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By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 27, 2014 10:03 AM
On June 1, the Office of Health Policy published proposed changes to 900 KAR 6.070 Certificate of Need (CON) Considerations for Formal Review. Comments will be accepted through June 30.  The proposed change would eliminate the need criteria, which is separate and distinct from criteria in the State Health Plan. Adoption of these changes would significantly change the CON program in Kentucky and would result in the unneeded proliferation of health care services because an application that complies with the State Health Plan would be presumed as meeting the “need” criteria even if the State Health Plan methodology is outdated or inaccurate.

Every KHA member should submit comments outlining concerns with these regulations to the Cabinet on or before Monday, June 30. Hospitals can submit their own comments or you may say that you support the comments submitted by KHA. It is also important to get legislators involved in this issue. KHA is particularly interested in getting support of the Regulation Review Committee...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 26, 2014 8:48 AM

The Kentucky Trustee is a quarterly newsletter that KHA produces for the benefit of hospital boards. The goal is to provide your trustees with information they need to lead your hospital forward in today’s rapidly changing environment. The spring/summer edition of the Kentucky Trustee is available at http://www.kyha.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/KTSpringSummer2014.pdf.

KHA mails the Kentucky Trustee newsletter to all trustees for which the Association has contact information. This is a good time to ensure KHA has your current board members’ addresses.

If you have suggestions for future issues of the Kentucky Trustee, please contact Pam Mullaney at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via e-mail at pmullaney@kyha.com).

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 26, 2014 8:37 AM
A few years ago, KHA shared a recording of the Kentucky Living Will with Kentucky hospital chief nursing officers, consumer advocates, compliance officers, quality improvement directors, risk management directors and Joint Commission directors. The importance of this resource cannot be understated. The audio recording, provided in-kind through the generous resources of the American Printing House for the Blind, will help your patients who are blind or have visual impairment hear about living wills in Kentucky so they have a voice in decisions about their medical care. Please make sure your clinicians have a copy of the recording, and you are welcome to download it to your hospital Intranet or website.

The KHA Effective Communications in Hospitals Committee worked tirelessly on assisting hospitals in the commonwealth better communicate with patients who are blind, deaf, or who have limited English proficiency. Much of the Committee's work, including the living will recording, can be found at http://www.kyha.com/kha-effective-communication-project/.

...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 20, 2014 10:21 AM
The Interim Joint Committee on Health and Welfare met in its first interim meeting on June 18 in Frankfort.

Commissioner Mary Begley, Dr. Alan Brenzel, Lisa Lee and staff from the Department for Behavioral Health, Development and Intellectual Disabilities (DBHDID) testified on the closing of the IMPACT Plus Program in Kentucky. IMPACT Plus was created as a Title V “funding stream” for additional behavioral health services with additional providers outside the 14 Community Mental Health Centers in 1997. IMPACT Plus was designed to serve children with high intensity behavioral health needs, who were in or at risk of out-of-home placement, after being required to meet eligibility criteria.

The DBHDID determined that, in current practice, the program is duplicative of the Medicaid managed care organizations (MCOs), which creates inefficiency in program administration and increases cost.

On January 1, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) authorized a Medicaid State...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 16, 2014 7:48 AM
A work group of the KHA Certificate of Need (CON) Committee has been meeting to review State Health Plan Criteria for home health services. The KHA CON Committee met June 10 and reviewed the recommendations of the work group. The CON Committee, based on the research regarding historical utilization of home health services, anticipated future need and new models of health care payment and delivery, have recommended two changes for consideration by the Office of Health Policy if they believe the criteria should be changed to meet anticipated need.

The recommendations include allowing hospitals to establish home health services if they do not already have services. The second recommendation would be to allow for growth of existing agencies that exceed national quality standards.

A copy of the comments, which summarize the findings of the CON Committee and the recommendations based on these findings, is available at http://www.new-kyha.com/Portals/5/NewsDocs/KHACommentsHomeHealth061114.pdf....
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 16, 2014 7:41 AM

On Thursday, June 12, CMS released a notice regarding changes to the Low Volume Hospital (LVH) and Medicare Dependent Hospital (MDH) exception payments for the last 6 months of FY 2014.

This document addresses payment for these programs only for the second half of fiscal year (FY) 2014 (April 1, 2014, through September 30, 2014). CMS proposed to implement the statutory changes for the first half of FY 2015 (October 1, 2014, through March 31, 2015) in the FY 2015 Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS)/Long-Term Care Hospital (LTCH) PPS proposed rule that appeared in the May 15, 2014 Federal Register.

KHA's Washington Liaison Larry Goldberg has provided an analysis of the announcement for KHA members. It can be found at http://www.new-kyha.com/Portals/5/NewsDocs/12Jun2014LVH-MDH.pdf.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 13, 2014 9:03 AM
The Kentucky Institute for Patient Safety and Quality (KIPSQ) is partnering with the Anthem Foundation to provide education, tools and resources to improve care and long-term outcomes for mothers and newborns. The Anthem Foundation has provided grant funding for hospitals to engage in a collaborative patient safety and quality program aimed at reducing early elective deliveries (EEDs), reducing obstetrical harm by preventing unnecessary cesareans, reducing adverse outcomes from oxytocin use and reducing OB hemorrhage. Additionally, resources will be provided to hospitals to improve the rate of breast feeding.

The program's first newsletter is now available. The first edition shares details about the program, successes the participating hospitals have already achieved, upcoming educational events, information on...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 13, 2014 8:54 AM
The Kentucky Hospital Engagement Network (K-HEN) is providing a three-tiered incentive program for participating hospitals. The purpose of the incentive program is to encourage hospitals to submit data in a timely manner, complete at least one Harm Across the Board Report and achieve the overarching goals of the program – 40 percent improvement in outcome measures and 20 percent reduction in readmissions. Hospitals that already have very good outcomes will receive support for sustaining their excellent work. The funding should help offset financial burdens for engaging in increased data submission and/or support additional resources for quality improvement. Participating hospitals have the potential to receive a maximum of $6,000 in incentive funding.

