Data Analytics and the Fight Against Opioid Abuse

The opioid epidemic in this country has gained a lot of attention in recent months. Its deadly effects are making their way into almost every news cycle across the country. A recent report by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) contains some very staggering statistics, and an on-going pattern in the rise of American deaths related to prescription opioids. The report cites over 183,000 deaths attributable to prescription opioid overdoses since 1999. The number of which has quadrupled in that 16-year timeframe. [More]

Stability and Child Protection Leadership

Every organization, regardless of focus or sector, needs good, solid leadership to thrive. Why? Leadership not only provides the organization’s vision and guidance so that the executive management team can implement the direction of the organization, but also serves as the role model and principal image of the work of the organization. Two of the most important elements of effective leadership are continuity and stability. Because change is an inevitable part of every organization, leadership that prepares for, addresses, and adapts to change will be more successful with organizational transformation. [More]

Meet PCG’s first official intern class!

This summer, our Boston office welcomed new interns as our first official PCG intern class. They are all working in practice areas from Health to corporate teams. In addition to their practice specific work, interns are also participating in various workshops to best prepare them for the professional world after college. Read their bios below! [More]

Support for the New CASE Specification Announced

Boston, MA, June 17 - Public Consulting Group, Inc. (PCG), in collaboration with HMH, D2L, ACT, SchoolCity, Capella University, Trinity Education Group (TEG), SAFARI Montage, Instructure, Elumen, Learning Objects, IBM, Pearson, the Georgia Department of Education, Houston Independent School District, the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, and the Texas Education Agency, are pleased to support the expected approval of a new technical specification by IMS Global Learning Consortium (IMS Global) called the Competency and Academic Standards Exchange (CASE). [More]

National Academy of Medicine outlines strategies for high-need patients

On July 6, 2017, the National Academy of Medicine released a valuable report entitled, “Effective Care for High-Need Patients: Opportunities for Improving Outcomes, Value, and Health.” The report describes key characteristics of high-need patient populations, tools that can be adopted to identify evidence-based models of care for them, and strategies to promote successful implementation of such models in collaboration with a broad range of stakeholders at the federal, state, and community level. It stresses the importance of behavioral health issues, social determinants of health, and community-based supports for high-need patients who often struggle at home with functional limitations associated with aging, disabilities, and a wide range of long-term diseases examined in the report. [More]

Update on the Senate’s efforts to Repeal parts of the ACA

After releasing the Better Care Reconciliation Act at the end of last week, leadership in the U.S. Senate announced this week that it will not be voting on the bill before the July 4th Congressional recess as planned. Instead efforts are underway to overhaul the bill, with a vote is expected sometime after the recess. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that he intends to submit a new version of the bill to be scored by the Congressional Budget Office today. [More]

House Ways and Means introduces legislation supporting Welfare to Work

On June 8, 2017, bipartisan legislation was introduced to support low-income Americans as they transition out of welfare and into the workforce. The legislation – entitled the “Accelerating Individuals into the Workforce Act (H.R. 2842)” and sponsored by Reps. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) and Danny Davis (D-IL) – is intended to expedite the time it takes for families to obtain employment. In the opening statement by Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX), Brady cited the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which indicates that despite job openings at the highest level since the government began tracking in 2000, the labor force participation rate is at a near forty-year low. [More]

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Awards PCG Quality Improvement Organization-like Certification

Boston, MA, June 16, 2017 – Public Consulting Group (PCG) is pleased to announce its certification as a Quality Improvement Organization-like (QIO-like) entity by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Already a champion of improvement to the nation’s healthcare system, this new certification will further enable PCG to work to enhance the quality and cost efficiency of care for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries. [More]

Federal Leadership -- It Does Matter

More and more, leadership is talked about and addressed through issues such as appointment, training, and mentoring. Leadership is particularly important and timely when considering child protection and child welfare issues over the last several years. Every election cycle is an opportunity for a local jurisdiction or state to be confronted with the challenges of appointing new leadership. Conflict or controversy often cause a change in leadership, which presents additional challenges, given the requirements of addressing an agency or system in crisis. Finally, there is need to address leadership transition upon retirement, or the decision to leave after a limited time in office. The need for stability and length of leadership is more important than ever to ensure continuity of progress and strength of improvement. [More]

Section 1332 State Innovation Waiver – Recent developments and the newly-released checklist

In follow-up to its letter to Governors regarding the Section 1332 Waiver opportunity, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Treasury released a Section 1332 checklist on May 16 designed to help states pursue ACA State Innovation Waivers. Section 1332 of the ACA allows states to waive specific ACA provisions as long as they apply according to the process set out in regulations and meet the following comparability requirements:

• The waiver will provide coverage to at least a comparable number of the state’s residents as would be provided without the waiver;
• The waiver will provide coverage and cost-sharing protections that are at least as affordable as would be provided without the waiver;
• The waiver will provide for coverage that is at least as comprehensive as would be provided without the waiver; and
• The waiver will not increase the federal deficit. [More]