Houston, TX 77230
To: Lois Stephens-Newman, MSN, RN, CRRN
ARN's mission is to promote and advance professional rehabilitation
nursing practice through education,
advocacy, collaboration, and
research to enhance the quality of life for those afflicted by
Southeast Texas Chapter ARN holds monthly educational sessions, usually
on the fourth Tuesday of the
month, from 5:00-7:30 PM. Programs
with approved contact hours, dinner, and networking are offered.
We visit and tour rehabilitation facilities throughout the greater
Our primary purpose is to promote professional growth and excellence in
rehabilitation nursing through knowledge, education and
The Southeast Texas Chapter
ARN mailing address is going to be changing in December 2011, please
make sure that you update your files. We will keep you posted.
Southeast Texas ARN
POB # 300121
Houston, Texas 77230
grateful THANK YOU to our 2014 Expo Sponsors & Exhibitors:
ARJOHuntleigh / KCI
Gulf Coast Prosthetics, LLC
TIRR /Memorial Hermann Hospital
Victoria Personal Care
CNS Neuro Skills
REVA Medical, Inc.
Smith & Nephew Wound Care
|And to our....
2014 Monthly meeting hosts
||Canceled due to
||Michael E. DeBakey
Touchstone Neurorecovery Center & Nexus Specialty Hospital
and Scholarship Fundraiser
||Michael E. DeBakey
Rehabilitation Hospital - North Houston
||Holiday Gala & Awards
Banquet/ SETX Chapter ARN
We sincerely appreciate your
& Regenesis Biomedical
July & August Educational Meeting
Monthly Meeting Flyers:
Beginning in March 2009, SE Texas
Chapter ARN will send out monthly meeting flyers by email only.
Meetings will also continue to be posted on this website. Members,
if we do not have a current email address for you, please send your
current email address to Betty Clark at
September 2015 Educational Meeting
The September 2014 educational
meeting will be held on Tuesday September 22, 2015 at the
HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital—North Houston 19002 McKay Drive
Humble, Texas 77338. Time 5:00 - 7:30 PM. Sponsor: HealthSouth
Click here for further details.
October 2015 Educational Meeting
The October educational meeting will
be held on Tuesday October 20, 2015 at the Memorial Hermann NW
Hospital located at 1635 North Loop West Houston, Texas 77008. Time
5:00 - 7:30 PM. Sponsor: Memorial Hermann NW Program: TBA
Click here for further details.
November 2015 Gala & Awards Meeting
The November 2015 Gala & Awards
Meeting will be held on Tuesday November 17, 2015 at Location
Cavatores 2120 Ella Blvd, Houston, Texas 77008. Time 6:00-0830PM.
Sponsor: SETX Chapter ARN.
Click here for further details.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS & SAVE THE DATE!!
Rehabilitation Nursing CE Workshop:
The SETX Chapter of ARN will have
the CE & CCM Workshop for nurses to maintain their Certification in
Rehabilitation. The planned date will be scheduled for two programs
in 2015 and the locations are TBA. Please encourage your staff to
consider participating in this CE & CCM Workshop to help obtain CEs
for recertification in rehabilitation nursing. Registration forms
are always available at our monthly educational meetings.
Scholarships will be considered for
rehabilitation nursing related education such as formal course work,
continuing education programs and conferences, National ARN
Educational Conference, and the SETX Chapter Rehabilitation Nursing
CE / CCM Workshops. Start planning ahead for a scholarship award for
2015!!! There are going to be 5 scholarships awarded in 2015. Three
scholarships will be awarded in the following categories for the
2015 National Conference: Perfect attendance at monthly educational
meetings, Committee Chairperson, and Paper/Poster presentation. A
total of seven scholarships will be awarded for SETX Chapter members
who apply. Please consider applying for a scholarship in 2015.
for an application.
Scholarship Winners for the June Expo 2015: 5 scholarships to be
awarded to the National Conference in New Orleans, LA.
National ARN Conference Scholarships: IT COULD BE YOU!!!!
ARN National Conference Scholarships:
TARN National Conference
Three scholarship drawings to help towards attendance at the
November ARN National Education Conference will be drawn at the
August educational meeting of 2015 at the Michael E. DeBakey VAMC.
