Annual Conference

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2017 PACSTX Annual Conference

Put your superhero cape on and fly over to the 2017 PACSTX Conference! This conference serves as an exchange of ideas, information, and technology with key decision makers related to supporting individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. It is a great opportunity to network with other providers from around the state to share information and ideas. All of the breakout sessions and key note speeches are designed to give you new and innovative information on life enrichment, medical issues and business aspects of the industry, as well as provide updates on regulatory issues. There will be many exhibitors from around the state who are ready to show you the tools you need to be successful.

Conference Details:

Date: September 13-15, 2017
Location: Hilton Fort Worth
City: Fort Worth, Texas
Room Rate: $165 single/double room rate
Reservations: 1-800-HILTONS and mention “Providers Alliance for Community Services of Texas” to receive the special room rate 
*Room nights available Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights*

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Registration Costs:  

  Before 8/31/2016 After 8/31/2016
PACSTX Members $250 $275
Non-Members $300 $325
3 or more people from the same company $225 each  $245 each 
One Day Only $125 $135

Registration Includes:

  • All Conference Events
  • Access to exhibit hall offering solutions for providers
  • 2 General sessions
  • Thursday Breakfast and Lunch, Friday Breakfast, and breaks each day
  • Opportunity to connect with provider professionals who work with individuals with IDD

Conference Schedule:

Wednesday, September 13      
Time Track Speaker Description
1:00-1:30 Welcome/Member Meeting Mason Morgan, PACSTX President  
1:30-2:30 Opening Keynote:

