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Chiropractic Economics Letter from the Editor: The ‘vaccine passport;’ documentation tune-ups

Now world experts are preparing for a “vaccine passport” that could not only apply to travel to other countries...

EVEN THOUGH YOUR DOCUMENTATION IS “FINE,” it could be time for a self-audit or “white hat” audit from an outside agency.

Why?

The Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General (OIG) reports that as many as 94% of chiropractic records are missing, or inadequately reflect some key elements, according to Kathy “KMC” Weidner, who provides our feature in issue #4 with tips on keeping your practice out of the auditor’s web.

Billing changes for 2021, top reimbursement strategies, best documentation procedures, new stimulus rules and the impacts for DCs, and the “right way” for MD referrals are just some of the articles in our Documentation Issue to provide you with the resources to shore-up your practice against audits while furthering your financials.

As noted above, if you think your documentation is squeaky clean, then you’re among only 6% of DCs in the U.S.

The coming of the ’vaccine passport’

Vaccinations have always been a touchy subject in the chiropractic community (see our recent vax or anti-vax PointCounterpoint at facebook.com/groups/344772412902399).

Now world experts are preparing for a “vaccine passport” that could not only apply to travel to other countries, but depending on acceptance of vaccines in the U.S., possibly between state travel.

The New York Times in February reported that countries such as Denmark and international airlines already have digital passports in the works, developed by the International Air Transport Association. IBM is also developing a digital passport to present proof of vaccination “to gain access to a public location, such as a sports stadium, airplane, university or workplace.”

Regardless of need, the vaccine passport has a number of hurdles, and may not debut before 2022 or beyond.

“The global passport system took 50 years to develop,” said Drummond Reed, chief trust officer for Evernym. “Now, in a very short period of time, we need to produce a digital credential that can be as universally recognized as a passport and it needs an even greater level of privacy because it’s going to be digital.”

State chiropractic wins

The year 2021 is young but chiropractic has already experienced a number of “wins” in regard to the scope of patient care and assisting during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Texas a 10-year court battle ended when the Texas Supreme Court ruled that nerve and related testing as it pertains to the musculoskeletal system is within the lawful scope of practice for Texas chiropractors.

“This decision, which recognizes the common sense and long-standing inclusion of associated nerves in chiropractic diagnosis and treatment, preserves and strengthens the essence of chiropractic,” wrote Mark R. Bronson, DC, FIANM, board president for the Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners.

Also in January, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis signed an executive order allowing chiropractors and select other health care professionals to give COVID-19 vaccines to people “in hospital-like settings” to speed-up the distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations in the state.

“This executive order … [will] ensure that inpatient health care facilities have sufficient resources and personnel to treat patients suffering from COVID-19 and to ensure that inpatient facilities and outpatient settings have sufficient resources to administer COVID-19 vaccinations,” Polis wrote.

Last year saw chiropractic deemed an “essential service,” and 2021 thus far is shaping up along the same lines in the ever-changing brave new world of health care.

To your practice’s success,

Richard Vach
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

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