Registration is now open for the 2017 Annual Meeting!
April 27, 2017 | view this message as a web page

2017 NC/SC Annual Meeting InfoNCSOHNS Online

In this edition:

Survey: Perioperative Opioid Use In Pediatric Patients

To: NC & SC Otolaryngologists

We need your opinion! Opioid prescribing has become a hot topic, and the use of narcotics in children during the perioperative and postoperative periods is drawing additional scrutiny.

Please share your practice patterns, as we gather data from otolaryngologists in both North Carolina and South Carolina. This survey has the potential to be one of the largest ever recorded for this topic.

Please participate and let your voice be heard!

Your responses will be kept anonymous.

Results will be reviewed and discussed at the 2017 SC/NC SOHNS Annual Assembly, August 3-6, 2017 at the Marriott Resort at Grande Dunes, Myrtle Beach, SC.


Brian Downs, MD
President, NCSOHNS

Christina Gwozdz, MD
President, SCSOHNS

NCSOHNS Participates in the Academy’s Inaugural “State Society Roundtable”

On March 10, 2017, the AAOHNS conducted its first State Society Roundtable, convening representatives from most of state ENT societies. The purpose of the event was to lay the foundation for state societies to interact with the Academy and each other to promote growth in membership and activities. Representing the NCSOHNS was Alan Skipper, Executive Director.

Issues reviewed included:

Membership –size, recruitment, retention, dues
Meetings –types, size, format, locations
Advocacy –political, legislative, regulatory
Communications –newsletters, alerts
Resident participation –membership, meeting attendance
Members’ needs

The Society is represented on the Academy’s Board of Governors by Merritt Seshul, MD (Hickory), Eileen Raynor, MD (Durham) and Brian Downs, MD (Winston-Salem).

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New Sleep Management Program to Begin June 1, 2017
Source: BCBSNC

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) will implement a new specialty benefit management program for sleep testing and therapy services, which is designed to improve convenience, compliance and enhance health care affordability for our under age-65 members, enrolled in insured and administered products. The program becomes effective June 1, 2017, and will help physicians and clinicians to:

  • improve site-specific appropriateness for sleep disorder testing and therapy services
  • better manage cost-effective equipment and services
  • monitor member compliance with prescribed sleep therapies

AIM Specialty Health® (AIM) will administer the program.

For additional details, visit the BCBSNC website.

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NCMJ Special Edition on Hearing and Vision Loss

The March-April 2017 edition of the North Carolina Medical Journal (NCMJ) takes a deep dive into vision and hearing loss with 13 articles which together present the challenges as well as resources. The articles cover topics such as screening, early intervention, technology, prevention and accommodations. Access the NCMJ current issue online.

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Federal Legislation Would Expand Access to Hearing Aids, Preserve Patient Safety

AAO-HNS Supports Greater Access to Hearing Aids with Patient Safety Preserved

The Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid Act of 2017 (H.R. 1652/S. 670) was recently introduced by U.S. Representatives Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Joseph Kennedy III (D-MA) and U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Charles Grassley (R-IA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH). The AAO-HNS supports access to over-the-counter (OTC) hearing aids for adults with mild-to-moderate hearing loss when paired with appropriate patient safety and consumer protections.

To ensure patient safety is preserved, the Academy stands by its recommendation regarding the benefits of a medical evaluation by a physician, followed by a standardized hearing test (via a hearing health professional or appropriate online/technological source), before an individual purchases any type of basic hearing aid or other FDA-regulated assistive hearing device.

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ICYMI: This Avoided Administrative Nightmare in Medicaid Brought to You by the NCMS
Source: NC Medical Society

So far, 2017 has been a successful year for our Medicaid advocacy work. Last month, the Division of Medical Assistance (DMA) abandoned its plan to activate “rendering provider service location edits” in NCTracks, another burdensome administrative requirement affecting all physicians, PAs, and individual providers.

