HYPERTENSION EXAMINATION TO BE GIVEN ANNUALLY ON COMPUTER AT MULTI SITES
DATE AND SITE OF 2010 HYPERTENSION EXAMINATION TO BE SET SHORTLY
REDESIGNATION OF PHYSICIANS ORIGINALLY DESIGNATED AS HYPERTENSION SPECIALISTS IN 1999 AND 2000
The ASH Specialist Program has issues new certificates without an expiration date for those physicians originally designated as Hypertension Specialists in 1999 and 2000, without requiring any re-examination or other criteria.
The ASH Specialists Program Inc. and ASH established the Association of Hypertension Specialists (AHS) as a Special Interest Group within ASH to serve as an advocacy group dedicated to promoting increased recognition for expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension and providing increased resources for the care of patients with hypertension
The AHS held its 1st meeting on May 6, 2009, after the “Hypertension Highlights” Session at the 2009 ASH Annual Scientific Meeting in San Francisco.
Initial goals of the Association of Hypertension Specialists ( AHS ):
To obtain a medical specialty code description from CMS to identify a hypertension specialist.
To meet with members of the medical insurance industry to negotiate and promote recognition and increased reimbursement for hypertension specialists.
To host forums during the annual meeting of the American Society of Hypertension, and at other meetings, to learn of ways to improve the practice of the hypertension specialists, including the incorporation of new technology.
To devise brief presentations that may be used by national and local speakers to use when presenting to policy makers, i.e. government, insurance industry, hospital staffs, etc.
ASH Specialist Program, Inc. and ASH have launched an initiative to
#1: To have hypertension recognized as a body of knowledge sufficient to be the foundation for a specialist practitioner.
#2: To obtain identifier codes for physicians who are Designated Specialists in Clinical Hypertension
Health Care Provider Taxonomy Code-- National Uniform Claim Committee (NUCC)
Health Care Provider Specialty Code for “Hypertension Specialists---(Center for Medicare Management (CMS)
#3: To develop and implement criteria to designate and certify hypertension centers, since this is often a pathway utilized by CMSS and other payers to reimburse for certain specialty services
Hypertension is a complex illness that varies greatly in severity. Approximately 15% of those with hypertension are difficult to treat (“resistant”). Moreover, approximately 5% of those with hypertension have a secondary (known etiology) form of the disease.
There are currently only 1,500 individuals who have become certified as hypertension specialists by passing the examination given by the ASH Specialist Program. Thus, it is apparent that to meet the demand for patient care, many more hypertension specialists will be required. Because of the important role that these hypertension specialists will play in the prevention of cardiovascular and renal disease, it is necessary to describe the characteristics of the speciality in addition to the passage of the examination.
Hypertension Centers will be accredited at three levels, with Level III being the most complete. One over-arching criterion for accreditation of a Hypertension Center is that the facility will be directed by a physician who has received designation as a Hypertension Specialist by the Hypertension Specialist Program of ASH.
Level II Centers will be located in either academic medical centers or in large multi-specialty clinics. These centers may exist independently or as part of large division(s). In addition to all of the above criteria, these centers will have the following criteria:
Meets Level I criteria
Director should hold an academic appointment of Associate Professor or higher
Center should have the ability to perform extensive multi-specialty examination and treatment
Center should be involved in research, both basic and applied
Center should be involved in the training of those interested in hypertension as a specialty
Center should be involved in the publication of scholarly articles related to the field of hypertension and related disorders