From HHSC: While every effort has been made to offer an accurate and current listing of meeting agendas and events on this calendar, the information has been compiled from a variety of sources and is subject to change without notice to the user.
November 16, 2020
- This meeting will be webcast: Policy Council for Children and Families (PCCF) Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Intellectual and Developmental Disability System Redesign Advisory Committee (IDD SRAC) Agenda
November 17, 2020
- Texas Council on Consumer Direction Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement Subcommittee (TCCD QAPI) Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Perinatal Advisory Council (PAC) Agenda
- Texas Council on Consumer Direction Training and Outreach Subcommittee Agenda
- Texas Council on Consumer Direction Processes & Expansion Subcommittee (TCCD PE) Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Notice of Public Hearing on Proposed Amendment to §355.8201, relating to Waiver Payments to Hospitals for Uncompensated Care.
November 18, 2020
- This meeting will be webcast: State Preventive Health Advisory Committee (SPH) Fiscal Year 2021- Meeting #1 Agenda
- State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee Administrative Simplification Subcommittee Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Task Force of Border Health Officials (TFBHO) Agenda
- State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee Network Adequacy Subcommittee (SMMCAC NA) Agenda
- State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee Service and Care Coordination Subcommittee (SMMCAC SCC) Agenda
November 19, 2020
- State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee Complaints, Appeals, and Fair Hearings Subcommittee Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Health and Human Services Commission Executive Council (HHSC EC) Agenda
- State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee Clinical Oversight and Benefits Subcommittee (SMMCAC COB) Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee (SMMCAC) Agenda
November 20, 2020
- This meeting will be webcast: Governor’s EMS and Trauma Advisory Council (GETAC) Agenda
- This meeting will be webcast: Sickle Cell Task Force (SCTF) Agenda
November 30, 2020
- This meeting will be webcast: Proposed Payment Rates for Medicaid Community Hospice and Home and Community-Based Services – Adult Mental Health
December 11, 2020
- This meeting will be webcast: Medical Advisory Board Physician Meeting Agenda
Formal Comments via the Texas Register
To let the public know about a rulemaking action – such as new, amended or repealed rules – HHS publishes a notice in the Texas Register, a publication of the Texas Secretary of State. Interested parties then can review and comment on the proposed rule. The Secretary of State publishes a new issue of the Texas Register each Friday.
The Administrative Procedure Act (Texas Government Code, Chapter 2001) requires the notice published in the Texas Register to include a brief explanation of the proposed rule and a request for comments from any interested person. The notice also includes instructions for submitting comments regarding the rule to the agency, including the date by which comments must be submitted. Agencies must give interested persons “a reasonable opportunity” to submit comments. The public comment period begins on the day after the notice of a proposed rule is published in the Texas Register and lasts for a minimum of 30 calendar days.
Below is a list of proposed rules that have been published in the Texas Register. The proposed rules that are published in the Texas Register are open for public comment until the end of the comment period.
Draft Rules Informal Comments
Informal opportunities to comment occur before a rule is published in the Texas Register. HHS staff may solicit informal public and stakeholder input by:
- inviting stakeholders to submit comments on potential rule changes during rule development.
- sharing a draft rule with stakeholders for review.
- using existing HHS advisory committees to comment on rules.
The following are draft rules on which HHS is accepting informal public or stakeholder input. All rules are posted in MS Word format unless otherwise noted.
|Title||Project No.||Contact||Comment Start Date||Comment End Date|
|Title 1, Chapter 351, Section 351.805, State Medicaid Managed Care Advisory Committee||#20R108||HHS Medicaid/CHIP Services||11/5/20||11/19/20|
Reminder: CMS Proposes to Allow APM Entities to Submit Applications for the Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances Exception; Applications are Due December 31. In the 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed to allow APM Entities to submit an application to reweight Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) performance categories as a result of extreme and uncontrollable circumstances. We intend to allow APM Entities to submit applications now, but CMS will not be able to make final determinations on applications until and unless the policy proposal is finalized.
If the policy is finalized and an APM Entity’s application is approved, that APM Entity would receive a final score equal to the performance threshold for the 2020 MIPS performance year, and the MIPS eligible clinicians in the APM Entity group would receive a neutral payment adjustment in 2022.
Who is Eligible to Submit an Application?
If the policy is finalized, then APM Entities affected by extreme and uncontrollable circumstances in the following models would be able to submit an application:
- Medicare Shared Saving Program
- Next Generation ACO Model
- Vermont Medicare ACO Model
- Comprehensive Primary Care Plus (CPC+)
- Comprehensive ESRD Care (CEC)
- Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI)
- Oncology Care Model (OCM)
- Maryland Primary Care Program
- Independence at Home Demonstration
What are the Application Requirements?
