Kentucky officials produce documents to answer questions about Medicaid copay policy

The Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) has produced a series of documents about the copays many people on Medicaid have already been paying. Starting January 1, 2019, everyone who is not otherwise exempt will start paying copays for some services.

Preventive services do NOT have copays. Preventive services include screenings, check-ups, and patient counseling to prevent illnesses, disease, or other health problems. This copay policy will begin on January 1, 2019, even if the Kentucky HEALTH program has not started.

The following documents have been produced by DMS:

For more information, please go online to the official DMS website.

 

Nominate someone for a 2019 Commitment to Compassion Award

Compassion is more than just being sympathetic. Compassion means acting on the desire to alleviate the suffering of another. Those in the health care field seem to have an extra sense of compassion for those who need help in overcoming challenges.

Compassionate LouisvilleThe Commitment to Compassion Award was created to honor some of the people every year who exemplify true compassion in care delivery. It all began three years ago, when Jill Bell, vice president and chief communications and marketing officer at Passport Health Plan, and Stephanie Barnett of ChooseWell Communities, along with members of the staff at Insider Louisville, came up with the idea of honoring health care professionals who show extraordinary compassion in their approach to their work and their life.

The awards are given out each year at the Commitment to Compassion luncheon. The fourth annual luncheon will be held at the Muhammad Ali Center in Downtown Louisville on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019.

Do you know someone who deserves recognition for what he or she does to improve the lives of those around them? Somebody who inspires and challenges you to become more compassionate yourself? Click here to nominate a compassionate honoree today. The deadline for award nominations is Friday, Dec. 21.

 

Symposium will help primary care practitioners learn more about detection and prevention of Chronic Kidney Disease

In an effort to help primary care practitioners (PCPs) and other healthcare professionals learn more about Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), the National Kidney Foundation, with the support of Passport Health Plan, is presenting “CKDinform: Early Detection and Prevention Symposium” from 7:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, October 20, at the Marriott Louisville East. ***UPDATE: This event is being rescheduled until early 2019 — stay tuned for more details, or email alana.miller@kidney.org.***

CKDinform is a collection of evidence-based resources provided in a diverse “toolbox” that will enable them to recognize CKD earlier and develop treatment protocols to slow progression.

Physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, and other clinicians who care for people with CKD are invited to sign up for a morning of learning and networking. As a bonus, all those in attendance can earn up to 3.0 CME/CEs for just $25. Breakfast is included.

Register at www.kidney.org/ckdinform-louisville or contact Alana Miller by sending an email to alana.miller@kidney.org or calling (502) 585-5433.

The National Kidney Foundation is the largest, most comprehensive and longstanding organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease.

 

Passport Advantage (HMO SNP) will expand into 12 more counties starting in January 2019

Passport Advantage (HMO SNP) is going to be expanding its service area to 12 additional counties, effective January 1, 2019.

PAD logoThe application was approved by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) to expand the Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MAPD) Dual Special Needs Plan (D-SNP) to 12 additional counties. Currently, Passport Advantage covers residents of Bullitt, Hardin, Jefferson, and Nelson counties who have both Medicaid and Medicare benefits. Starting January 1, 2019, Passport Advantage will be available to residents of the following counties:

  • Breckinridge
  • Bullitt
  • Carroll
  • Grayson
  • Hardin
  • Henry
  • Jefferson
  • Larue
  • Marion
  • Meade
  • Nelson
  • Oldham
  • Shelby
  • Spencer
  • Trimble
  • Washington

For more information, please go online to passportadvantage.com or call toll-free 1-844-859-6152.

Head injuries can take longer to heal, especially for young athletes

Injuries are, for the most part, an accepted consequence of participating in youth sports. Beginning as early as preschool, kids are encouraged to participate in sports as a good way to help them learn about socialization, competition, and fitness.

Insider Louisville LogoBroken bones almost always heal. So do sprains and bruises. But parents, coaches, and kids are learning too often that bumps on the head must be taken more seriously. Brain injuries, including concussions, can have long-lasting effects that make it difficult to concentrate, focus, and remember important details.

That was the case for soccer goalie Ruby Fitzer, who had to quit playing the game she loved after suffering her fourth concussion. But she, and her parents, knew they had to make that difficult decision because they realized that the cumulative effect of the concussions could eventually lead to long-term damage.

“I loved playing soccer and I miss it all the time,” she said in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville. “I’ve had too many head injuries, and the risks of playing outweigh the benefits.”

Eddie Reynolds, executive director of the Brain Injury Alliance of Kentucky (BIAK), said the brain must be allowed to heal after an injury. He said a concussion is like a short in the brain’s wiring, and it needs to rest both physically and cognitively to heal. That means no computer, TV, or phone activity while in recovery.

“If a young person receives a second concussion, it can cause catastrophic damage. Removal from play is important. You have to get over the mindset that you just have to suck it up and be tough. You’ve only got one brain, and it’s important to take care of it,” he said.

To hear more from Ruby and Eddie, please click here.

 

Southern Kentucky Reentry Council hosts “Reentry Expo” on October 10 in Bowling Green

The Southern Kentucky Reentry Council is hosting its first “Reentry Expo” on Wednesday, October 10, at the Warren County Library’s Bob Kirby Branch in Bowling Green.

