Coding and Billing Webcast

Participate in the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) webcast, Understanding How to Code and Bill for Critical Care Services, to be held on Thursday, September 14, 2017, at 1:00 p.m. Central Time.

Deb Grider, CPC, COC, CPC-1, CPC-P, CPMA, CEMC, CCS-P, CDIP, a nationally recognized coding and documentation expert from Karen Zupko & Associates, Inc., will review coding for critical care, what services can be reported separately, and how to prepare proper documentation which are important for the financial stability and overall success of the provider organization.

Register online today. The registration fee for this webcast is $30 for SCCM members and $40 for nonmembers.

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the definition and required elements for critical care.
  • Define when to report Modifier 24 or 25 on the same day that critical care is provided.
  • Identify what services are not included in critical care and how to bill to report them separately.
  • Recognize the E/M modifiers and how to appropriately use them.
  • Review documentation examples common to critical care.

This webcast is intended for physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, administrators, and all other professionals who are involved in coding and billing.

Please contact SCCM Customer Service at +1 847 827-6888 with questions.

mRNA Expression of CD74 and IL10

Intensive care unit-acquired infections (IAIs) result in increased hospital and intensive care unit stay, costs and mortality. To date, no biomarker has shown sufficient evidence and ease of application in clinical routine for the identification of patients at risk of IAI. Therefore, Peronnet et al evaluated the association of the systemic mRNA expression of two host response biomarkers, CD74 and IL10, with IAI occurrence in a large cohort of intensive care unit patients.

Their results suggest that two immune biomarkers, CD74 and IL10, could be relevant tools for the identification of IAI risk in intensive care unit patients.

Read the full Concise Critical Appraisal by logging into the SCCM eCommunity. Concise Critical Appraisal is a regular feature aimed at highlighting the best and most relevant literature from a variety of academic journals and encouraging discussion around recent studies and research.

Examining Stress Ulcer Prophylaxis

A decreased frequency of upper gastrointestinal bleeding and a possible association of proton pump inhibitor use with Clostridium difficile and ventilator-associated pneumonia have raised concerns recently. The Reevaluating the Inhibition of Stress Erosions (REVISE) Pilot Trial determined the feasibility of undertaking a larger trial investigating the efficacy and safety of withholding proton pump inhibitors in critically ill patients.

The results support the feasibility of a larger trial to evaluate the safety of withholding stress ulcer prophylaxis.

Read the full Concise Critical Appraisal by logging into the SCCM eCommunity. Concise Critical Appraisal is a regular feature aimed at highlighting the best and most relevant literature from a variety of academic journals and encouraging discussion around recent studies and research.

Raising Malnutrition Awareness

You are encouraged to participate in the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition’s (ASPEN) sixth annual Malnutrition Awareness Week™, which will take place September 18–22, 2017. The purpose of this week is to raise public awareness as pertains to malnutrition and encourage healthcare professionals to assess for malnutrition and intervene early if appropriate. Malnutrition is common in hospitalized patients in the United States and is associated with unfavorable outcomes, including higher infection rates, poor wound healing, longer lengths of stay, and higher frequency of readmission.

The 2017 week is scheduled to have five webinars:

Improving Standardization of Oral Nutrition Supplement Provision in Malnourished Patients – Monday, September 18 – 3 p.m. (CT)

A Multi-Disciplinary Approach to Increasing Awareness of Enteral Nutrition in the Pediatric Patient: A Provider and Parent Perspective – Tuesday, September 19 – 3 p.m. (CT)

On the Fast Track with the Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) Protocol –  Wednesday, September 20 – 3 p.m. (CT)

Approaching an Audit through Accurate Documentation and Coding for Malnutrition Diagnosis – Thursday, September 21 – 3 p.m. (CT)

Electronic Clinical Quality Measures (eCQMs): A Malnutrition Quality Improvement Initiative – Friday, September 22 – 11 a.m. (CT)

Participants will receive continuing education credits for participating in the webinars. ASPEN is accredited to provide medical, pharmacy, nursing and dietetic credits.

Society of Critical Care Medicine members can participate in the webinars for free by using discount code MAW-SCCM.

Visit the official Malnutrition Awareness Week™ site to register or for more information about the week.

