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ICH CAHPS Survey Administration and Specifications Manual, Version 12.0
folder_openChanges to Protocols and Guidelinescalendar_todayPosted February 2, 2024

The In-center Hemodialysis CAHPS (ICH CAHPS) Survey Administration and Specifications Manual, Version 12.0 is now available on the ICH CAHPS website in MS Word and PDF formats. The protocols and guidelines described in Version 12.0 of this manual are effective immediately and supersede those described in previous versions of the manual.

Please note: At the end of Chapter 1 is a “What’s New or Different?” section, which contains a list of the chapters in the manual in which the major changes in survey protocols and materials are described.

Updated ICH CAHPS Survey protocols and procedures will be reviewed during the ICH CAHPS Survey Vendor Update Training session that will take place on Wednesday, February 7, 2024. A training agenda and the presentation slides for those training sessions will also be posted on the ICH CAHPS website by 5:00 PM ET today, February 2, 2024.

Please contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call toll-free at 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions.

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Training Materials for the 2024 ICH CAHPS Survey Vendor Update Training Session are Available
folder_openTraining Informationcalendar_todayPosted February 2, 2024

The training materials that will be used during the ICH CAHPS Survey Vendor Update Training Session that will be held from 2:00 to 3:30 PM ET on February 7, 2024, are available on the ICH CAHPS website at the following link:

Training Materials (ichcahps.org)

An email message containing instructions for connecting to the training session via Zoom is being sent to all registered attendees starting on January 31, 2024. Please contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team at ichcahps@rti.org if anyone registered for your organization does not receive this email message by COB Monday, February 5, 2024.

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Updated ICH CAHPS Survey Materials for the 2024 Spring Survey
folder_openChanges to Survey Materialscalendar_todayPosted February 1, 2024

As was first announced and posted in December 2023 (ICH CAHPS Announcements - Updated ICH CAHPS Survey Materials for the 2024 Spring Survey), the following ICH CAHPS Survey materials have been updated for the 2024 Spring Survey and have been posted on the ICH CAHPS website:

Materials posted to the “Survey Materials” page here:

  • Mail surveys in all approved languages (5 mail surveys)
  • Telephone Scripts in both approved languages (2 scripts)

Materials posted under the “For Vendors” dropdown:

  • Minimum Business Requirements (MBR)

Materials posted to the “Data Submission Resources” page here:

  • XML Data Layout File

These updated ICH CAHPS Survey materials will be discussed during the ICH CAHPS Survey Vendor Update Training session on Wednesday, February 7, 2024. A training agenda and the presentation slides for this training session will be posted on the website by 5:00 PM ET on Friday, February 2, 2024.

Please contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call toll-free at 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions.

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ICH CAHPS: When a sample patient calls a vendor’s toll-free hotline to complete the telephone survey
folder_openChanges to Protocols and Guidelinescalendar_todayPosted January 30, 2024

ICH CAHPS Survey sample patients will see their facility’s authorized survey vendor’s toll-free hotline in their prenotification letter (all modes), in their cover letter (mail-only and mixed mode), on their caller ID (phone-only and mixed mode), and/or on a poster/flyer in their dialysis facility (all modes). Sample patients are encouraged to call their vendor with questions, and sometimes may also call to complete the telephone interview at a time of their convenience.

We have recently been informed that some sample patients have tried to call their vendor’s hotline to complete the telephone survey, but have been told that their information will be passed on to the call center and they will be called back when possible, instead of being able to complete the survey right then. Facilities are concerned that by not being able to complete the telephone interview when they call the vendor, the sample patient will not complete the survey at all (whether it be that they don’t pick up the phone for unknown numbers when called back, they are in dialysis during the callback, they don’t feel well from dialysis when an interviewer calls back, etc.).

ICH CAHPS does not have a protocol that requires vendors to complete telephone interviews on the spot when a sample patient calls a vendor’s toll-free hotline. We know that this isn’t always possible for various logistical reasons. However, the Coordination Team and CMS also understand facilities’ concerns and how this may negatively affect their response rates, especially with this population and their limited availability due to their dialysis schedule. We encourage vendors to internally discuss this issue and any strategies that could be implemented at your organization to meet these sample patients’ unique requests.

Please contact the Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions or need more information about this issue.

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Reminder of Upcoming Deadline for Submitting Facility-Specific Questions for the 2024 ICH CAHPS Spring Survey for Approval
folder_openOther Announcementscalendar_todayPosted January 26, 2024

This is a reminder that ICH CAHPS Survey vendors must submit all facility-specific questions that they plan to add to the 2024 ICH CAHPS Spring Survey to the Coordination Team for review and approval. If any of your ICH facility clients are planning to add any new facility-specific questions to the 2024 ICH CAHPS Spring Survey, please send those questions and their proposed placement to the Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org before 5:00 PM ET on February 2, 2024.

