IHA Daily Briefing: March 12

March 12, 2018

Governor Signs Hospital Assessment Bills
Celebrate Patient Safety Awareness Week
Tomorrow: CMS Call on Low Volume Appeals Settlement
Register Now: Continuous Service Readiness Workshop
Briefly Noted

Governor Signs Hospital Assessment Bills
This morning at the James R. Thompson Center in Chicago, Governor Bruce Rauner signed legislation on the redesign of the Hospital Assessment Program (PA 100-0581) and on Medicaid managed care transparency and oversight (PA 100-0580). IHA President and CEO A.J. Wilhelmi and IHA Board of Trustees Chair Bill Santulli, executive vice president and chief operating officer, Advocate Health Care, and Anthony Guaccio, president and CEO, Swedish Covenant Hospital, attended the signing. Also on hand were Illinois Dept. of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) Director Felicia Norwood and members of the bipartisan Legislative Medicaid Work Group — Reps. Greg Harris (D-Chicago); Patti Bellock (R-Hinsdale); Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago); Robyn Gabel (D-Evanston); Ryan Spain (R-Peoria); and Sens. Heather Steans (D-Chicago) and Dave Syverson (R-Rockford).

In his remarks, Wilhelmi praised state leaders for their unity and support in passing this legislation. “On behalf of hospitals and health systems across the state, the Illinois Health and Hospital Association commends the Governor, the General Assembly including the Legislative Medicaid Work Group, and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services for taking action to continue and modernize the Hospital Assessment Program. This essential and vital program, which brings the State $3.5 billion annually, helps ensure that Medicaid beneficiaries and all patients in Illinois have access to the quality healthcare they need when they need it.”

Gov. Rauner also noted his support for the Hospital Assessment Program redesign and improvements to Medicaid managed care. “Our teams worked hard to make sure our most vulnerable citizens can continue to receive quality medical services and to keep hospitals in underserved communities,” Gov. Rauner said. “I’d like to thank all the legislators, state officials, and stakeholders who worked to restructure the program. Their unwavering dedication will help keep the Medicaid program sustainable for the future.”

HFS Director Norwood commented on the hard work of key collaborators, including IHA. “This bipartisan legislation took months of extensive negotiation, and could never have happened without the support of the Legislative Medicaid Work Group, and certainly not without the support of A.J. Wilhelmi and his team at IHA.”

The next step in the Hospital Assessment Program redesign process is to obtain federal approval from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The assessment legislation:

  • Modernizes the assessment program with payments based on updated patient utilization data, replacing current payments based on obsolete data from more than 10 years ago;
  • Preserves and rationalizes $850 million in Affordable Care Act funds that the State has secured and maximized for the past four years;
  • Moves more than $600 million from static, fixed payments to dynamic claim-based payments – so the “money follows the patient;”
  • Recognizes and incentivizes the shift to more outpatient services;
  • Includes a process and $263 million fund to assist hospitals in transforming and adjusting to changes in their environment, so they can continue to serve their communities;
  • Increases transparency and accountability on Medicaid managed care organization claims processing and payment performance; and
  • Sunsets after two years to serve as a checkpoint to evaluate the program’s effectiveness.

Celebrate Patient Safety Awareness Week
This week, the healthcare community observes Patient Safety Awareness Week, an initiative aimed at engaging healthcare professionals, patients and the public in increasing awareness of patient safety issues. On Friday, March 16 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. CT, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) will host a Twitter chat for governmental, advocacy and professional organizations and individuals to share questions, challenges and strategies to advance a safety culture in healthcare. Those interested can participate with the hashtag #PSAW18. Related resources, including ideas for engaging staff and patients, branded materials and more information on the initiative, are available on IHI’s event website and in its press release.

IHA’s Midwest Alliance for Patient Safety (MAPS) Patient Safety Organization (PSO) was formed to engage in patient safety activities that promote a patient-centered culture of safety by improving the quality of healthcare delivery in participating hospitals and other healthcare providers. Save the dates June 6 and 7 for The Joy Factor: Embracing Joy at Work to Improve Patient Safety and Ignite Passion and Productivity, the MAPS PSO annual workshop. Learn more about MAPS PSO.

Likewise, the Great Lakes Partners for Patients Hospital Improvement Innovation Network helps participating hospitals and health systems share solutions and implement innovations that prevent harm, save lives and lower healthcare costs. Read more about this unique quality improvement collaborative between IHA, the Michigan Health & Hospital Association and Wisconsin Hospital Association.

Tomorrow: CMS Call on Low Volume Appeals Settlement
On Feb. 5, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) began accepting Expressions of Interest for its Low Volume Appeals (LVA) settlement process. The LVA settlement option is for providers, physicians and suppliers that, as of Nov. 3, 2017, had fewer than 500 Medicare Part A and Part B appeals combined, with a per-claim billed amount of $9,000 or less. CMS staff is presenting an update call on the LVA settlement option tomorrow, March 13, from 12:30 – 2 p.m. CT. IHA members interested in participating in the call can register here. Additional information on the offer is available on the CMS website.

Register Now: Continuous Service Readiness Workshop
On March 21, IHA and Joint Commission Resources (JCR) invite clinicians and hospital professionals in compliance, quality improvement, patient safety, risk management, and operations to a one-day program focused on avoiding survey process pitfalls, implementing continuous readiness plans and more.

During Continuous Service Readiness (CSR) Workshop and Seminar, expert faculty from both JCR and The Joint Commission’s Standards Interpretation Group (SIG) will provide critical insights into:

  • The most frequently scored clinical issues and compliance strategies;
  • SIG requirements for at least one new standard;
  • Survey process pitfalls, including 2017 process change clarifications;
  • Leadership’s role in achieving organizational continuous accreditation readiness;
  • The role of high reliability and safety culture in continuous service readiness; and
  • Developing a continuous readiness plan that includes practical applications for leadership and frontline staff and managers.

Click here for the full agenda. Continuing education credits are available.

Hospitals and health systems subscribed to the CSR program can send up to three staff members at no charge. IHA members that do not subscribe to the CSR program may attend this workshop for a registration fee of $269 per person. Click here to register.

Briefly Noted
Tomorrow from 1 – 2:30 p.m., the Illinois Colorectal Cancer Roundtable will host Award Winners in Colorectal Cancer Screening, a webinar focused on the importance of early colorectal cancer detection and recommended screening methods. Click here for more information and to register.