The event, which is co-sponsored by Passport, will run from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. There will be an Expungement Informational Session that begins at noon, in which attendees will receive an official copy of their record and learn about the process of expungement. Please note that no attorneys will be available following the presentation for one-on-one consultations, but Legal Aid will have a table during the event to set up future appointments.

There will also be resources available on a number of subjects including substance use disorder, mental health, second-chance employers, community resources, job coaching, and more.

Free snacks and drinks will be provided while supplies last.

For more information, please go online to southernkyreentry.org or call 270-883-2299.

 

Dignity has a home at Louisville’s Hildegard House

The spirit of compassion permeates the air at Hildegard House, the Louisville home where 65 volunteers serve on a rotating schedule to care for those “individuals at the end of life who have no home or loved ones to care for them.”

Insider Louisville LogoKaren Cassidy, a palliative care nurse, is the executive director. She led the drive to establish Hildegard House, and the non-profit was able to purchase the former church property, which was home to Ursuline Sisters for decades, in 2016.

Before taking on the leadership role at Hildegard House, Cassidy said that she was witness to many sad stories of individuals who came to the end of life with nothing.

“Every day I would see people at the end of life who had no home or caregivers to care for them,” she said in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville. “It’s hard to see someone die by themselves.”

On Sept. 22, a fund-raising event, “An Evening with Hildegard” is planned from 5-8 p.m. at the Atria Hospitality Center at 300 E. Market St. Local TV personality Rachel Platt with emcee the event, with guest performances by the Louisville Ballet and performance artist Jeannde Ford. Tickets are available through Hildegard House.

For more information, please click here.

 

Passport implements new requirement for medically frail members

Effective July 1, 2018, Passport Health Plan has implemented a new requirement for medically frail members.

Some of our members may be considered medically frail, meaning that they are exempt from any cost-sharing and are automatically placed into Passport’s Care Management programs. A person may be determined as medically frail if they have a severe condition including, but not limited to:

  • Activities of Daily Living (physical, intellectual or developmental limitations such as with dressing, eating, etc)
  • Disabling mental disorder (including serious mental illness)
  • Chronic substance use disorder (SUD)
  • Chronic homelessness
  • Serious and complex medical conditions

Providers who think they have a patient who is a Passport member and might be classified as medically frail should first check the Passport Portal to determine if they have already been deemed medically frail via claims data or another provider attestation. If the member has not been deemed as medically frail, providers are asked to submit an attestation on the patient’s condition.

The attestation form is available online by clicking here. Providers can check the Medically Frail Condition Guide for more information.

Providers who have questions should call Passport Provider Services at 1-800-578-0775, or contact their Passport Provider Services Representative.

 

Psychologist uses his own life lessons – including a failed suicide attempt – to help others thinking about taking their own lives

After someone commits suicide, family members and friends are left to wonder why. They reconstruct recent events and interactions, trying to recall any signs that their loved one was contemplating taking their own life.

Insider Louisville Logo“The biggest feeling is guilt for not seeing it,” Dr. Josh Smith, a licensed clinical psychologist, says in a Passport-sponsored article on Insider Louisville. “Even when the individual does not show any discernible signs you feel like there is something that you missed.”

During National Suicide Awareness Month this month, the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) encourages everyone to share resources and stories in an effort to simply talk about the highly stigmatized topic.

In Kentucky, suicide is on the rise, with 776 deaths occurring in 2017. There were 584 deaths by suicide in Jefferson County between 2011 and 2015.

To help tackle this issue, the Louisville Health Advisory Board is holding free suicide prevention training at 85 locations around Jefferson County from Sept. 9 through 15 in association with National Suicide Prevention Week. The 90-minute “Question. Persuade. Refer.” (QPR) sessions are designed to teach people how to respond to someone in crisis and are taught much like CPR. The goal of the training is to educate people on how to talk with someone who might be at risk. To learn more and see a complete list of the times and locations, please go online to qprlou.com.

To hear more from Dr. Smith, including his very personal stories about suicide, please click here.

 

Louisville Health Advisory Board plans free suicide prevention trainings to help reduce deaths

One person dies by suicide in Kentucky about every 11 hours, making it the 11th leading cause of death overall, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Efforts to increase suicide prevention and awareness include many different things, but the Louisville Health Advisory Board (LHAB) is adding something new this year.

To try to bring suicides in the city down to zero, LHAB — of which Passport is a proud member — is offering suicide prevention training in more than 85 locations during National Suicide Prevention Week (Sept. 9-15) as part of its “Bold Moves Against Suicide Louisville” initiative.

“The concept is that any suicide that exists may be related to an opportunity to stop that suicide,” said Dr. Val Slayton, a member of the LHAB behavioral health committee. “And an important part of being able to stop suicide is by having individuals understand what to look for. And then how to intervene.”

The free 90-minute “Question. Persuade. Refer. (QPR)” training is designed to teach people how to respond to someone in crisis and is taught much like CPR. It is designed to teach people how to recognize the warning signs of suicide, how to offer hope and how to get help and save a life.

To see where the classes are being offered, please go online to qprlou.org. If you or someone you know is in crisis, the national suicide prevention hotline is 1-800-273-8255. The Crisis Text Line is also available 24/7 by texting HOME to 741741.