 14, 2020 Medicare Learning Network call on the CY 2020 End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Prospective Payment System (PPS) Final Rule: ESRD ESRD QIP .
Infection Prevention Simulation Training: April 5, 2020

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health is hosting a one-day training event, Infection Prevention Best Practices in Dialysis – The Use of Simulation to Improve Practice and Patient Safety, on April 5, 2020 in Marlboro, MA. The goal of this training is to utilize simulation as a “hands on” teaching method through competency-based simulation exercises and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Core Interventions for the prevention of infections in hemodialysis settings.

There is a $25.00 registration fee which covers continental breakfast, lunch, CEUs and materials. Click here to register.
Quality Improvement Initiatives
Bloodstream Infection (BSI) Reduction

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports infections are the second leading cause of death and hospitalization among end-stage renal disease patients. The implementation of the CDC recommended practices are shown to reduce infections. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with infection prevention.

  Long-Term Catheter Reduction

The majority of dialysis patients use hemodialysis (HD) for renal replacement therapy. An organized approach to the management of vascular access has been found to be effective in reducing the amount of time a patient has a catheter in place. Creating a plan for vascular access management is the best way to ensure an organized approach that will lead to catheter freedom for your patients. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with reducing catheters.

Increasing the Number of Patients Utilizing Home Modalities

Home dialysis modalities are underutilized in the USA with only 8% of the dialysis patients undergoing renal replacement therapy at home versus 92% being treated with in-center hemodialysis. The intent of the Home Dialysis QIA is to promote referral to home dialysis modalities, identify and mitigate the barriers to timely referral, and determine the steps patients and providers can take to improve referral patterns. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with promoting appropriate home dialysis.

Increasing the Number of Patients on the Transplant Wait List

The benefits of transplantation extend to ESRD patients regardless of age, gender, or ethnicity, as well as those with common comorbid conditions, including diabetes and hypertension. The intent of the Transplant Coordination QIA is to promote
early referral to transplant, and assist patients and providers to improve referral patterns by addressing barriers identified as the patient moves through the steps identified by Sullivan et al. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with increasing the rate of patients on the transplant waiting list.

Peer Mentoring

Peer-to-peer mentoring programs have the potential to assist patients with kidney failure in managing their chronic illness and improve outcomes. Peer programs can influence goal setting, decision-making and increase self-management. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with developing a systematic process to ensure the initial training, continued training and pairing of ESRD patient mentors with patients new to dialysis (mentees).

Patient Services
My Dia lysis Plan™ - Resources for Patient Involvement in Care Plan Meetings

The University of North Carolina (UNC) Kidney Center has developed tools and resources to help patients and care providers establish greater partnership to ensure patient values and needs are represented in care planning. Visit the My Dialysis Plan™ website to access resources, plan of care video, and written materials for patients and care team members.
Patient Experience of Care

A grievance is defined as a formal or informal written or verbal complaint that is made to any member of the dialysis or transplant center staff by a patient, or the patient’s representative, regarding the patient's care or treatment. If the grievant does not feel comfortable filing a grievance with the facility a grievance may be filed directly to the Network. The following is a list of tools and resources to help dialysis facility staff with ensuring patients understand how to file a grievance, including anonymously, and improve their experience of care.

Network 1 Staff
Danielle R. Daley, MBA
Executive Director
(203) 285-1212

Sarah Keehner, RN, BSN, CNN
Quality Improvement Director
(203) 285-1214

Agata Roszkowski, LMSW
Patient Services Director
(203) 285-1213

Jaya Bhargava, PhD, CPHQ
Regional Operations Director
(203) 285-1215
Sr. Program Support Coordinator
(203) 285-1222

Megan Perras, LPN
Quality Improvement Coordinator
(203) 285-1224

Cheryl Pettway
Community Outreach Coordinator
(203) 285-1223

Krystle Gonzalez
Customer Service Manager
(203) 285-1225