Please note that facility-specific questions that were approved by the Coordination Team for use in previous survey periods do not need to be approved again unless the question wording or response options have changed. If changes have been made, please submit the changes by the February 2nd deadline.

The Coordination Team will accept facility-specific questions for review after the February 2, 2024 deadline; however, approval of those questions may not be granted in time for the questions to be included in the 2024 Spring Survey. Survey vendors should work with their client ICH facilities to decide on the use of new facility-specific questions and submit the questions to the Coordination Team as soon as possible to avoid a delay in approval.

Please contact the Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or by calling 1-888-245-8083 if you have any questions.

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Reminder: Only One Week before the Data Submission Deadline for the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey
folder_openData Submissionscalendar_todayPosted January 24, 2024

The deadline for submitting data files from the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey to the Data Center is at 5:00 PM Eastern Time on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, which is 1 week from today. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will not accept any data files after that date and time.

We strongly encourage vendors who have not submitted an XML file for any of their facility clients to begin submitting as soon as possible. Remember that vendors must submit their data files in time to correct and re-submit any files that do not pass the validation checks.

Please feel free to contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions or need help with data submissions.

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Reminder: Only 2 Weeks before the Data Submission Deadline for the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey
folder_openData Submissionscalendar_todayPosted January 17, 2024

As a reminder, the deadline for submitting data files from the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey to the Data Center is at 5:00 PM ET on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, which is only 2 weeks away. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will not accept any data files after that date and time.

We strongly encourage vendors to begin submitting XML files as soon as possible following the end of data collection. Remember that vendors should submit their data files in time for them to correct and re-submit any files that do not pass the validation checks.

Please feel free to contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions or need help with data submissions.

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ICH CAHPS Coordination Team Semi-Annual Review (CTSAR) Newsletter – January 2024 Edition
folder_openOther Announcementscalendar_todayPosted January 11, 2024

The ICH CAHPS Team has published the January 2024 edition of the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team Semi-Annual Review (CTSAR). As a reminder, this newsletter is a way to provide in-center hemodialysis (ICH) facilities and survey vendors with helpful ICH CAHPS information.

The CTSAR is posted on the ICH CAHPS website and updated every January and July. You can navigate to the January 2024 newsletter in the Quick Links box on the ICH CAHPS home page, under the General Information tab on the ICH CAHPS website, or you can click here to view it now.

The CTSAR does not replace any source of information currently on the ICH CAHPS website; instead, it highlights important information for readers prior to each survey period. We encourage you to visit the ICH CAHPS website for more information on the items mentioned in this newsletter. Please continue to monitor the ICH CAHPS website for updates and announcements.

Please contact the Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions or need more information.

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RTI International will be closed January 15, 2024
folder_openOther Announcementscalendar_todayPosted January 11, 2024

RTI International will be closed on January 15, 2024. The ICH CAHPS Coordination Team will respond to email and telephone inquiries that are received on that date after RTI re-opens on January 16, 2024.

Please contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team at 1-866-245-8083 or via email at ichcahps@rti.org if you have any questions.

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Reminder: Only 3 Weeks before the Data Submission Deadline for the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey
folder_openData Submissionscalendar_todayPosted January 10, 2024

As a reminder, data collection for the 2023 ICH CAHPS Fall Survey ends on Friday, January 12, 2024. The deadline for submitting data files from the 2023 Fall Survey to the Data Center is at 5:00 PM Eastern Time on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, which is only 3 weeks away. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will not accept any data files after that date and time.

As XML files are uploaded to the ICH CAHPS Data Center, a series of validation checks are made, one of which is a check to ensure that a patient-level record is included on the XML file for every case that was sampled for a CCN. Please note the following:

  • If the number of cases you include on an XML file does not match the number sampled, an error or warning message will appear on your data submission report.
  • If the error message appears for one or more of your CCNs, please make sure that you have entered information about each sampled case on the XML file.

Also be reminded that survey vendors:

  • should submit their files as soon as possible to allow adequate time to correct any problems identified and re-submit the files before the deadline; and
  • can submit a file for a CCN as many times as needed; however, keep in mind that each time a file for a CCN is re-submitted, it overwrites the file that was submitted previously.

Please feel free to contact the ICH CAHPS Coordination Team via email at ichcahps@rti.org or call 1-866-245-8083 if you have any questions or need help with data submissions.

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