Hello Tuesday! Here’s your NCMS Morning Rounds.

Jan. 12, 2021

NC Council on Health Care Coverage Considers Guiding Principles

Last Friday, Jan. 8, the Governor’s Council on Health Care Coverage held its third meeting to discuss health care financing options and the draft guiding principles around expanding access to health care coverage for North Carolinians.

NCMS Board member Merritt Seshul, MD, and NCMS Executive Vice President and CEO Chip Baggett, JD, are the NCMS’ representatives to the Council, which is a bipartisan group that includes 36 representatives from state health care organizations, business, nonprofits and government and reflects a variety of political perspectives. Mark McClellan, MD, PhD, of the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy at Duke University is convening the council. Here is the list of Council participants.

After reviewing financing options previously outlined, the council members broke into small groups to discuss the draft guiding principles for the expanding access to care going forward. Review the slide presentation here, paying special attention to slide 31, which outlines the financing options, and slides 35-37, which include the draft guiding principles.

The council’s last meeting will be held on Jan. 22, when the guiding principles will be finalized. You can access the materials from previous meetings and watch recordings of or livestream the proceedings at this link.

Updated NC Medicaid Provider Playbook Available

As North Carolina moves closer to implementing Medicaid managed care, the state has published additional information in its NC Medicaid Provider Playbook to help you make the transition. The move to managed care is set to ‘go live’ July 1.

One fast approaching date to keep in mind is Feb. 1, which is the deadline for you to contract with the pre-paid health plans (PHPs) if you want to be included in the open enrollment phase of the transition.

More information on contracting and the timeline are included in these updated parts of the playbook:
Introduction to Medicaid Transformation: Part 1 – Overview
Introduction to Medicaid Transformation: Part 2 – Enrollment and Timelines
Contracting with Health Plans
Medicaid and NC Health Choice Provider and Health Plan Lookup Tool

Additional information on North Carolina’s transition to Medicaid managed care is available NC Division of Health Benefits website.

Also, the next in the series of webinars for Medicaid primary care staff and clinicians will be held this Thursday, Jan. 14 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and will focus on the Advanced Medical Home Tier Support Tool. The session will provide information on the Advanced Medical Home model and how to function at the highest AMH Tier possible when Medicaid Managed Care goes live. Register now.

New Resources to Answer Your – and Patients’ — COVID-19 Vaccine Questions

A diverse coalition of leading health care organizations and medical institutions have come together with the Ad Council to create new video resources to answer your questions about COVID-19 vaccination in hopes of allaying any fears your patients may have. The collection of videos, with an introduction from the National Institute of Health’s Anthony Fauci, MD, and other experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Geared to the medical community, the aim of the videos are to increase understanding and confidence about the efficacy and safety of the new vaccines. Topics addressed include safety, availability, cost, side effects, vaccine administration, answering patients’ questions and more.

Watch the brief videos here.

“I’m urging health care professionals to please get vaccinated,” Dr. Fauci says in the video.  “It’s critical to protect yourselves and your family—but it’s equally important as health care providers to show confidence in the vaccines so that other people will follow suit and get vaccinated. Together, we can help a substantial portion of the population decide to get vaccinated and ultimately end the pandemic as we know it in this country.”

Learn more about this effort here.

To aide in our advocacy efforts on your behalf about the vaccination process here in North Carolina, we ask that you please share your experience and any concerns or challenges you and/or your patients may be encountering in this quick survey. TAKE OUR SURVEY here. Thank you for your input!

In the News

For People with Type 1 Diabetes, CDC Guidelines for COVID-19 Vaccine Priority Are Puzzling, STAT, 1-11-21

Learning Opportunity

For specific questions you may have around COVID-19 vaccine safety, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and front line and clinicians will hold a “Fireside Chat” on Wednesday, Jan. 13 at 4 p.m.
This chat will address myths surrounding vaccine danger with the following panelists:
• Dr. Lee Fleisher, CMS Chief Medical Officer and Director, Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CMS)
• Dr. Amanda Cohn, Chief Medical Officer (Acting), Office of Vaccine Policy, Preparedness, and Global Health, Office of the Director (CDC)
• Roberta Jaramillo, Environmental Services District Manager, HealthCare Services Group

Register in advance for this call here. If you would like to submit questions for the panel to discuss please send them in advance to [email protected] . There will not be a Q&A session during the call.

Also, DON’T FORGET to join the National Academy of Medicine’s Leadership Consortium for a Jan. 13 from 1 to 4 pm to explore progress in achieving an inclusive culture of equitable engagement in health, strategies for achieving internal organizational equity and how to monitor national progress toward a culture of inclusion and equity in the health system. Learn more and register here.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!