National Trends Disabilities

Diane McComb, ANCOR Wondering where the field of disabilities is headed in the next few years? With states moving to a managed care model, now coupled with the changes occurring at the federal level, the only predictable constant is that of continued change and reduction in funding for services and supports.   Participants in this session will receive an overview where services and supports for people with disabilities are likely headed during the next several years.  The presentation will tie together information around national demographics, changes within Medicaid, the effects of the recession on state governments, Federal Healthcare Reform, and the desires of people with disabilities and their families.  Join Diane McComb, Liaison to State Associations for the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) for a contemporary look at the latest trends in the field of disabilities.
2:30 – 2:45 Break    
2:45 – 3:45 Breakouts    
Breakout Session Engaging Your Powers Within: Supporting Persons with Challenging Behaviors Dr. Laura Golden, ORT, OTD and Lacey Eaton, MAPC,LPC-I  This presentation will focus on the biopsychosocial model and what to take into consideration when someone is exhibiting challenging behaviors.  It will address strategies to use when dealing with challenging behavior through some therapeutic, sensory, and recreational interventions.
Breakout Session Continuing to Build the Plane While Flying Diane McComb, ANCOR States are continuing to move to managed long term services and supports (MLTSS) for people with disabilities pioneering a funding vehicle no one has built or driven before.  While states, CMS, and managed care entities know something about managed care for medical services, none of them knows how to create and implement long term services and supports for people with disabilities under a managed care rubric.  Providers of LTSS to people with disabilities hold the key to creating successful, accountable, and visionary efforts in states implementing managed care frameworks.  States are compelled to re-design the way they support Medicaid beneficiaries to provide the right services in the amount and duration needed, for the lowest cost — including supports critical to people with disabilities.  Providers and people with disabilities understand person centeredness, self-direction, care coordination and meaningful outcomes in ways others don’t.  Diane McComb, ANCOR Liaison to State Associations, will present this session providing participants with a current trending analysis of managed long term services and supports across the country. 
Breakout Session Finding the Right Superhero for the Job  Speaker To Be Announced This session will present ideas, tools and samples to address the difficult process of not only hiring the right person for the job, but retaining the right person too!  With compounding competition in the work place for qualified, dedicated and loyal employees at all levels, organizations have to be more strategic than ever before in hiring and retaining the right person for the job.  In this session, attendees will learn to:
– understand the dynamics of the job to be filled
– decide where and how the job can be marketed to solicit candidates
 – prepare appropriate interview questions
– build rapport with the applicant to reduce the stress of the interview process and allow more open responses
– valuate candidates to include all the necessary screening, background and reference checks to select the right person for the job 
– understand the consequences and liabilities of improper hiring
– develop retention strategies for retention at all levels of the workforce
 Attendees will earn prizes for participation, like sharing marketing and retention ideas with the group.  This session will be a lively and interactive session that attendees will not want to miss!! 
3:45- 4:00 Break    
4:00 – 5:00 Breakouts    
Breakout Session HHS Employment First and Employment Support Activities Monty Chamberland, HHSC, Donnie Wilson, HHSC  When the goal of integrated employment has been established, there are a number of key supports involved, from Employment Assistance, Supported Employment (EA & SE) as well as supporting employers.  This session will provide an informative overview of HHS’ Employment First efforts with updates on the Employment Recruitment Coordinator project’s work with employers, Local Authorities and providers across the state, billing rates for EA & SE, service provider qualifications for EA & SE, and the roles of various parties in the employment process
Breakout Session Good vs. Evil: Legislative Update Doug Svein, The Company of Rock House, Heather Vasek, PACSTX Lobbyist, Delisi Communications and Sandra Frizzell, PACSTX  PACSTX Legislative Committee Chair Doug Svien, along with Heather Vasek, and Sandy Frizzell will discuss the travails of the 2017 Legislative Session, including the outcomes in the state budget, and legislation affecting individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The panel will also discuss potential initiatives in preparation for the 2019 Legislative Session.
Breakout Session The Philosophical Shift to Person-Centered Practices: You Can Teach an Old Dog New Tricks! Debbie Little Smith, HCRST Change is difficult, especially if it involves a shift in power and control. Join us on the journey of letting go of past practices and looking to our furry, four-legged friends to help us develop attitudes and skills  that contribute to a satisfying, productive and meaningful future!
Thursday, September 14      
Time Track Speaker Description
8:30 – 9:30 am Grab your mask and your cape, it’s time to celebrate! Superhero Breakfast with Exhibitors     Join us for breakfast with our exhibitors and wear your favorite superhero costume. The attendee voted most SUPER will win a prize!
9:30 – 10:30  Breakouts    
Breakout Session Relationships and Sex Education: Rights vs. Risks Dr. Michelle Garcia, Psy. D    Session Description Coming Soon!
Breakout Session Get your Hulk on-Fitness Tips for the IDD Population  Ashley Robinson, Certified Fitness Instructor  Exercise is a vital component of a healthy lifestyle. All adults are encouraged by the WHO to get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week in addition to muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days per week. Why is exercise so important?  For starters, exercise contributes to a healthier body composition and image. Aside from physical appearance, exercise provides a wealth of benefits to your health and independence. Examples include: reduced stress, increased efficiency of the heart, reduced harmful LDL cholesterol and increased good HDL cholesterol, reduced body fat, improved cardiovascular levels, decreased risk of heart disease/stroke and opportunities for social interaction, to name a few. People of all abilities should have the opportunity to exercise and to participate in fitness activities. For individuals with disabilities, fitness opportunities can be limited because of the accommodations that are necessary to be able to use certain equipment. Do the individuals you support in the community have access to accessible fitness centers?  Urban areas offer a multitude of fitness and activity centers with most striving to be accessible to all persons.  How can you help the persons you support to incorporate more fitness and activity into their routines?  The most common barriers to fitness for persons with IDD are cost, transportation, and adequate instructional assistance.  What can you do as an agency or as a care provider to promote fitness and activity?  To overcome barriers?  Attendees will learn about accessing fitness opportunities in urban and rural areas, overcoming barriers and developing fitness plans for all.  For individuals residing in rural areas, the specifics of the “Get FIT Texas” program will be discussed in detail.  
