IHA Daily Briefing: Nov. 16

Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022
IHA, ICAHN Recognize Illinois’ Rural Hospitals
IDPH Hospital Webinar on Respiratory Viral Surge
Register: Antibiotic Stewardship Webinar Series
FDA Action to Facilitate Expanded Naloxone Access
Illinois COVID-19 Data
Briefly Noted


IHA, ICAHN Recognize Illinois’ Rural Hospitals
With National Rural Health Day tomorrow, Nov. 17, IHA President and CEO A.J. Wilhelmi and Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network (ICAHN) Executive Director Pat Schou have authored an op-ed and issued a news release to media statewide, celebrating the day and recognizing Illinois’ rural hospitals. They acknowledged Illinois’ rural hospital community for their tireless efforts to provide high-quality care to their patients and address healthcare challenges facing rural communities across the state.

“IHA and ICAHN are proud to represent Illinois’ rural hospitals and thank our healthcare heroes for the incredible impact they are making in the lives of their patients,” Wilhelmi said. “Illinois’ rural hospitals are embedded in the fabric of their communities and are continuously looking for ways to expand access to healthcare, offer new services, and improve the health and overall well-being of their neighbors.”

IHA and ICAHN also shared examples of some of the great work Illinois’ rural hospitals are doing to make a positive impact on their patients and the communities they serve. To see examples, click here.

“ICAHN is proud to partner with IHA to celebrate all the many accomplishments and innovations our member hospitals have created or enhanced to make rural healthcare even better. Sparta Community Hospital and Lincoln Memorial Hospital are two of 58 critical access and small, rural hospitals in our membership that should be lauded for their efforts to make their communities healthier,” Schou said.

To access IHA’s backgrounder on Illinois’ small and rural hospitals, click here. For more information about National Rural Health Day, click here.


IDPH Hospital Webinar on Respiratory Viral Surge
The Illinois Dept. of Public Health (IDPH) has scheduled a Nov. 21 webinar intended to help Illinois hospitals and healthcare providers prepare for a fall respiratory viral surge. The webinar will be presented by Dr. Arti Barnes, IDPH Chief Medical Officer, and Ashley Thoele, IDPH Deputy Chief Operating Office.

The webinar will focus on:

  • IDPH’s evolving role of support for healthcare providers this season vs. last season.

  • Tools available to hospitals dealing with surges.

  • Maximizing telehealth and tele-triage services to decrease the need for hospitalizations and emergency department boarding.

  • Prevention efforts and keeping patients out of the hospital, including:

    • Infection prevention

    • Therapeutics

    • Vaccination

Click here to register for the webinar, which will take place Monday, Nov. 21 from noon to 1 p.m. Registration questions can be directed to David.hale-arroyo@illinois.gov.


Register: Antibiotic Stewardship Webinar Series
Outpatient and ambulatory care providers are invited to participate in an Antibiotic Stewardship Webinar Series hosted by the Hektoen Institute. A notice sent by the Illinois Dept. of Public Health (IDPH) said the webinars will focus on implementing robust antibiotic stewardship programs in healthcare facilities to fight the spread of antibiotic resistance. These webinars are free to attend. Up to one hour of continuing education credit will be offered for each webinar.

Webinar 1: Action for Policy and Practice
Thursday, Nov. 17, 1 p.m.
Click here to register.
Speaker: Dr. Richard Ginnetti, MBA, CPE, OSF HealthCare, Peoria

Webinar 2: Tracking and Reporting
Thursday, Nov. 22, 1 p.m.
Click here to register.
Speaker: Lindsey Westerhof, PharmD, BCACP, Mercy Health Saint Mary’s, Grand Rapids, Mich.

Webinar 3: Education and Expertise
Friday, Dec. 2, 1 p.m.
Click here to register.
Speaker: Jeremy Tigh, PharmD and Dr. Mackenzie Keintz, Nebraska Medicine, Omaha

Addressing antibiotic prescribing is a key focus of IHA’s Institute for Innovations in Care and Quality, which is advancing person-centered healthcare in Illinois through evidence-based quality and safety initiatives to measurably strengthen quality healthcare. Visit IHA’s Healthcare Innovation Hub and download the Antibiotic Stewardship Program playbook to learn about how a hospital in Chicago utilized an innovative approach to implement an antibiotic stewardship program that improved antibiotic prescribing practices in the hospital.

For questions about the Institute’s programs and resources please contact us.


FDA Action to Facilitate Expanded Naloxone Access
In support of an ongoing national effort to reduce opioid overdose deaths by expanding access to naloxone drug products, on Tuesday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a Federal Register notice intended to help facilitate the development and approval of over-the-counter naloxone nasal sprays and autoinjectors. This would include switching certain naloxone drug products from prescription status to nonprescription status.

Expanding naloxone access is considered critical to combatting the opioid overdose crisis, as the drug can counter overdose effects when administered within the first minutes of the first signs of an opioid overdose.

It’s important to note that this FDA notice is not a final determination that certain naloxone drug products are safe and effective for nonprescription use. The FDA says the notice, “is intended to facilitate development and approval of nonprescription naloxone products,” while further emphasizing in a media statement that more data is needed to make a definitive conclusion about over-the-counter use of naloxone.

To assist in that effort, the FDA is encouraging public comments on the notice, specifically the preliminary assessment on the safety of changing the prescription status of naloxone in the near future. Electronic, public comments must be submitted by Jan. 17, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. ET by clicking here. Written comments must be submitted to the following address: Mail/Hand Delivery/Courier (for written/paper submissions): Dockets Management Staff (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852. Click here for additional submission guidance, including confidential submissions.

The opioid crisis was declared a public health emergency in 2017, and that declaration has been renewed every 90 days. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data show overdose deaths involving opioids increased from an estimated 70,029 in 2020 to more than 80,800 in 2021.

A news conference yesterday in Chicago highlighted data from the Cook County medical examiner’s office and the Chicago Dept. of Public Health that, according to Chicago media, show that opioid-related deaths in Chicago are on pace to match 2021, when a record 1,428 people in the city died due to an opioid-related overdose. Through June of this year there have been 632 opioid-related deaths recorded in Chicago, Chicago officials reported.


Illinois COVID-19 Data
To access updated Illinois COVID-19 data on daily case numbers, testing outcomes and deaths, click here. Hospitalization data, including the number of patients in the ICU and patients on ventilators, can be accessed by clicking here. The most recent COVID-19 vaccination data can be found by clicking here. The Illinois Dept. of Public Health (IDPH) updates its COVID-19 data at 1 p.m. Monday – Friday.

COVID-19 hospitalizations are rising among babies under 6 months old, prompting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to urge mothers to get vaccinated to reduce risk of infecting infants who are not eligible for shots. A CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published last week shows that for most of the past year, infants under 6 months have had higher COVID-19 hospitalization rates than older children or adults ages 18 to 64. In recent months, the hospitalization rate for the youngest infants even exceeded that of seniors 65 to 74.


Briefly Noted
Job openings at Not-for-Profit (NFP) hospitals are at an all-time high as staff shortages persist, according to an update yesterday from Fitch Ratings that was based on Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Fitch said, “Health care and social assistance job openings increased by 115,000 to an all-time high of 9.2% as of September. However, the number of quits in the health care and social assistance sector is still high at 2.5% in September with little change in the hires rate.” Fitch Director Richard Park underscored that, “Hospital staff shortages are a predicament that could worsen come the winter months if COVID infection rates increase again.”

The White House monkeypox response team will hold a briefing with public health officials on Friday, Nov. 18 at 1 p.m. Click here to watch the briefing live on YouTube.