IHA Daily Briefing: Feb. 12

Monday, February 12, 2018

IHA Releases 2018 State Advocacy Agenda
President Releases Budget Blueprint
Submit an IHA Quality Showcase Project This Week
IHA Update on Behavioral Health Notices
Senior Executive Compensation Survey Offered

IHA Releases 2018 State Advocacy Agenda
With tremendous focus on Springfield this week, IHA is releasing our 2018 State Advocacy AgendaAdvancing Health in Illinois—for hospital and health system leaders to use in advocacy outreach efforts throughout the Spring Legislative Session.

The agenda was developed from the 2018 strategic priorities hospital and health system leaders identified during summer and fall member meetings last year. We are asking the state’s legislative and executive branches to:

  • Ensure adequate funding from the state;
  • Preserve federal funding for the state;
  • Ensure access to care and critical services;
  • Promote transparency, care coordination and performance improvement in Medicaid Managed Care Organizations; and
  • Promote healthcare quality and safety.

Together, IHA and the hospital community must leverage our strong, collective voice to ensure that hospitals have the resources to provide quality care and explore innovative ways to improve care and reduce costs.

There’s still time to register for IHA’s Legislative Reception tomorrow, Feb. 13, from 5-8 p.m. at Arlington’s in Springfield. The Governor’s Budget Address is scheduled for Wednesday.

President Releases Budget Blueprint
Today, Present Trump sent his fiscal year (FY) 2019 budget blueprint to Congress. It comes just days after he signed into law a bipartisan budget agreement passed by Congress that increased federal spending caps for FY 2018 and 2019 by nearly $300 billion. The President’s $4.4 trillion budget request is likely to see little action in Congress, but it outlines the Administration’s priorities and serves as a resource for legislators as they develop policy and funding priorities.

The President’s budget proposal requests $68.4 billion for the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS), a 21 percent decrease from the 2017 enacted funding level. The budget supports a two-part approach to repeal and replace the Affordably Care Act (ACA) by enacting legislation modeled on the Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson legislation from 2017. The first part of that proposed legislation included nearly a one trillion-dollar reduction to the Medicaid program and converted it to a per capita funding system. The second part of the approach would be to enact additional reforms to enhance state flexibility in the ACA marketplace.

Regarding Medicaid, in addition to the reforms proposed in the Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson legislation, the budget would give states additional flexibility to implement cost-sharing requirements for Medicaid beneficiaries, and would allow states to consider savings and other assets to determine eligibility for Medicaid benefits.

“The President’s budget makes investments and reforms that are vital to making our health and human services programs work for Americans and to sustaining them for future generations,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar in a statement following the release of the budget blueprint. “In particular, it supports our four priorities here at HHS: addressing the opioid crisis, bringing down the high price of prescription drugs, increasing the affordability and accessibility of health insurance, and improving Medicare in ways that push our health system toward paying for value rather than volume.”

The Administration outlined its strategy to address the rising cost of drug prices, a top priority for the President this year, including:

  • Modifying hospitals’ payments for drugs acquired through the 340B drug pricing program by paying more to hospitals that provide charity care and reducing payments to hospitals that provide little to no charity care;
  • Providing Medicaid demonstration authority for up to five states to test drug coverage and financing reforms;
  • Providing flexibility to the Food and Drug Administration to bring generic drugs to market faster by incentivizing more competition among generic manufacturers; and
  • Modifying payments for Part B drugs to discourage manufacturers from increasing prices faster than inflation;

The budget also includes $5 billion over five years for new resources to combat the opioid epidemic—another Administration priority—including $500 million for states to address the issue.

See the HHS FY 2019 budget-in-brief.

Submit an IHA Quality Showcase Project This Week
Make sure your hospital or health system is represented at IHA's third annual Quality Advocacy Showcase in the Illinois State Capitol on Thursday, April 12. Submit a quality improvement project from your organization by the end of this week.