Chapter members who meet requirements in the following three
categories were awarded to the following Chapter Members:
• Perfect Meeting Attendance: attend 100% of Chapter meetings
January through August, 2015
• Committee Chairperson: All active committee chairpersons
• Paper or Poster Presenter: All who will be presenting a paper or
poster at the ARN National Conference
Rehabilitation Nurse of the Year Award:
Members are encouraged to nominate
colleagues who are members of the SETX Chapter of ARN for this
annual award. Forms to nominate a member are handed out at each of
our monthly meetings or available on the website:
. Click here
nomination form. Contact Virginia (Becky) Thayer @
for further information.
Deadline for nominating a member for this prestigious award is
August 31, 2015.
***2015 Rehabilitation Nurse of the Year***
“Becky” Thayer, MSN, RN, CRRN***
We are proud of your contributions
to rehabilitation and your dedication to the pursuit of excellence
in Rehabilitation Nursing Practice.
Congratulations to our newest CRRNs!!!
Latishia Graves, BSN, RN, CRRN
inform us of your newest CRRNs so that we can congratulate them here
on our Website.
We are proud of your
CRRN EXAM: New Registration
Due to a change in testing
companies, the registration process and deadlines for the CRRN exam
have changed. Candidate applications and fees must be mailed in to
CASTLE WORLDWIDE, INC. by the following deadlines:
ARN members: $270
If you are not currently an ARN Member but would like to become one
and receive the reduced rate, simply
click here to join ARN prior to submitting your application.
The fees are subject to change.
To register for the examination, candidates must submit the
application received by the application deadline.
||Application Receipt Deadlines
|June 1-30, 2015
||April 15, 2015 (May 1, 2015, with late fee)
|December 1-31, 2015
||October 15, 2015 (November 1, 2015, with late fee)
Late fee options
are now available; contact ARN National.
A new content
outline became effective for the June 2007 examination. This is posted
now has only 175 questions (25 pretest: un-scored), and
candidates will have up to 3 hours to complete the exam.
Candidate handbooks and application forms are available from ARN National (1-800-229-7530). Registration forms may also be downloaded from the ARN National website(www.rehabnurse.org ).
SE Texas Chapter is very active,
with thirteen committees working throughout the year. Committee
members are needed!! Get involved – it’s a great way to meet
colleagues, share ideas, learn, and… have fun! Contact Virginia
(Becky) Thayer at
for more information or to sign-up. Committee sign-up sheets will be
available at our Monthly Educational meetings to sign up and become
more active in our Chapter’s activities.
SETX Chapter ARN is holding a
membership contest from April through July 2015. The member
recruiting the most new members will receive a $25 Chili’s gift
A second membership contest will be held August through November
2015. The member recruiting the most new members will receive a $25
gift card for Ramono’s Macaroni Grill.
Membership Participation Incentive:
Back for 2015
Those SE Texas Chapter ARN members
who actively serve on:
1) the Board of Directors
2) Chair a committee
3) actively serve on a committee OR
4) attend a Chapter meeting 8 out of 10 months in 2015
will be awarded a free ticket to the 2015 Holiday Gala & Awards
Banquet in November.
Thank you for your active participation!
Update Your Contact Information:
Please help us keep our membership
roster current! Update your address, phone, e-mail, and other contact
www.rehabnurse.org in the Members only section. Please notify
Betty Clark at firstname.lastname@example.org
also, so that the Chapter records are current.
On-line Membership Directory:
Did you know that you are able to
obtain other members’ contact information through the on-line
Membership Directory at
www.rehabnurse.org in the Members only section? A listing of
all SE Texas Chapter members is also available, using the search by
Community Activity Report:
Are you involved in a rehabilitation
related community activity? Be sure to report your volunteer service
to SETX Chapter ARN!! One of the Chapter goals for 2008-2009,
2009-2010, 2010-2011, 2011-2012, 2012-2013 and again for 2013-2014
is to increase our involvement in rehabilitation related community
activities, and this will help toward our application for the
Chapter of the Year award for the National Conference, in New
Orleans, LA in 2015.
