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MR Update #04-33: Regulation Review, Restraints Bulletin, HCSIS Update, and CMS Auditors
November 10, 2004

Regulation Review
The Office of Mental Retardation (OMR) has placed all regulation review efforts on hold due to staff resource constraints. When staff becomes available, the department will focus on revisions to one chapter of regulations at a time.

MR Bulletin: Elimination of Restraints
OMR has released the draft bulletin on Positive Practices: Elimination of Restraints. Comments are due to Mel Knowlton at mknowlton@state.pa.us by January 10, 2005. This bulletin addresses provider development of alternative strategies to restraint within positive practice activities. Within six months of the final bulletin release, all providers are expected to develop procedures that outline steps to eliminate any plans with restraint components. Seclusion, chemical, and mechanical restraints will be prohibited. Physical restraints will be used only on an emergency basis.

For a copy of the bulletin contact either Linda Drummond or Lynsdey Wanich at PCPA.

HCSIS Update
HCSIS Release 4.1.0 will go live on December 4. Highlights include:
• Modification of financial management reports,
• IM4Q survey status report available for state centers,
• Case comments searches can be done for up to 31 days,
• As of October 25 2,100,711 case comments have been entered, and
• Counties can monitor progress in approving ISPs by using the data warehouse.

CMS Auditors
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has 100 new auditors to monitor states’ Medicaid budget processes and funding requests. The auditors will work with states to resolve funding issues before payments are made and to avoid the service disruptions that retrospective disallowments can cause. States budget-making processes will be monitored and quarterly funding requests will be examined before CMS pays states matching funds.

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