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Policy Areas

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On Thursday, December 10, 2015, from 12:30–1:30 pm, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will conduct a special open door forum to provide a summary of the dry run for inpatient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs) on all-cause unplanned readmissions for 30-day post discharge from IRFs. To participate in the call, dial: 800-837-1935; conference ID: 93892614. Prior to the call, the presentation slides will be posted to the IRF Quality Reporting Spotlight & Announcements page on the CMS website.

The Bureau of Autism Services is conducting a preliminary survey to help inform the design of services for individuals with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who are transitioning out of high school, including those who may have had juvenile justice contact or psychiatric hospitalizations. The survey is designed to be completed by individuals with ASD and their families and caregivers. Surveys should be completed by Friday, December 4. Any questions about this survey can be sent via email to the Bureau of Autism Services.

Provider Transformation Series
ANCOR and the US Office of Disability Employment Policy are offering a technical assistance series, Virtual Provider Transformation Technical Assistance. This is a six-month program that will feature webinars every three weeks from December 2015 through March 2016. Webinar topics to assist agencies transitioning to community integrated employment services include: Leadership, Strategic Planning, Operations Focus, Workforce Focus, Customer Focus, and Measuring Results. Registration deadline is Monday, November 30, 2015.

On November 23, the leadership of the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS), including Deputy Secretary Dennis Marion and Medical Director Dr. Dale Adair, provided a webcast presentation on the development of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The webcast to more than 130 RCPA members reviewed the current concepts and recommendations developed by a clinical work group, assisting OMHSAS in the development of ABA medical necessity guidelines, clarifying the authorization pathway for Behavioral Health Rehabilitation Services for children and adolescents diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

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The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released a Request for Information (RFI) in the November 20, 2015 Federal Register. The RFI is geared to Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities (IRFs) and will assist in the design and development of a survey regarding patient and family member experiences with the care received in the IRF. Comments will be received until 5:00 pm on Tuesday, January 19, 2016.

RCPA Input Session for Medical Necessity Guidelines for BHRS including Applied Behavioral Analysis

In August 2015, OMHSAS convened a small, time-limited clinical work group to assist in the development of new Medical Necessity Guidelines (MNG) for children and adolescents with ASD. The guidelines are specific to Applied Behavioral Analysis within the home and community based services level of care. The work group is seeking stakeholder feedback on preliminary MNG content prior to issuing recommendations to OMHSAS.

OMHSAS will present an update with Dennis Marion via webcast on Monday, November 23, 2015 from 9:30 – 10:30 am. OMHSAS Deputy Secretary Marion will provide RCPA members with updates from OMHSAS;

L&I State Plan
RCPA has been asked by the executive director of the Senate Labor & Industry (L&I) Committee to provide recommendations related to workforce development for the state’s Department of L&I Unified State Plan, required by the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act. Please share your suggestions with Linda Drummond by Sunday, November 22.

ODP Updates
The Office of Developmental Programs has released the following information:

Based on the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act enacted in 2014, the state’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) is required to write its own stand-alone annual state plan, “Vocational Rehabilitation Services Portion of the Combined State Plan.” This is a four-year workforce development strategy. The combined state plan will be available for public comment in January of 2016.