Monday Memo
Monday Memo
Monday, March 27, 2017
What's NEW at Athena Forum

Happy Social Worker's Month


Happy Social Workers Month from Athena Forum

Social Workers STAND UP: Strength, Conviction, Promise

Athena Forum recognizes all Social Workers this Month!

Ellen Fink-Samnick, MSW, ACSW, LCSW, CCM, CRP
Director of Social Work Education
Athena Forum, LLC
Boca Raton, FL

Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) are using Athena Forum courses to educate their staff toward organizational goals:

According to Tom Rasmussen, CEO of Athena Forum Institute, "We now have about 90 ACO's as clients, such as Allina Health in MN and Beacon Health in Maine, plus others."

Athena Forum is looking at the needs of ACO Directors of Case Management and matching their expressed educational needs to current and future courses on Athena Forum. Watch for future updates on this topic.

Want to know more? Call our Sales Team:

Let's Talk: Allergies and Asthma

Spring has arrived early this year and with it, early budding trees, the main culprit of spring allergies according to Flonase.com, are everywhere. If you look at the U.S map, it appears only the northeast, Dakotas and desserts of the west are spared the misery of most spring allergies from tree pollens. The association between allergies and Asthma triggers is well established. So what can people with Asthma do to avoid exacerbations during peak pollen seasons?

Athena Forum Institute Asthma course, Module A on Pathophysiology has the following recommendations:

During warm weather, patients should stay indoors with windows closed and air conditioner on when pollen and spore counts are elevated.

Additional steps which should be taken as appropriate include:

  • Staying indoors for a couple of hours after grass is mown
  • Using air filtration devices, especially during the midday and afternoon, when pollen and spore counts are highest
  • Engaging in outdoor activities shortly after sunup when pollen counts are lowest
  • Wearing a pollen mask when outdoors during pollen season
  • Bathing prior to bedtime to avoid bringing pollens and triggers into the bed

Online sources or newspapers can be checked for local pollen counts.

Tips from our featured course

Case Managers Advocate for Asthma Patients

When managing asthma patients, whether at a hospital, Managed Care Organization (MCO) or Accountable Care Organization (ACO), CMs should refer to the current asthma care guidelines endorsed by their organization. Keep in mind that appropriate clinical judgment is always required.

The provision of care outside of guidelines can result in complex issues that must be resolved. When a particular medical procedure is denied by the MCO, ACO or another issue related to a patient's care arises, patients have the right to appeal the decision. However, appeals and paperwork are frustrating for both patients and providers.

It is best to address and attempt to resolve problems early. The CM can facilitate this process. How the CM handles patient concerns can have a significant impact on how patients perceive the organization's concern for their well-being.

[Asthma, Module C, Transdisciplinary Team]

The Role of Case Managers
in Asthma Care Patient Engagement

Patient education and engagement is a cornerstone of effective asthma management. It helps patients gain the motivation, skills and confidence they need to manage their condition.

"CMs who provide asthma patients and families with self-management support, help bridge the gap between the provider and patient, assist patients in navigating the healthcare system, and offer emotional support and encourage patient engagement which leads to asthma control."

Teresa C. Fugate, RN, BBA, CCM, CPHQ
Medicare STARS Strategic Consultant
Louisville, KY

[Asthma, Module C, Transdisciplinary Team]

Notice from the Publisher

I want to thank our 20,000 healthcare professionals for requesting new topics on Athena Forum.

Thomas A. Rasmussen
CEO & Publisher
Athena Forum Institute

Monday Memo Editor

Cathy Wright, BSN, RN

Clinical Editor

Athena Forum

Contact the Editor


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