Breakout Session Creating a SUPER Day  Tom Pomeranz, Ed.D., Universal LifeStiles, LLC In this two-part Plenary session, Tom will identify in Part One the challenges and impediments to implementing this transition from site-based Day Supports to community integrated supports.  Part Two will address creative approaches for utilizing the limited resources available (e.g. financial, staff limitations, transportation) to facilitate this transition.  Further, Tom will explain how change can instigate resistance at all organizational levels and amongst families and what specific actions can be taken to address this. Tom will discuss that meeting these new legal and regulatory requirements is not the most important reason for change.  The most important reason is our mission to provide supports and services that improve the quality of life of people with intellectual and other developmental disabilities as they become valued and respected members of their communities.
10:30-10:45 Break     
10:45 – 11:45  Breakouts    
Breakout Session Saving the Day:  Medicaid Allowable Options to Save Funds Kyle Piccola, Haley Greer, The Arc of Texas Planning for the future is never easy and planning for right now sometimes harder.  Learn how an individual and their families can save money while still keeping benefits.   We will discuss the basics of SNTs and ABLE accounts so that individuals, families and others can learn how to stay under the asset limit, save money and still keep their much needed benefits.   Over the asset limit every month?  ABLE accounts and SNTs can help.  Where can a family leave money to their loved one after their passing?  What happens if someone gets money and they need a place to put it? SNTs can be a great option.  All individuals with disabilities may benefit from either SNTs or ABLE accounts.  Come learn more!
Breakout Session Creating a SUPER Day – Part 2 Tom Pomeranz, Ed.D., Universal LifeStiles, LLC In this two-part Plenary session, Tom will identify in Part One the challenges and impediments to implementing this transition from site-based Day Supports to community integrated supports.  Part Two will address creative approaches for utilizing the limited resources available (e.g. financial, staff limitations, transportation) to facilitate this transition.  Further, Tom will explain how change can instigate resistance at all organizational levels and amongst families and what specific actions can be taken to address this. Tom will discuss that meeting these new legal and regulatory requirements is not the most important reason for change.  The most important reason is our mission to provide supports and services that improve the quality of life of people with intellectual and other developmental disabilities as they become valued and respected members of their communities.
Breakout Session Battling the Evils of a Leaky Gut Dr. Ginger Schirmer, PhD, RD The term Leaky Gut Syndrome is used to describe the condition of “Hyperpermeable Intestines,” a term that means the intestinal lining has became more porous, with more holes developing that are larger in size and the screening out process is no longer functioning properly. The change in permeability results in the “bad stuff” (yeast, toxins, and all other forms of waste) that your body normally doesn’t allow through, to flow freely into your bloodstream. The result of this change in permeability status of the gut is now being explored in its relationship to diseases such as degenerative changes, autoimmune disease and gastrointestinal disorders.
11:45-12:55 Lunch- Honoring Our Own Superheroes    
1:00-2:00  Breakouts    
Breakout Session Provider Services Update Kathy Griffith, DayBreak Provider Services Committee conference calls have been invaluable in keeping PACTSX members up to date across so many provider services topics.  Kathy Griffith does an incredible job summarizing important provider services information in writing and on conference calls for members.  This session will be an in person version of the Provider Services Committee conference calls.  Updates will focus on: DADS transition into HHSC, regulatory leadership changes, HCS Waiver Survey & Certification issues, rule changes, new rules, ICF vacancy issues, HCS/Texas Home Living enrollments, the future transition of IDD services into managed careany other relevant up-dates that may be in progress at the time of the presentation.  This session will prove to be very informative
Breakout Session Total Annihilation…Say Goodbye to Bed Bugs Bruce Frette –  Arrow Exterminators  We all fall in two categories:  have had to deal with or will have to deal with bedbugs.  These pesky critters affect every economic class and every community.  Staff and persons with IDD alike are at risk for bedbugs.  Are you prepared?  What is your organization’s bedbug plan?    The audience will learn from this session:
– the biology of the bedbug;
– why bedbugs have become so common;
– health and safety requirements for pest control;
– health concerns related to a bedbug infestation;
– the costs associated with a bedbug infestation;
– the importance of training all staff and persons with IDD about bedbugs;
– prevention strategies;
– identification protocols; and
– treatment options.
The goal of the presenter is to ensure the audience leaves this session armed with the information and resources needed to put an organizational plan in place to address bedbugs before and if these uninvited guests show up in community homes.   Sleep tight and don’t let the bedbugs bite!   
Breakout Session Prevention of Abuse and Neglect: A Higher Standard Tom Pomeranz, Ed.D., Universal LifeStiles, LLC In these two part riveting and provocative concurrent sessions, Tom Pomeranz makes it clear that treating those we support with dignity and respect is the ultimate deterrent. Particular emphasis is given to the causes of anger and its consequences.  Tom provides participants with specific strategies to manage anger. Left unchecked, anger can only give rise to abusive and neglectful interaction.  Tom provides participants with specific ways of behaving that deter abuse and neglect – that remove the ‘de.’ 
2:00-2:45 Break- Dessert with exhibitors    