Podcast Discusses PANGEA Study

In the newly available iCritical Care podcast SCCM Pod-345 International Survey of Critically Ill Children with Acute Neurological Insults, Margaret Parker, MD, MCCM, speaks with Ericka L. Fink, MD, MS, about the Prevalence of Acute Critical Neurological Disease in Children: A Global Epidemiological Assessment (PANGEA) study.

Published in the April 2017 issue of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine (PCCM), this study offers a worldwide snapshot of acute neurologic conditions among critically ill children.

Overall, 16.2% of children in the reporting ICUs had acute neurologic conditions. Many children had preexisting medical conditions, but 61% had normal neurologic status before their current hospitalizations.

Cardiac arrest, resulting in lack of blood flow to the brain, was the most common overall cause of acute neurologic conditions (23%). Other causes included traumatic brain injury (19%), central nervous system infection or inflammation (16%), and stroke or a mass, such as a brain tumor (9% each).

The study found that regions differed in terms of most common condition reported. Infection/inflammation was the most common cause in Asia, South America, and the sole African hospital contributing to the study. In all other regions, cardiac arrest was the main cause.

Ericka L. Fink, MD, MS, and coauthors believe that the PANGEA data “suggest a vital need for resources to assist in the challenge of improving outcomes for these children throughout the span of the periods of emergency care through to rehabilitation.”

Society of Critical Care Medicine members who are also part of the Pediatrics Section can access the full content of PCCM online by logging into MySCCM.

World Sepsis Congress

As part of Sepsis Awareness Month, the Global Sepsis Alliance and the World Health Organization are teaming up to host the World Sepsis Congress (WSC) Spotlight: Maternal and Neonatal Sepsis on September 12, 2017.

The WSC Spotlight is a free online congress in which 25 renowned experts from all around the world will give presentations on all aspects of maternal and neonatal sepsis, as well as give updates on sepsis in general.

For more information on the program, speakers, time zones, and to register for free, visit

Also, if you have not already done so, you are also encouraged to review the new adult sepsis guidelines released earlier this year and to familiarize yourself with the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s Surviving Sepsis Campaign and its THRIVE initiative, which centers on addressing post-intensive care syndrome (PICS).

Africa Needs Our Support

In many African countries, critical care medicine remains informal, uncoordinated, or even absent. A shortage of trained healthcare providers can put thousands of sick and injured patients at risk every day.

To help address these issues, the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) will send healthcare providers to the All Africa Anaesthesia Congress in Abuja, Nigeria, in November 2017. There they will work to train more than 200 participants from African countries in six different Fundamentals courses.

We need your support to ensure that this vital training is provided to healthcare professionals in Africa who can improve the quality of care provided to critically ill and injured patients.

Join SCCM in bringing critical care education to a part of the world where it is truly needed. Visit to make a donation towards resource-limited areas today.

Congress Abstract Presentations

Expand your critical care knowledge and enhance the care you deliver to patients by attending the Society of Critical Care Medicine’s (SCCM) 47th Critical Care Congress. Register online using your Customer ID and password, or contact SCCM Customer Service at +1 847 827-6888.

The Society’s annual Congress will be held February 25 to 28, 2018, in San Antonio, Texas, USA. Learn about the latest developments in critical care by attending the always-popular abstract presentations offered at Congress:

Star Research Presentations
These presentations will be scheduled, unopposed, on Sunday, February 25, 2018, from 2:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. The top 64 abstracts submitted will be highlighted.

Awards Presentations
Winners of SCCM’s abstract-based awards will be recognized during a ceremony on Tuesday, February 27, 2018.

Research Snapshot Theaters
Research Snapshot award winners and authors of abstracts and the top case reports will present their submissions with time for questions and answers. Sessions will be moderated by noted faculty and experts to facilitate the exchange of ideas and commentary. Presentations will be held in designated sections of the Exhibit Hall on Sunday, February 25, through Tuesday, February 27, 2018.

For more information about Congress, or to view the Preliminary Program, visit

Examining Chest Compressions

Mechanical chest compression (CC) during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) with AutoPulse or LUCAS devices has not improved survival from cardiac arrest. Cohort studies suggest risk of excess damage. Therefore, Koster et al studied the safety of mechanical CC compared with manual CC, as pertains to excess damage in patients with in-hospital cardiac arrest or with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest arriving with manual CPR at the emergency department.

They found that LUCAS does not cause significantly more serious or life-threatening visceral damage than manual CC. For AutoPulse, significantly more serious or life-threatening visceral damage than manual CC cannot be excluded.

