June 10, 2020

ISASS Provides Extensive Additional Comments to Anthem on Sacroiliac Joint Fusion Coverage Policy During Call and Response Letter

On May 26, 2020, ISASS sent a comment letter to Anthem regarding their Sacroiliac Joint Fusion Coverage Policy, which is used in many states/regions by Anthem for fee schedule and coverage policies. The ISASS letter asked that Anthem revise their coverage policy to consider inclusion of coverage of minimally invasive sacroiliac joint fusion, which would be consistent with ISASS recommendations for appropriate criteria for sacroiliac joint fusion procedures and criteria on nonsurgical options. The May 26 letter was sent as a follow-up to a call on May 18, 2020, with ISASS Coding and Reimbursement Task Force Chair, Morgan Lorio, MD, and David Polly, MD, and the Anthem Coverage Policy team, led by John Whitney, MD. Read the ISASS 5-26-20 Anthem […]
May 21, 2020

COVID 19: Testing in Orthopedics & Spine Clinical Settings: The Unknown Category

Testing in Orthopedics & Spine Clinical Settings: The Unknown Category As COVID-19 infection rates begin to slow, elective surgery is ramping up and facilities are screening patients for COVID-19. However, it is important to understand COVID-19 testing abilities and limitations in this new reality. Simply utilizing a questionnaire and temperature check are inadequate to screen patients, though due to the significant testing limitations, it tends to serve as the absolute minimum acceptable standard. Many different tests are currently performed, but each should be interpreted with care and caution in order to provide the safest possible environment for patients and staff. Preoperative COVID-19 Screening Tests A recent report from China described 34 cases of patients who were unknown to be positive […]
May 14, 2020

How My Country Confronted COVID-19

How My Country Confronted COVID-19 On Tuesday, April 28, 2020, health care workers in Seoul Medical Center commemorated the 100th day since the first appearance of a COVID-19 patient in South Korea. As of May 6, 2020, the nation’s total number of cases stands at 10,806, with six new imported infections and no new local ones, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC). The daily number of confirmed new infections had peaked on February 29 at 909. Also according to the KCDC, as of May 6, the death toll has reached 255, and the fatality rate reached 2.34%. A total of 9,333 people who were confirmed to have had COVID-19 have recovered so far, up 50 […]
May 1, 2020

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Provides an Update on the Provider Emergency Relief Fund

On April 24, 2020, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced additional support to healthcare providers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic through the bipartisan CARES Act that provides $100 billion in relief funds to hospitals and other healthcare providers impacted by the coronavirus response. This funding will be used to support healthcare-related expenses or lost revenue attributable to COVID-19 and to ensure uninsured Americans can get treatment for COVID-19. In allocating the funds, the Administration is working, among other things, to address both the economic harm across the entire healthcare system due to the stoppage of elective procedures, as well as the economic impact on providers incurring additional expenses caring for COVID-19 patients, and to do so as transparently […]