2:45-3:45 Breakouts    
Breakout Session Enhanced SUPERvision in Residential Settings Brian Ketay, South Texas Community Living It is impossible for management to be in all residential community homes every day.  But in providing quality residential services, provider management and program staff must to be constantly monitoring services in residential settings.  Program reimbursement rates do not afford providers the funding to have the physical presence of management and program staff in residential settings on a daily basis.  But to comply with the regulations, monitoring residential services is a daily priority.  How can this be accomplished within the reimbursement rates?  What systems, including technological systems, can be implemented to enhance the SUPERvision in residential settings to provide the needed monitoring within the means of the program structure and reimbursement?  Participants will learn about monitoring systems, including technological systems, which can be incorporated into the daily management of residential settings to provide enhanced SUPERvision of residential settings.    
Business Track Don’t Wait for the Happy Bus, It Might Not Stop!  Sid Hurlbert, Professional Training & Coaching Consultant In the IDD industry, the reimbursement rates are ever shrinking.  The rules are ever changing.  This can lead to a stressful and challenging work environment.  Ultimately this can lead to increased turnover in staff that perpetuates the on-going cycle of stress and challenges.  Providers, self-advocates and families cannot control the reimbursement rates or the rules.  What can we do?  We can focus on what we do have control over.  And that is our attitude!  Improve morale and customer service in just 5 “STEPS”! 
Breakout Session Prevention of Abuse and Neglect: A Higher Standard- Part 2 Tom Pomeranz, Ed.D., Universal LifeStiles, LLC In these two part riveting and provocative concurrent sessions, Tom Pomeranz makes it clear that treating those we support with dignity and respect is the ultimate deterrent. Particular emphasis is given to the causes of anger and its consequences.  Tom provides participants with specific strategies to manage anger. Left unchecked, anger can only give rise to abusive and neglectful interaction.  Tom provides participants with specific ways of behaving that deter abuse and neglect – that remove the ‘de.’ 
3:45- 4:00  Break    
4:00 – 5:00 Breakouts    
Breakout Session Ask the Experts: Nursing Billing Panel Brian Ketay, South Texas Community Living, Patty Ritter, RN, Advantage Behavioral Services, Kathy Griffith, DayBreak Please join our expert panel to hear an extensive discussion of the challenges, opportunities and often missed opportunities for nursing billing.  The panel will review the BON nursing rules, waiver nursing rules and the waiver nursing billing guidelines.  The panel of experts will each discuss how their organizations manage the labor costs for nurses as compared to the nursing billing.  Each presenter will share examples of management techniques to improve nursing billing outcomes.  Presenters with also discuss: 
– nursing IP’s and justifications
– various organizational systems that can provide checks and balances
– filing/archiving
– how to make it easier to pull records for an audit
– avoiding recoupment for nursing services
Breakout Session Don’t Wait for the Happy Bus, It Might Not Stop! – Part 2 Sid Hurlbert, Professional Training & Coaching Consultant In part two of Mr. Hurlbert’s presentation he will continue the discussion on the 5 STEPS to improve morale and customer service.  
Breakout Session Protecting Medicaid Eligibility HHSC Staff HHSC Medicaid eligibility staff will review the most common issues faced by providers assisting individuals and families in maintaining Medicaid eligibility, best practices for addressing issues as they occur, and state initiatives in development to assist individuals, families, and providers with eligibility maintenance. HHSC staff will also make time to work one-on-one with attendees on outstanding Medicaid eligibility cases. To get the most out of the session, please bring an encrypted flash drive with your outstanding cases (over 45 days).
5:00 – 6:00  Cocktail Mixer with CEOs and Exhibitors (Invite Only)     
6-7:30 Reception, Live Auction    
Friday, September 15      
9:00 – 10:15 Closing Keynote- A Check Up from the Neck Up Carl Smith, The Kevin Eikenberry Group  It’s happened to us all – both in our personal life and in the workplace. Whether it was a disgruntled community client’s family member, an overbearing boss or an indifferent team member who is failing to complete daily tasks – there are endless challenges that make getting anything done next to impossible! You attempt to communicate successfully and unfortunately, emotions flare, conflict arises, and you feel yourself spiraling out of control.
10:15 – 10:45 Break – Conference Grand Prize Winner    
10:45-12:00 Breakouts    
Breakout Session Quality Versus Quantity – A Closer Look at Services Rashida Broussard, Waiver S&C PM  An Overview of the Home and Community Based Services (HCS) and Texas Home Living (TxHmL) waiver programs.  Clarifying roles/responsibilities for the family, provider and the Department of Aging and Disabilities Services Regulatory department during the survey process.  Discussing the new quality assurance process and best practices to ensure consistency across the state.  Revealing trends and most commonly cited citations in the program.  Empowering individuals and providers with their rights.
Breakout Session Empowering Others Through Building Trust Carl Smith, The Kevin Eikenberry Group  How many times have you encountered individuals that do the minimum or don’t even take personal responsibility in what needs to get done? In this powerful, interactive session, you will learn timeless principles to help build trust within your team – trust that creates a motivating atmosphere that provides your team with a common sense of direction, and collaboration, resulting in higher productivity and better-quality results.
Breakout Session Superheroes in Our Midst:  Nurses!!! Patty Ritter, RN, Advantage Behavioral Services Most of us are lucky if we spend ten minutes with our physician during a scheduled medical appointment.  If we even see our physician as PA’s are performing the majority of direct outpatient care today.  With the IDD population, this is a truth as well.  Often times the key to wellness for individuals with IDD in community programs, is the preventative nursing support and care individuals receive.  Nurses are often the heroes in our midst in resolving complex medical issues.  Nurses can take the time needed to truly research medical history, current diagnoses and complete thorough assessments in developing nursing plans for care and to assist physicians and PA’s in providing treatment as well.  This session is for nurses and program staff.  Nurses are crucial to individual wellness in community programs, especially for individuals with complex, fragile medical needs.