Read the full Concise Critical Appraisal by logging into the SCCM eCommunity. Concise Critical Appraisal is a regular feature aimed at highlighting the best and most relevant literature from a variety of academic journals and encouraging discussion around recent studies and research.

Apply for Pharmacist Traineeship

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Research and Education Foundation is now accepting applications for its Critical Care Concentrated Traineeship.

During this 5-month, ACPE-accredited educational experience, trainees will receive intensive distance and experiential training that accelerates their ability to be the medication expert on interdisciplinary teams to optimize the safety, quality and care of critically ill patients.

The deadline to submit applications is October 10, 2017.

VCCR: Online Trainee Education

Virtual Critical Care Rounds (VCCR): Adult and Pediatric are designed to better prepare students, residents, and fellows to contribute to the diagnosis and management of the critically ill adult or pediatric patient during their intensive care unit rounds.

VCCR, the enhanced replacement for the adult and pediatric Resident ICU (RICU) programs, features:

  • Professionally-narrated modules with clear learning objectives, engaging case studies, interactive questions, and a list of additional resources for further exploration
  • An extensive topic selection with lectures developed by content experts on each subject
  • SCCM’s efficient, learning management platform, which allows program directors to view and monitor participants’ progress throughout the courses

VCCR: Adult and Pediatric are each made up of 2 different courses. VCCR I focuses on the student level and VCCR II focuses on the resident and fellow levels. Each course is available as a program director-led or a self-directed course.

Visit or for more details including a module listing and to make a purchase.

FCCS: Tropical Diseases Course

The Fundamental Critical Care Support (FCCS) program has expanded its scope of course offerings with the FCCS: Tropical Diseases course.

Developed to educate learners about the transmission, symptoms, management, and prevention of tropical disease, the FCCS: Tropical Diseases course combines the FCCS core curriculum with information needed for the initial identification and care of infected patients who are or may become critically ill. A certificate will be issued to individuals who successfully complete the course.

Course topics include:

  • Chikungunya virus disease
  • Dengue fever
  • Ebola virus disease
  • Hemorrhagic fevers: Marburg and Lassa viruses
  • Leptospirosis
  • Severe malaria
  • Typhoid fever
  • Viral encephalitis
  • Yellow fever
  • Zika virus infection

For more information and to start planning your course, visit or contact the Fundamentals team at or +1 847 827-6869.

Focal Seizures CE Series

Making the Connection: Improving ICU Healthcare Teams’ Response and Management of Focal Seizures is a two-part complimentary interactive educational program designed to improve the diagnosis and management of focal seizures in the intensive care unit (ICU).

Early Diagnosis and Individualized Management of Focal Seizures in the Intensive Care Unit, part 1 of this series, is now available. Join expert faculty as they discuss current and emerging therapies and strategies to overcome specific epilepsy-related challenges in the critical care patient.

This activity is supported by an educational grant from UCB, Inc., and is jointly provided by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare.

Physicians, nurses, and pharmacists are eligible to receive 0.5 hours of continuing medical education/continuing education credit. This opportunity is available through June 2018.

Part 2 will be released later this summer.

ICU Liberation Reduced Registration

Reduced registration rates end August 16, 2017, for ICU Liberation and Animation: Operationalizing the PAD Guidelines Through the ABCDEF Bundle, which will be held September 12 and 13, 2017, at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, USA.  Register online using your Customer ID and password, or contact SCCM Customer Service at +1 847 827-6888. Limited seats remain.

Course participants will gain strategies for effective implementation of the pain, agitation and delirium (PAD) guidelines during this two-day didactic and simulation conference, which is held in partnership with the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) and Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Internationally-recognized faculty will present lectures on patient management strategies and engage participants in clinical scenarios through small-group simulation labs. During the course, participants will:

  • Review the PAD guidelines and ABCDEF Bundle
  • Learn strategies for implementation and management of the PAD guidelines and ABCDEF Bundle in the intensive care unit (ICU)
  • Gain a significant hands-on experience by applying strategies during patient scenario simulations
  • Earn 14 continuing medical education credit hours (available to physicians, nurses and pharmacists)

Hospitals are encouraged to send a team of two or more participants who will then be able to implement these strategies within their hospital’s ICU after the conference.

For more information including the agenda, faculty listing, and continuing education details, visit the course webpage.

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