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Congratulations to Doug Schuweiler for receiving the Award for Excellence from the SBA-OIG!

Congratulations to Doug Schuweiler for receiving the Award for Excellence from the SBA-OIG!

We are ecstatic to announce Econometrica’s own Doug Schuweiler has won an Award for Excellence from the Small Business Administration Office of Inspector General (SBA-OIG).

The Award for Excellence is an annual award recognizing exceptional performance among OIG’s diverse, high-performing, and outcome-driven workforce.

Doug received the award for his work helping to increase the rate of hotline complaint closure by over 400% and climbing. He built a machine learning topic model to filter complaints based on subject. His model helped to address the massive increase in pandemic-related hotline complaints by cutting complaint processing time in half, increasing automation in the hotline review process, and helping the hotline team focus on the most pressing complaints needing immediate attention.

Please join us in congratulating Doug Schuweiler for receiving this great award and commending him on his innovative solution and technical excellence.

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Jacqueline Ryan

Communications Team Manager

Biden-Harris Administration Announces Efforts to End Hunger and Reduce Diet-Related Disease in U.S.

Biden-Harris Administration Announces Efforts to End Hunger and Reduce Diet-Related Disease in U.S.

In September, the Biden-Harris Administration released an $8 billion plan to confront the food insecurity and diet-related diseases afflicting many Americans—particularly among underserved communities like the elderly, the LGBTQ+ community, military families and veterans, communities of color, and rural areas.

Announced during the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health, the Administration’s strategy to combat these health issues includes both private- and public-sector efforts organized around five guiding pillars:

  • Pillar 1: Ensuring that everyone—including urban, suburban, rural, and Tribal communities and territories—has access to and can afford food. The administration will tackle hunger and food availability through various laws, credits, and strategies to end hunger by improving jobs recovery, lowering child poverty rates, reducing healthcare costs, and more.
  • Pillar 2: Integrating nutrition and health. The administration plans to include nutrition and food security when measuring overall health, including disease prevention and management, and to ensure that the needs of all people are addressed through the healthcare system.
  • Pillar 3: Creating an environment where all people can make informed, healthy food choices; have access to healthy food; and are encouraged in their schools or workplace to lead healthier lives. Educational campaigns will be developed to resonate with specific communities in a culturally appropriate way.
  • Pillar 4: Making physical activity easily accessible to all by increasing awareness of the benefits of physical activity and making safe places so that everyone can be physically active.
  • Pillar 5: Improving the research associated with nutrition and food security, with a focus on improving nutrition metrics, data collection, and research to help shape nutrition and food security policy, particularly around issues of equity, access, and disparities.

The Biden-Harris Administration is dedicated to ending hunger, improving nutrition, and promoting physical activity in the United States. You can read more about the Administration’s efforts in an online fact sheet:


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Kurt von Tish

Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Advanced (BPCI Advanced) Model

Bundled Payments for Care Improvement Advanced (BPCI Advanced) Model

Launched on October 1, 2018, the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI) Advanced Model tests whether the linking of payment for a clinical episode may improve care quality while reducing Medicare price.

This month, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a 2-year extension of the program, including a new opportunity for applications. Early in 2023, CMS plans to announce a request for application (RFA) to those eligible to participate in the extended years (2024–2025). For those participating in Model Year 6 and those who previously participated but are no longer active, there will be opportunity to apply for Model Year 7 (2024).

Other changes will be made to improve pricing methodology and encourage engagement among providers and suppliers, including:

  • The CMS discount for medical clinical episodes will be reduced from 3% to 2%.
  • The Peer Group Trend Factor Adjustment cap for all clinical episodes will be reduced from 10% to 5%.
  • Major joint replacement of the upper extremity (MJRUE) will be made a multi-setting clinical episode similar to the major joint replacement for the lower extremity (MJRLE) clinical episode.
  • Clinical episodes where beneficiaries are diagnosed with COVID-19 will no longer be excluded from the model.

As CMS continues to strive for better integration of primary and specialty care and cater to an increasingly complex population of beneficiaries, Econometrica is excited to continue our work supporting BPCI Advanced participants in understanding the model’s quality measure submission requirements and their performance in the model. To achieve equitable outcomes, integrated and coordinated care for beneficiaries is essential, and having a health system that is accountable, high-quality, affordable, and person-centered can help achieve that goal.

Please visit the following sites for detailed information on this topic:

Health Care Payment Learning and Action Network Summit on Nov. 9 and 10
Detailed Review for Model Extension and Changes for Model Year 6
Complete Fact Sheet for BPCI Advanced Model
More Detailed Information on BPCI Advanced

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Kurt von Tish

October is LBGTQ+ History Month

October is LBGTQ+ History Month

Celebrate LGBTQ+ History by remembering and honoring those who marched in Washington in October 1979 and 1987. October is LGBTQ+ History Month in the United States. Encourage learning about LGBTQ+ to boost openness and remove the stigma of being LGBTQ+.

To coincide with National Coming Out Day on October 11, Rodney Wilson, an opening gay teacher in Missouri, started the Lesbian and Gay History Month in 1994 and was the founder of the coordinating committee. We now know this month as LGBTQ+ History Month. Wilson decided on October in remembrance of those who marched in October 1979 and 1987 to ban sexual orientation discrimination in the military, federal workplace, and family protection laws.

Allies of the LGBTQ+ community such as Evelyn Hooker, a psychologist whose research disproved the notion of homosexuality being a mental illness, have contributed to the growing acceptance and understanding of the LGBTQ+ community. Her research was presented in 1956, but only recently is public perception siding with her findings.

All through October, participate in various LGBTQ+ celebrations. On the National Coming Out Day (October 11), support those who choose to come out and celebrate their courage. On October 17, celebrate International Pronouns Day by sharing the importance of pronouns and being open to gender identity conversations. For LGBTQ+ Spirit Day (October 20), be sure to wear purple to support LGBTQ+ youth – show solidarity to protect those who are more likely to be bullied because of their identities and help prevent heartbreak in parents of bullying-related suicides of LGBTQ+ students.

LGBTQ+ rights and acceptance have come a long way in recent years, but there is far more work to be done. Although the movement for LGBTQ+ rights started long ago, public acceptance to LGBTQ+ equality has been a slow endeavor. Take the time this October to enhearten those in the LGBTQ+ communities.

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Kurt von Tish

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

In 2022 alone, an estimated 287,500 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, with one woman being diagnosed every two minutes. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a great opportunity to highlight the importance of preventive measures and treatments for breast cancer to raise the survival rate of the disease.

Although strides in modern medicine have helped reduce deaths from breast cancer exponentially, numbers since 2020 remind us of the urgent work still needed to fight and spread awareness of the disease.

When breast cancer is diagnosed at the localized stage (i.e., the cancer has not spread outside the breast), the survival rate is 99 percent. However, only 65 percent of women are diagnosed at the local stage. Although it is one of the most common cancers in the world today, with about one in eight women getting the disease at some point in their lives, many women around the globe are not educated about mammograms or self-examinations to help diagnose the disease early.

During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, help raise awareness of this largely preventable disease by talking confidently about breast cancer, removing any stigma associated with speaking about breast health, and informing and educating those near you about preventable measures to ensure early diagnosis.

For more important information about Breast Cancer Awareness, please visit:







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Kurt von Tish