Information Bulletin, November 1999


Internet Upload
SPARCS Changes
Future Bulletin Mailings
Countdown to the Millennium

Internet Upload

We would like to thank all those organizations that have been patient with us during our development period implementing the secured server Internet Upload, which is designed to completely replace PCMAIL. There will be a staged, but rapid, migration of current PCMAIL functions to the Internet Upload. Currently the Internet Upload supports data submissions in a test and production mode, and the return of associated edit reports and error files.

Our normal update process merges the monthly transactions created from each submission into yearly master files. This occurs during the first week of every month. The exception and audit reports associated with this monthly process will now be posted on the secured server for those facilities with HPN accounts. THEY WILL NO LONGER BE DISTRIBUTED TO PCMAIL ACCOUNTS.

Currently under development are the Internet Upload screens to enable facilities to receive and request a whole range of file maintenance reports for past and present submissions including: edit reports, error files, audit reports, exception summary reports, and detailed history reports.

We therefore strongly encourage all providers to get HPN accounts even if they do not currently intend to use the Internet Upload to submit SPARCS data. Please contact the SPARCS Administrative Unit to request your application forms today.

SPARCS Changes

Effective August 20, 1999, the SPARCS edit for procedure dates changed to allow these dates to occur up to, but not more than, three (3) days prior to the admission date. This was done to reconcile SPARCS edits with current payer requirements.

Future Bulletin Mailings

The Department of Health Communications Directory contains PCMAIL addresses that have been used in the past to electronically distribute information to SPARCS Reviewer and Submitter contacts, i.e. the SPARCS Bulletins. In the future all electronically distributed information will use a newly created Electronic Distribution List populated with e-mail addresses YOU provide. Anyone wishing to be on this list should send an e-mail to the SPARCS Administrative Unit at sparcs.submissions@health.ny.gov.

Countdown to the Millennium

The clock has just struck eleven, and we still have facilities sending us data in the Version 4 (non-millennium-ready) format. Just a reminder that after December 31, 1999, SPARCS will ONLY accept Version 5 (millennium-ready) formatted files. If you anticipate a problem submitting Year 2000 compliant data to SPARCS after the end of December, we urge you to contact the SPARCS Administrative Unit as soon as possible.