Teaming with the NC Medical Group Management Association (NCMGMA), the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) argued that complying with the edits would require countless hours of administrative work for medical practices statewide, risked another major disruption to the flow of claims and payments, and most importantly, offered absolutely no benefit to the Medicaid program, providers, or patients.

After several months of persistent work by NCMS and NCMGMA, DMA officials eventually agreed to scrap the edits. “This was an incredibly important win to keep Medicaid practices running smoothly. We are pleased and grateful that DMA listened to reason and agreed to drop this requirement,” said Leah Paraschiv, Chair of NCMGMA’s Medicaid Committee.

This comes quickly on the heels of the victorious effort to block the 1 percent rate cut, and serves as another example of how the NCMS works behind the scenes to protect your practice in Medicaid. We’ve got your back!

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2017 Annual NCTracks Regional Seminars
Source: NCTracks

Are you a new provider or an existing provider with new staff who use NCTracks? Have you wanted to attend NCTracks training, but prefer taking it in person and can’t travel much? Would you like to meet our Regional Provider Relations Representatives?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, we have good news. NCTracks will conduct four Regional NCTracks Seminars in the coming months. The purpose of these Regional NCTracks Seminars is to help educate new providers, educate new billing staff of existing providers, and serve as a refresher for current and experienced provider staff. Regional seminars allow for participation by more providers, particularly those who cannot travel to attend single Instructor-Led Training classes. They will also allow providers an opportunity to meet and become familiar with their Regional Provider Relations Representatives. It is a learning opportunity and a chance to network.

Each of the seminars runs from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and they are being offered on different dates and locations across the state. Providers can register for the seminar most convenient for them:

  • Thursday, May 18 - 359 Ferrell Lane Halifax, NC
  • Tuesday, June 6 - 1450 Fairchild Rd Winston-Salem, NC

From 9:00 a.m. to Noon, the seminars will give providers a high level overview of NCTracks, Claim Submission, Provider Enrollment, Credentialing, Re-Verification, Provider Record Maintenance, and recent system updates. Registration is for all sessions, but participants can review the agenda and choose to attend all or as many topics as they wish. Printed materials will not be available, but providers can download and/or print their own Participant User Guides (PUGs) from the ILT Guides folder in SkillPort prior to the seminar.

From 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., there will be a Provider Help Center at each location. NCTracks staff from Claims, Provider Enrollment, and Provider Relations will be available on site to assist registered NC providers with questions or concerns regarding NCTracks. For providers to get the most out of these sessions, please bring specific examples of issues. Registration is required, separate from the morning seminar, for a 30 minute block of time, limited to a total of 30 providers. After all registered Help Center participants have been assisted, and if time permits, the NCTracks staff will see other session participants on a first come, first served basis.

Providers can register for the NCTracks Regional Seminars and the Provider Help Centers in SkillPort, the NCTracks Learning Management System. Logon to the secure NCTracks Provider Portal and click Provider Training to access SkillPort. Open the folder labeled Provider Computer-Based Training (CBT) and Instructor Led Training (ILT). The sessions for the 2017 Annual Regional Seminar and the Provider Help Center can be found in the sub-folder labeled ILTs: On-site. Refer to the Provider Training page of the public Provider Portal for specific instructions on how to use SkillPort. The Provider Training page also includes a quick reference regarding Java, which is required for the use of SkillPort.

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Mark Your Calendar for the M3 Conference, Sept. 14-16

Be sure your calendar is marked for Sept. 14-16 to attend the second M3 – Merging Medicine and Management – Conference, which will be held this year at the Marriott Crabtree Valley in Raleigh. The preliminary schedule is up on the website, and we’re working on exciting and relevant content to inspire you and your staff. Registration will open in late May, so watch the NCMS website for details!

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Registration is open!
NC & SC Societies of Otolaryngology
Annual Meeting

August 3-6, 2017
Marriott Resort at Grande Dunes, Myrtle Beach
Program, Registration & Hotel Info.

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