Unlike those who choose to apply as individual clinicians, groups, or virtual groups, APM Entities must apply to reweight all MIPS performance categories to 0%. Additionally, 75% of the MIPS eligible clinicians in the APM Entity must qualify for reweighting in the MIPS Promoting Interoperability performance category. They may qualify automatically or through a MIPS Promoting Interoperability Hardship Exception Application.
CMS does not require APM Entities to submit documentation with their applications. However, APM Entities should retain documentation of the circumstances supporting their application for their own records in the event they are selected by CMS for data validation or an audit.
When are Applications Due?
Applications are due to CMS by Thursday, December 31, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. ET.
How do I Apply?
New for 2020: You must have a HCQIS Access Roles and Profile (HARP) account to complete and submit an exception application. For more information on HARP accounts, please refer to the Register for a HARP Account document in the QPP Access User Guide.
Once you register for a HARP account, sign in to qpp.cms.gov, select ‘Exceptions Applications’ on the left-hand navigation, select ‘Add New Exception,’ and select ‘Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances Exception.’
How do I Know if I’m Approved?
If you submit an application and this policy is finalized to allow APM Entities to apply, then you will be notified by email if your request was approved or denied. If approved, this will also be added to your eligibility profile on the QPP Participation Status Tool, but it may not appear in the tool until the submission window is open in 2021.
Will Submitting Data Void the Exception?
Data submitted for an APM Entity will not override performance category reweighting from an approved application. This differs from the policy for individual, group, and virtual group applications.
Will an Approved Application Affect Model-Specific Reporting Requirements?
If the policy is finalized and an APM Entity’s application is approved, the approval would only affect MIPS reporting, and that APM Entity would still be required to meet its model-specific reporting requirements.
For More Information
- Visit the Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances Exception QPP webpage for more information and links to each application.
- Check out the Exceptions Application Fact Sheet to learn more about this exception.
Contact the Quality Payment Program at 1-866-288-8292 or by e-mail at: QPP@cms.hhs.gov. To receive assistance more quickly, please consider calling during non-peak hours—before 10:00 a.m. and after 2:00 p.m. ET.
- Customers who are hearing impaired can dial 711 to be connected to a TRS Communications Assistant.
Envision color: Activity patterns in the brain are specific to the color you see. Researchers at the National Eye Institute (NEI) have decoded brain maps of human color perception. The findings, published today in Current Biology, open a window into how color processing is organized in the brain, and how the brain recognizes and groups colors in the environment. The study may have implications for the development of machine-brain interfaces for visual prosthetics. NEI is part of the National Institutes of Health.
The brain uses light signals detected by the retina’s cone photoreceptors as the building blocks for color perception. Three types of cone photoreceptors detect light over a range of wavelengths. The brain mixes and categorizes these signals to perceive color in a process that is not well understood.
To examine this process, Isabelle Rosenthal, Katherine Hermann, and Shridhar Singh, post-baccalaureate fellows in Conway’s lab and co-first authors on the study, used magnetoencephalography or “MEG,” a 50-year-old technology that noninvasively records the tiny magnetic fields that accompany brain activity. The technique provides a direct measurement of brain cell activity using an array of sensors around the head. It reveals the millisecond-by-millisecond changes that happen in the brain to enable vision. The researchers recorded patterns of activity as volunteers viewed specially designed color images and reported the colors they saw.
The researchers worked with pink, blue, green, and orange hues so that they could activate the different classes of photoreceptors in similar ways. These colors were presented at two luminance levels – light and dark. The researchers used a spiral stimulus shape, which produces a strong brain response.
The researchers found that study participants had unique patterns of brain activity for each color. With enough data, the researchers could predict from MEG recordings what color a volunteer was looking at – essentially decoding the brain map of color processing, or “mind-reading.”
Read the full release.
West Nile Virus – Nov. 10, 2020. DSHS has confirmed 54 cases and 10 deaths of West Nile illness in Texas this year.
People can be infected by West Nile virus through the bite of an infected mosquito. DSHS encourages everyone to protect themselves from bites by wearing long sleeves and pants, applying insect repellent and removing standing water.
Last year, Texas reported 32 cases of West Nile illness that resulted in four deaths.
Case counts will be updated each Tuesday through mosquito season.
|County||West Nile Fever||West Nile Neuroinvasive Disease||Total|