Recent News

Texas Health Steps providers should not use Magellan Diagnostics’ LeadCare analyzers for venous blood lead tests. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Health Advisory warning that the analyzers may underestimate blood lead levels and provide falsely low test results. The FDA recommends against using LeadCare analyzers for venous blood samples.

The safety alert does not apply to capillary blood lead test results collected by fingerstick or heelstick. Texas Health Steps providers may continue to use LeadCare II Analyzers for point-of-care blood lead screening when testing capillary samples.

Visit the CDC Health Advisory website for more information about the safety alert.

RSV season ends April 14

The 2016-17 Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) season will end April 14 for all Texas counties. No extensions were granted this season based on recommendations from the Texas Pediatric RSV Task Force.

Coverage of Synagis (palivizumab) will end April 14 for people enrolled in Medicaid (both traditional and managed care) and the Children with Special Health Care Needs services program. Pharmacy claims and prior authorization requests will not be accepted or reviewed after that date.

Improving transition from pediatric to adult health care is a national priority, medical home standard, and meaningful use requirement for electronic health records. A new tip sheet from Got Transition and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) supports delivery of recommended health-care transition services in pediatric and adult primary and specialty care settings.

The tip sheet includes:
• An updated list of transition-related CPT codes.
• Clinical vignettes with recommended CPT and ICD-10 codes.
• Detailed CPT coding descriptions for transition-related services with selected coding tips.

More information is available from the Got Transition website.

The Texas Department of State Health Services Office of Title V Maternal and Child Health is soliciting feedback from primary care and specialty care physicians about their experiences with transition and medical home services. Information gathered will be used to improve support services for providers who care for children and youth with special health-care needs and their families.

The survey is brief, and responses are anonymous. You can access the survey here. Your participation is appreciated.

Effective February 1, 2017, the Pediatric Symptom Checklist-17 (PSC-17) may be used for adolescent mental health screening conducted during a Texas Health Steps checkup.

Screening for behavioral, social, and emotional development is required at each THSteps checkup. An additional mental health screen is required once for patients between the ages of 12 and 18. The approved screening tools are listed below:

  • Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PSC-35)
  • Pediatric Symptom Checklist-17 (PSC-17)
  • Pediatric Symptom Checklist for Youth (Y-PSC)
  • Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9)
  • Car, Relax, Alone, Forget, Family, and Trouble Checklist (CRAFFT)

The approved tools can be downloaded and used at no cost to the provider.

More information on THSteps checkups and adolescent mental health screening requirements is available on the THSteps website.