Examples of activities include health fairs, SIRES therapeutic
riding, Parish nursing activities, the MS 150 bicycle ride, and
events such as nurses involved in RSVP texas.org.
to download the form to complete, and turn in at the next Chapter
meeting. It is important for our Chapter to document the hours of
related community activity our members are giving to advance
rehabilitation in our communities throughout the Houston and
surrounding areas. Activities from July 2013 and after are eligible.
Community Action – SILENT AUCTION:
Beginning in 2004 & 2005 the Chapter
supported two worthy causes in the community: T.H. Rodgers School
and Camp Xtreme. T.H. Rodgers is an HISD school that educates many
children with disabilities, and Camp Xtreme is a summer camp devoted
to children who use wheelchairs. Since these first donations the
Chapter has contributed to the “Be an Angel Fund” for playground
equipment for children with disabilities and Camp Xtreme, the SIRES
Therapeutic Riding: a therapeutic horse riding program for
individuals with disabilities; June Rusche Hamrah Camp for All, a
barrier free camp for children and adults with chronic illness or
disabilities and their families; the Paws for Patriots an
organization that trains specially bred dogs from Florida to assist
veterans, American Heroes, with disabilities; the Jonie & Friends an
organization that provides rehabilitation camps and activities for
wounded warriors and their families; RSVPtexas.org a not-for-profit
organization providing physical rehabilitation services to uninsured
individuals with disabilities. In 2014, the Chapter contributed
$930.00 to Lighthouse of Houston from the silent auction at the
annual Gala and Silent Auction. Lighthouse of Houston is an
organization based in Houston, Texas that provides physical
rehabilitation services for Children’s Summer Day Camp for children
with disabilities. We are proud to be able to contribute to their
efforts and outreach to make a difference.
The Chapter wishes to continue to assist community agencies who
provide services for persons with disabilities. If you know of an
organization or program that we can help support please contact one
of the Board members so we can consider them for a donation in 2015.
Thanks to the generous support of Chapter members, the 2014 Silent
Auction was once again a tremendous success!!!
Gala raised $930.00
from the Silent Auction to Lighthouse of Houston.
GREAT job SETX Chapter Members!!!!
Plan ahead because before we know
it the 2015 Gala and Silent Auction will be on our doorsteps. Start
thinking of items that could be donated to generate funds for our
Community Organizations that focus on rehabilitation for individuals
with disabilities. It is a great way for our Chapter to continue
supporting the services available within the Houston and surrounding
Items to donate!!
• Handmade items: jewelry, crafts, sewing,…
• Gift Cards to favorite local restaurants or stores
• Christmas items for the Holidays
• Collectables: coins, paper weights, dolls,…
• Themed Baskets
• What ever creative ideas are always welcome
Help support our Communities
throughout the Houston area by donating an item(s) to Auction!
Newsletter: "Rehab Round-Up"
Our Newsletter, “Rehab Round-Up” is published twice yearly and sent
out electronically. Glennys Asselin, MSN/ED, RN, CRRN, AA is the
editor. The Fall 2014 edition will be emailed out early April and
the fall edition will be emailed out in early October. Make sure we
have your current email address so you do not miss an issue. If you
would like a copy, please contact Glennys Asselin at email@example.com
Items are needed for the
newsletter – brief articles, promotions, legislative updates,
clinical tips, etc. Submit to Glennys Asselin at
National ARN News:
Please visit the National ARN
or refer to your ARN Network newsletter to learn more about :
ARN –CAT – Competency Assessment Tool
New RNF Research Agenda
Locating members or updating your contact information
CRRN Exam New Content Outline
Safe Patient Handling Toolkit
Rehabilitation Nursing online
New Position Statement on Documentation of Medical Necessity
New On-line CRRN Practice Exam
FREE on-line contact hours for members
Education Contact Hours:
ARN National is no longer an approved maintenance provider for CDMSC, CCM or
CRCC continuing education.
However, SETX chapter membership voted to provide CCM continuing
for at least five (5) of the ten (10) annual educational programs.
Please see the calendar
page each month for posting of CCM contact hours. If you have any
concerns, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Education Contact Hours:CERTIFICATION UPDATE
CRRN Update: Enhancing the
Points-of-Credit Renewal Procedure
By Therese Pietsch, PhD RN CRRN CNE, RNCB Chair
The Rehabilitation Nursing Certification Board met in October 2012
and approved a modification to the points of credit renewal
procedure that will become approved a modification to the point of
credit renewal procedure that will become effective January 1, 2014.
