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Rural Health
News by Topic: Pharmacy and prescription drugs

Dec 10, 2019 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is seeking comment on two information collections: 1) the Reconciliation of State Invoice and Prior Quarter Adjustment Statement which is used by manufacturers to respond to the state's rebate invoice each quarter; and 2) Medicaid Drug Rebate State Reporting Program Forms, which states use to report to drug manufacturers on their use of covered outpatients drugs for reimbursement purposes. Comments are due by February 10, 2020.
Source: Federal Register
Dec 3, 2019 - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announces the launch of the Ready, Set, PrEP program to make pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), an HIV prevention medication, free to those without prescription insurance. Includes information on the medication and the Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America initiative.
Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Dec 2, 2019 - Identifies counties in South New Jersey as having a shortage of physicians and nurses as well as low per-capita income and poor health outcomes. Discusses possible solutions to the shortage, such as allowing nurses to have more authority and decreasing the cost of medical school.
Source: NJ Spotlight
Nov 25, 2019 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announces an interim final rule, with comment period, that further delays the inclusion of U.S. Territories in the definition of "States" and "United States" that was originally announced in the Medicaid Covered Outpatient Drug final rule on February 1, 2016. The delay is in effect through April 1, 2022. Comments on this announcement are due by January 24, 2020.
Source: Federal Register
Nov 21, 2019 - Notice from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services correcting errors found in the November 18, 2019 Federal Register Notice for Model Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Individual Enrollment Request Form. These corrections do not change the comment due date of January 17, 2020.
Source: Federal Register
Nov 15, 2019 - Notice of final rule and interim final rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to be published in the Federal Register on November 15, 2019. The final rule includes changes to the Physician Fee Schedule and Medicare Part B payment policies; updates to quality reporting requirements for the Medicare Shared Savings Program; Medicaid Promoting Interoperability Program requirements for eligible professionals; the establishment of an ambulance data collection system; updates to the Quality Payment Program; Medicare enrollment of Opioid Treatment Programs and enhancements to provider enrollment regulations concerning improper prescribing and patient harm; and amendments to Physician Self-Referral Law advisory opinion regulations. The interim final rule with comment period establishes coding and payment for evaluation and management, observation, and the provision of self-administered Esketamine to facilitate beneficiary access to care for treatment-resistant depression as efficiently as possible. Comments on the interim final rule are due by December 31, 2019. No comments will be accepted on the final rule. Both rules are effective January 1, 2020.
Source: Federal Register
Nov 13, 2019 - Features two rural programs who have implemented successful opioid treatment programs in their communities and identifies the similarities in their practices. These programs utilized statewide interventions and funding, leveraged telehealth, and created a community health model to combat the opioid misuse.
Source: Health Payer Intelligence
Nov 1, 2019 - Fact sheet from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) detailing a final rule that includes updates to payment policies and rates, as well as quality provisions for services under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS). Discusses payment for services such as telehealth, care management, opioid treatment programs, therapy, and more.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Oct 29, 2019 - Discusses a national study that found 1 in 8 pharmacies closed between 2009-2015, with independent pharmacies in rural and low-income areas hit the hardest. As pharmacy deserts increase, residents rely on policies to protect rural pharmacies and telepharmacy to help bridge the gap.
Source: KUNC