Is PrEP Appropriate for Urgent Care?

Is PrEP Appropriate for Urgent Care?

Urgent message: Ever since HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) was approved by the FDA in 2012, urgent care centers have been offering this service in increasing numbers as a way to increase revenue and serve new patient segments. However, some healthcare professionals question whether urgent care is an appropriate venue for dispensing such a powerful medication, as it can carry with it dangerous side effects and, if misused, serious health consequences. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc …

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Flu Shot Coverage and Effectiveness—a Historical Perspective

Patients who heed your advice to get a flu shot and take common-sense measures to avoid spreading germs—regular, effective handwashing; cleaning common-use surfaces; staying home when they’re sick—are less likely to get the flu. That’s a given. What’s less clear in the midst of any flu season is how many of them do so (and at what point), and how effective the vaccine is for those who do receive it. The Centers for Disease Control …

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What Happens if You Break a Commercial Lease?

Urgent message: Whether starting a new urgent care center and entering into a lease for the first time, or evaluating, moving, closing, or selling an existing urgent care center, understanding the conditions under which its permissible—and not permissible—to break a commercial lease can save you time, money, and legal headaches . Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care, LLC and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent …

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Becoming the Employer of Choice for the Emerging Urgent Care Workforce

Becoming the Employer of Choice for the Emerging Urgent Care Workforce

Urgent message: A tight labor market combined with stagnant real wage growth and shifting worker expectations has placed the onus on employers to rethink their approaches to attracting, engaging, and retaining talent. Thus, the challenge for talent-hungry industries such as healthcare is to fully reimagine their workplaces such that they become the “employer of choice” for the modern, millennial-dominated workforce. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc As a nation, the U.S. is well into what experts …

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If You Want Your Providers to Get a Flu Shot, Make It a Requirement

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has spelled out the best way to ensure providers who work in your urgent care center heed the advice they’re supposed to be giving patients (in short, Get a flu shot). It’s a simple one: Tell them they have to, and make it easy for them to. The CDC just released data for last year’s flu season on the influence of employer-imposed requirements to receive an influenza vaccination …

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Big Changes in Medicare Evaluation and Management Reimbursement

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has published the proposed changes for the Calendar Year (CY) 2019 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS).1 Probably the most controversial of these proposed changes is the Patients Over Paperwork initiative, which streamlines documentation requirements and reimbursement for Evaluation and Management (E/M) services in the office and outpatient setting, affecting Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes 99201 through 99215. CMS has announced that it plans to eliminate differential payments for …

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The Tax, Legal, and Business Implications of Providing a Company Vehicle, Vehicle Allowance, or Mileage Reimbursement

Urgent message: The nature of a multisite urgent care business entails operations and clinical leadership travelling among various sites, so a sensible, easily administered, and cost-effective policy for paying employee vehicle must be established to assure tax and legal compliance. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. Urgent message: The nature of a multisite urgent care business …

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How Urgent Care is the Antidote to Traditional Doctors’ Offices

How Urgent Care is the Antidote to Traditional Doctors’ Offices

Urgent message: Changing consumer expectations have led experts to question the future viability of “traditional” doctors’ offices, but urgent care provides a model for shifting from “caregiver-focused” to “patient-centric” care. Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc is Chief Executive Officer of Velocity Urgent Care and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. In the not-so-distant future of healthcare, the familiar query Is the doctor in? could very well be met with a …

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Urgent Care Visits Go Up (and Up, and Up) While Costs Remain Low vs the ED

The key question posed by the authors of an article published last month in JAMA Internal Medicine: How have patterns of care for low-acuity patients with acute conditions changed over time among a commercially insured population? The answer is, quite a lot—due largely (and much to the benefit of) urgent care. Working from 2008–2015 claims data supplied by Aetna, the researchers looked at utilization, inflation-adjusted price, and spending associated with approximately 20 million acute care …

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Small Errors Could Cost Big Bucks When Billing for I&D

Q: While reviewing charts where incision and drainage (I&D) procedures were being performed, I came across instances where Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code 10060, “Incision and drainage of abscess (eg, carbuncle, suppurative hidradenitis, cutaneous or subcutaneous abscess, cyst, furuncle, or paronychia); simple or single” was billed for treatment of an abscess on the finger. I believe this is an error, since this procedure involved an abscess of the finger pad and not just paronychia. Can …

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