The change is primarily based on national trends and expectations of
RNs who maintain certification in specialty areas of practice. This
article provides specific details about the upcoming change to your
CRRN renewal procedure. More details to come.....
ARN Health Policy Digest (From National
Welcome to this month’s edition of
the ARN Health Policy Digest. This member benefit provides monthly
updates on health policy, legislative, and regulatory developments
that may be of interest to rehabilitation nurses.
ARN Meets with MedPAC
On February 9 ARN Health Policy Committee member Beth Demakos,
Health Policy & Advocacy Manager Jordan Wildermuth, and District
Policy Group’s Kara Gainer met with staff from the Medicare Payment
Advisory Commission (MedPAC) to discuss ARN’s concerns with MedPAC’s
recommendation to Congress for site neutrality for 22 conditions.
Overall, ARN believes that the determination of the need for
intensive rehabilitation is dependent on the effects of a patient’s
injury or illness (impairments, functional deficits, achievable
goals), as opposed to the diagnosis. Basing a site-neutral
determination on an acute discharge-diagnosis-related group (DRG)
prevents the assessment of function, an important component in
determining the proper post-acute setting. ARN continues to actively
engage in this issue.
ARN Meets with Cosponsors of Better Care, Lower Cost Act
On February 24, President Sharon Murphy-Potts, Health Policy
Committee Member Beth Demakos, Health Policy & Advocacy Manager
Jordan Wildermuth, and District Policy Group’s Jeremy Scott met with
the offices of Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT), Senator Johnny Isakson
(R-GA), and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) to discuss reintroduction of
the Better Care, Lower Cost Act in the 114th Congress. ARN supported
the legislation in the 113th Congress and continues to work with the
sponsors and has recommended additional language in regards to care
transitions and including the rehabilitation nurse as a care
The Better Care, Lower Cost Act would amend Medicare to establish an
integrated chronic care delivery program, or Better Care Program (BCP),
that would promote coordination among care providers, case managers,
and social workers to ensure that patients with chronic illness are
empowered to seek the appropriate care.
ARN attends AMRPA Spring Executive Forum
President Sharon Murphy-Potts and Health Policy & Advocacy Manager
Jordan Wildermuth attended AMRPA’s Spring Executive Forum which is
held for AMRPA members to meet and hear from federal policy makers
about the key issues that are impacting inpatient rehabilitation
hospitals and units. Speakers included Sean Cavanaugh, Deputy
Administrator and Director, CMS; Laurence Wilson, Director, Chronic
Care Group, CMS; and Veronica Dunn, Legislative Assistant to Senator
Charles Schumer (D-NY).
ARN to attend Listening Session on the IMPACT Act
ARN has been invited, along with other stakeholders, to attend a
listening session in Washington D.C. on March 5 with the purpose of
providing input to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on
the implementation of the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care
Transformation Act of 2014 (IMPACT Act).
The IMPACT Act was passed on September 18, 2014. The Act requires
the submission of standardized clinical assessment data for measures
in five domains: Functional status, cognitive function, and changes
in function and cognitive function; skin integrity and changes in
skin integrity; medication reconciliation; incidence of major falls;
and communicating the existence of and providing for the transfer of
health information and care preferences. The Act will use
assessments submitted to CMS by Long-Term Care Hospitals (LTCH),
Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNF), Home Health Agencies (HHA) and
Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities (IRF). The goal of the Act is to
enable comparison of assessment data across post-acute care
Modern Healthcare: Looming Nursing Shortage Fueled by Faculty
This school year, more than half of nursing colleges reported having
vacant full-time positions, and 78,000 student applications could
not be accepted because of faculty shortages, according to an
American Association of Colleges of Nursing survey. The Institute of
Medicine has recommended increasing the number of nurses with
doctorates. "We did see this shortage coming, so the good news is
that we have been preparing to bring more faculty on board," ANA
President Pamela Cipriano said. For more information, please click
Nursing Administration Scope and Standards Revision Workgroup
Seeks Public Comments
The Nursing Administration Scope and Standards Revision Workgroup
seeks public comments on the draft document Nursing Administration:
Scope and Standards of Practice, Second Edition. The draft document
is available for download here.