We're looking to build on the excitement and engagement of last year's showcase with an even bigger turnout this year. For the showcase, IHA will produce one professionally designed 30-by-42-inch poster per facility at no cost to members.

The showcase is designed to highlight the role of Illinois hospitals and health systems in advancing care while reducing costs, and is an important part of IHA's advocacy efforts. Our goal is to fill the rotunda with posters of projects from across the state and create opportunities for you to engage with legislators.

Encourage your organization's quality leaders or public relations professionals to submit a project before this Friday's deadline.

IHA Update on Behavioral Health Notices
IHA last week distributed to members summaries of recent behavioral health notices of interest to hospitals. Among the updates are:

  • Public Act 100-306 (House Bill 2762), effective Jan. 1, amends the Hospital Licensing Act and University of Illinois Hospital Act to prohibit hospitals from maintaining a list of individuals who may not be admitted for treatment at the hospital;
  • The Illinois Dept. of Healthcare and Family Services released notices on an enhanced payment extension for services provided within licensed community mental health centers, telehealth originating site requirement changes and inpatient payment for children's mental health services;
  • IHA, Illinois Psychiatric Society and American Psychiatric Association released a new poster providing consumers, providers and healthcare facilities guidance on fair insurance coverage under federal mental health and addiction coverage parity laws;
  • Effective Feb. 2, all Illinois Dept. of Human Service (DHS)-Division of Mental Health Notice of Funding Opportunities for State Fiscal Year 2019 are posted on the Division website;
  • On Dec. 5, Governor Bruce Rauner announced a new toll-free, statewide helpline (833-2FINDHELP) to provide a confidential outlet for individuals experiencing opioid use disorders, their families and anyone affected by the disease 24 hours a day, seven days a week;
  • In December, DHS released a communication alert that defined the differences between a Certified Recovery Support Specialist and the recently developed Certified Peer Recover Specialist in Illinois; and
  • On Jan. 3, the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration finalized a rule to make it easier for healthcare providers to disclose substance use disorder records.

For more information, see IHA's memo.

Senior Executive Compensation Survey Offered
IHA's affiliate, IHA Human Capital Services (IHA HCS), is again partnering with Sullivan, Cotter and Associates, Inc. (SullivanCotter) to offer the 2018 Senior Executive Compensation Survey of Illinois Healthcare Organizations (formerly Senior Executive Compensation Survey of Chicago-Area Healthcare Organizations).

This survey collects total compensation data on the following Senior Executive positions:

  • President and Chief Executive Officer;
  • Chief Financial Officer;
  • Chief Operating Officer;
  • Chief Information Officer;
  • Chief Medical Officer;
  • Chief Nursing Officer;
  • Top Human Resources Executive;
  • Top Legal Services Executive (General Counsel); and
  • Top Patient Care Executive.

Reports will include a Chicago-area or Northeastern Illinois breakdown and an all-Illinois breakdown (at a minimum). If participation allows, a Southern Illinois breakdown and a net revenue report will be available. Submission levels and participant characteristics will be reviewed in order to determine appropriate reporting segments. Participation in the 2017 survey included over 80 Illinois healthcare facilities, so we are optimistic that these report segments will be available again for 2018.

Survey data is collected via SullivanCotter's national Manager and Executive Compensation in Hospitals and Health Systems Survey. SullivanCotter will collect, analyze and maintain the survey data, all of which will be held in strict confidence.

If you wish to participate in the Senior Executive Compensation Survey of Illinois Healthcare Organizations, please return the participation agreement to Maritza Medrano by Feb. 28. The survey submission deadline is March 30. Invoices will be sent upon publication and delivery of survey reports.

IHA Small & Rural Hospitals Executive Compensation Survey Participants—the next edition of the Small & Rural Hospitals survey is planned for 2019. However, the SullivanCotter survey may be a good opportunity for you to participate in a broader study, including a national survey.