The first quarter incentive payments will be sent out today. K-HEN has one hospital with full participation in first quarter data submission which has also completed a the tier two requirement of submitting a Harm Across the Board Report. There are...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 13, 2014 8:40 AM

careLearning is an online education company designed to help health care organizations by providing reliable, trusted and easily-accessible talent management solutions. Through its partnership with KHA, careLearning is dedicated to providing the best education and training by bringing the classroom to you.

The latest careLearning newsletter is now available. 

To find out how careLearning can help your organization save money while keeping your team up to date on their continuing education requirements, please contact Pam Mullaney at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email at pmullaney@kyha.com).

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 12, 2014 7:49 AM

On Wednesday, June 18, the Interim Joint Committee on Health and Welfare will meet in Frankfort at 10:00 a.m. (ET). The agenda includes:

  • Cabinet for Health and Family Services Budget Overview
  • Impact Plus Program Changes
  • Medical Marijuana Legislation
  • Consideration of Referred Administrative Regulations

KHA staff will be in attendance at the meeting. For further information, contact Sarah S. Nicholson at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email at snicholson@kyha.com).

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 11, 2014 7:50 AM
Congressional support for reforming the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Recovery Audit Contractor (RAC) program continues to grow. Currently, 221 representatives – a majority of the House – have signed on to support the AHA-backed Medicare Audit Improvement Act (H.R.1250/S.1012). Kentucky Congressmen Andy Barr, Brett Guthrie, Thomas Massie, Hal Rogers and Ed Whitfield have all lent their support to the legislation.

Now is a great time to thank those Congressmen who have joined this effort and to reach out to those who have yet to sponsor the Act. Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul and Congressman John Yarmuth are not currently sponsors.

For further information, please contact Sarah S. Nicholson at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via e-mail at snicholson@kyha.com).

...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 06, 2014 10:44 AM
In letters to the AHA and the Catholic Health Association (CHA) of the U.S., Secretary Kathleen Sebelius confirmed that payments from private, not-for-profit foundations to qualified health plans (QHPs) on behalf of individuals who enroll in coverage via the Health Insurance Marketplaces are not prohibited. The clarification came in response to a request from the AHA and CHA that she confirm HHS was not discouraging hospital-affiliated or other charitable foundations from subsidizing premiums or cost-sharing expenses. A recent rule related...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 05, 2014 7:46 AM

Hospital-owned Durable Medical Equipment (DME) service line operators will meet in August at KHA Headquarters in Louisville for the purpose of networking and sharing information.

If you are a hospital DME service line professional, please contact Pam Mullaney at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email at pmullaney@kyha.com) for more details.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 04, 2014 7:26 AM
Joseph G. Koch, chief executive officer of Bourbon Community Hospital in Paris and chair of the KHA Legislative Committee, was awarded the American Hospital Association’s prestigious Grassroots Champion Award at its 2014 Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. Each year, in partnership with the state hospital associations, AHA recognizes one individual from each state for exceptional leadership in generating grassroots and community activity in support of a hospital’s mission.
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, June 03, 2014 8:28 AM
KHA will host its Grant Writing 101 Workshop on July 22 at the UK Center for Rural Health in Hazard.

There are many opportunities to tap grant funding to help support or fund projects in hospitals. Grant applications can be extremely competitive and there is certainly an art to writing successful grants. The Kentucky Grant Writing 101 Workshop will help novices research, plan and write successful grants.

KHA is partnering with the Kentucky Office of Rural Health and Community and Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky (CEDIK) to provide the right grant training for your needs.

The flier, available at http://www.kyha.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/KHAGrantWriting101Workshop0714.pdf, provides an agenda, details and registration information.

For further information, contact Elizabeth Cobb at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, June 03, 2014 7:56 AM
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is releasing new data and launching new initiatives at the annual Health Datapalooza conference in Washington, D.C.

On June 2, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its first annual update to the Medicare hospital charge data, or information comparing the average amount a hospital bills for services that may be provided in connection with a similar inpatient stay or outpatient visit. CMS is also releasing a suite of other data products and tools aimed to increase transparency about Medicare payments. The data on CMS’s website now includes inpatient and outpatient hospital charge data for 2012, and new interactive dashboards for the CMS Chronic Conditions Data Warehouse and geographic variation data. Also, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has launched a new open data initiative. Before the end of the conference, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) will announce the winners of two data...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 02, 2014 10:01 AM
KHA will host its annual Small Rural and Critical Access Hospital (CAH) Conference June 5-6 at the Hilton Garden Inn in Louisville. The conference is designed to help small, rural hospital leaders understand changes to the health care delivery system and think strategically about how to best position your hospital for top performance. Small, rural and CAH hospital chief executive officers, chief nursing officers, chief financial officers, other senior leaders and trustees are encouraged to attend.

A flier with details, an agenda and registration information is available at http://www.kyha.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/StrengtheningKentuckyRuralHospitalPerformance.pdf.

For further information, please contact Elizabeth Cobb at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email at ecobb@kyha.com).

By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 02, 2014 9:55 AM

The Kentucky Institute for Patient Safety and Quality (KIPSQ), KHA's patient safety organization (PSO), will host its Annual Membership Meeting on June 25. This meeting is open only to members of KIPSQ.

To register or for more information, please contact Sharon Perkins at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via e-mail at sperkins@kyha.com). 

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