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Call the Mortuary and the Medical Examiner?

Posted April 11, 2018

What does the Medical Examiner’s office need to know when patients die? Come to UHPCO’s education session Tuesday, April 17 at noon and find out. And have lunch on us while you learn.

It turns out that some hospice deaths that should be reported to the Medical Examiner are not. And that messes up Utah’s death statistics.

UHPCO will host representatives from the Medical Examiner’s office to set us straight right at noon Tuesday, right after the UHPCO general board meeting (that starts at 11 A.M.).

We are excited to welcome both of our presenters. Erik D. Christensen is the Chief Medical Examiner for the state of Utah. A graduate of BYU and the University of Virginia School of Medicine, he was an army doctor and surgeon, a forensic pathologist, and is board certified in Anatomic, Physical, and Forensic Pathology.

Gerrianne Avery was hired as a death investigator with the Utah State Medical Examiner’s office in 2013. She obtained Diplomat status with the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators in 2014 and is currently also an associate member of the General Section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

Attend in person or via conference call:

General Board Meeting

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 11 A.M. – noon

UHPCO Education 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 Noon – 1 p.m.

HealthInsight 2nd floor conference room
Mountain View Corporate Center

756 E Winchester St, Murray UT, 84107
Conference Call Phone # 1-888-290-0568
Passcode 7036251

Other news:

CMS is asking for volunteers to participate in the HHS HIPAA Administrative Simplification Optimization pilot. According to their official announcement:

  • Volunteers will be able to test their electronic transactions for compliance with standard formats, operating rules, and code sets.
  • To volunteer, please email HIPAAcomplaint@cms.hhs.gov by April 20, 2018.
  • Visit the Events and Latest News page of to find out more.

NAHC’s recently released bulletin has a round-up of industry-specific news. Here’s an excerpt from their email:

  • Hospice – The Senate HELP Committee has released a “Discussion Draft” of a collection of legislative measures designed to combat the opioid addiction epidemic. Included is a proposal intended to allow for disposal of opioids by hospice providers.
  • Low Volume Appeal Extension – CMS has extended the deadline to submit an expression of interest by Friday June 8. This applies to providers with both even and odd NPI numbers.
  • Drug Take Back Day – The DEA has announced Saturday April 28thas a National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Providers are encouraged to notify patients and family members of this initiative.

Here are some other useful news items, released by NAHC:

  1. Physicians, skilled health home care agencies communicate poorly
  2. NQF Advises CMS Align Quality Measures, Cut Administrative Burden
  3. Home Care Providers Still Struggle with CMS’ Implementations of Conditions of Participation (CoP)