CMS Announces Five Changes to RAC Program, Halts Documentation
In December, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
(CMS) extended its currents contracts with the Recovery Auditor (RAC)
program, despite the fact that RACs contribute significantly to the
over 900,000 appeals submitted to the Office of Medicare Hearings
and Appeals. Given its apparent need for improvement, CMS announced
a series of changes to the RAC program for 2015; they are explained
in detail on the following page.
MedPAC Offers Medicare Reimbursement Recommendations for
Rehabilitation Hospitals and Skilled Nursing Facilities
At its December and January meetings, the Medicare Payment Advisory
Commission (MedPAC), composed a set of recommendations related to
changes in Medicare reimbursement policy. Specifically, their
recommendation states: “The Congress should direct the Secretary of
Health and Human Services to eliminate the differences in payment
between inpatient rehabilitation facilities and skilled nursing
facilities for selected conditions…Inpatient rehabilitation
facilities should receive relief from regulations specifying the
intensity and mix of services for site-neutral conditions.” Click
here for a more detailed explanation of the suggested improvements.
MedPAC Finalizes Payment Update Recommendations for IRFs;
Reiterates SNF Recommendations
At its January, 2015 meeting, the Medicare Payment Advisory
Commission (MedPAC) adopted a package of draft recommendations to
Congress making 2015 payment updates for hospital inpatient and
outpatient services, ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs), outpatient
dialysis, hospice, inpatient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs), and
long-term care hospitals. The commission also decided to rerun
several updates from last year’s report, including that for skilled
nursing facilities (SNFs). More information may be found on the
HHS: Applications for Awards, Administration for Community Living
The National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and
Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) – Disability and Rehabilitation
Research Projects (DRRPs) – Community Living and Participation, and
Health and Function invites applicants to submit for awards within
the Administration for Community Living. More information may be
NIDDR FY 2014 Organization Highlights Report Now Available
The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research has
announced that the NIDRR FY 2014 Organization Highlights report is
now available. The report provides a summary of NIDRR’s activities
and accomplishments in fiscal year 2014. The report can be accessed
on the following page.
To connect to the links noted in the above updates please visit the
National Website at
LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE UPDATE - May, 2015
SUSTAINABLE GROWTH RATE REPEALED
On April 16, 2015 President Obama signed legislation into law that
officially repealed the sustainable growth rate (SGR). The bill
signing came after months of negotiations between House and Senate
leadership, and ends the annual need for so-called "doc fix" bills
to prevent significant cuts to physician payments. The law
institutes 0.5% physician payment updates, or increases, for 5
years, after which payments will be value-based. This is part of a
growing trend toward basing payments for treatments on outcomes and
quality, rather than quantity, or "fee-for-service". While there was
an amendment to permanently end Medicare Therapy caps as part of the
SGR package, it did not pass. The current therapy cap exceptions
process will continue until December 31, 2017.
BUNDLING & COORDINATING POST-ACUTE CARE ACT REINTRODUCED
Three House Representatives introduced the "Bundling and
Coordinating Post-Acute Care Act of 2015 on March, 2015. The bill,
which was also introduced in the last Congress, would create a
payment bundle for post-acute care services, including long-term
care hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. There have been some
concerns among post-acute providers that the bill is overly vague
and could affect quality of care. Some praised the bill's provisions
that incentivize better care coordination among care providers. (ARN
is a member of the Coalition to Preserve Rehabilitation which
submitted written testimony to Congress outlining concerns with the
CMS EVALUATES THE 1ST YEAR OF THE BUNDLED PAYMENT CARE INITIATIVE
CMS released its report assessing the first year of the initiative:
Bundled Payment Care Initiative. Using claims data, the report
outlines the first year of the program's 4 models impact on provider
performance and outcomes. CMS concludes that the models have
positively affected provider performance and the report identifies
trends in the data that may be useful for shaping the program in the
future, which is expected to grow in 2015. The full report is
available on the website.
Cindy Gebhard BSN RN
||Touchstone Neurorecovery Centers is a
post acute rehabilitation facility nationally known for being on
the leading edge of neurobehavioral rehabilitation.
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