IL-23 psoriasis study results, modifier 25 documentation webinar, the definition of value, and Zika update. View this email in your browser
Dermatology World Weekly
December 13, 2017
New psoriasis biologic meets its marks

According to a press release issued by AbbVie, risankizumab has met all co-primary and ranked secondary endpoints in a fourth phase 3 study of the drug as a treatment for patients with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis. Risankizumab is an IL-23 inhibitor that binds to the p19 subunit. About 47% of patients treated with risankizumab achieved PASI 100 at week 16 compared to 1% of placebo patients. At 52 weeks, 87% of patients treated with risankizumab achieved clear or almost clear skin (sPGA 0/1).

While biologics may be a boon for psoriasis patients, are they effective for patients with scalp psoriasis? Read more about scalp psoriasis and other conditions that can cause itchy scalp in this month’s issue of Dermatology World.

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Modifier 25 webinar registration closes today

The Academy will be holding a webinar on proper documentation when using modifier 25 today at 8 PM Central. The 30-minute webinar will be free to Academy members. Registration will close today at noon Central. To register, call the Academy at (866) 503-SKIN (7546).

The webinar is being held on the heels of the news that Anthem/Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield will be conducting post-service reviews of claims billed with modifier 25 in several states. Providers deemed as outliers will be contacted for additional documentation related to the services, and if a billing discrepancy is identified, Anthem/Empire has indicated that it will require “recoupments as appropriate.” Anthem has also announced that starting with claims processed on or after Jan. 1, the payer will be reducing reimbursement for modifier 25 in California, Connecticut, Kentucky, Maine, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Wisconsin. This policy will also be instituted in Missouri effective Feb. 1, and in Colorado, Indiana, and New York effective March 1.

Read more about the Academy’s efforts to advocate against this policy. Also, check out Dermatology World for more information on payers’ attempts to rein in modifier 25, and other payer policies.

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What does value mean? Depends on who you ask.

With the recent push for value-based care in the United States, researchers are asking, “What does value mean?” According to results from a recent survey ― conducted by the University of Utah and Leavitt Partners ― providers, patients, and employers have different definitions. Researchers surveyed 687 physicians, 5,031 patients, and 538 employers, and found that while 88% of physicians associate the term ‘value’ with quality care, 60% of employers indicated that cost is a key factor in defining value. Among the patients surveyed, 45% indicated that affordable out-of-pocket costs were a key component of value.

When it comes to value, many dermatologists have called for renewed efforts to develop broad-based value measurement to make sure dermatology has the data it needs to demonstrate its value to patients and payers. Read more about how broad-based measures help dermatologists demonstrate their value in Dermatology World.

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A Zika vaccine: On the way?

Takeda Pharmaceutical has announced that it will initiate a phase 1 trial of TAK-426 ― a whole-virus vaccine that will be tested for the mosquito-borne Zika virus. The company indicated that it expects results from the trial ― that will be conducted in the United States ― by next year. Read more about the trial. Microcephaly is one of the Zika-related abnormalities that public health officials have been warning patients about with the virus. However, there are other symptoms that may fall within the dermatologist’s purview. Learn more about the cutaneous manifestations of the Zika virus in Dermatology World’s Trending video series.

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Links to this month's issue

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