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News from the Kentucky Hospital Association
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, January 28, 2016 9:35 AM
Answers to many of the questions submitted by participants during the Long-Term Care Hospital (LTCH) Quality Reporting Program (QRP) Provider Training offered in Baltimore, Maryland, in November have been posted and are available on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) website at, under ‘Downloads’.

Additionally, CMS will host a follow-up webinar on February 3. The primary focus will be on Sections GG (Functional Abilities and Goals) and M (Skin Conditions) of the LTCH Continuity Assessment Record and Evaluation (CARE) Data Set V 3.0. Information about Section O (Special Treatments, Procedures and Programs) and where to find additional assistance...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, January 26, 2016 8:42 AM
On January 22, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) launched important changes to the Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program hardship exception process that will reduce burden on clinicians, hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs). These changes are a result of recent Medicare legislation – the Patient Access and Medicare Protection Act (PAMPA), Pub. L. No. 114-115 – and ongoing efforts to improve the program.

CMS has posted new, streamlined hardship applications, reducing the amount of information that eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals and CAHs must submit to apply for an exception. The new applications and instructions for a hardship exception from the Medicare Electronic Health Records Incentive Program 2017 payment adjustment are available here....
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, January 25, 2016 10:22 AM
The Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and the Kentucky Society for Human Resource Management have announced the companies on the 12th Annual Best Places to Work in Kentucky List. The winner rankings will be announced at an awards dinner on April 20 in Lexington.

Winners have been selected in three categories, based on company size.

Seven Kentucky hospitals and one system were honored on this year's list:

Small Companies

Saint Joseph Martin Medium Companies

Clark Regional Medical Center, Winchester Harrison Memorial Hospital, Cynthiana Large Companies

Baptist Health Kentucky, Multiple Locations Frankfort Regional Medical Center Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital, Ashland Our Lady of Peace, Louisville Rockcastle Regional Hospital and Respiratory Care Center, Mount Vernon For more information, visit

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, January 21, 2016 9:37 AM

The Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) is collecting health services utilization data through the annual survey process. This data is published in a report each year and is critical information used for health care access, planning and the Certificate of Need (CON) Program. CEOs should have received an email from Beth Morris ( as well as a letter by mail with instructions for completing the hospital, surgery and megavolt/Pet/MRI surveys.

Please make sure the appropriate person in your organization completes these surveys and returns them as soon as possible to Morris. If you have questions or you do not receive the survey requests, contact Morris in the Office of Health Policy at the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, January 20, 2016 10:01 AM

The KIPSQ Safe Table Meeting scheduled for tomorrow, January 21, in Madisonville has been cancelled. There is no rescheduled date at this time. If you have questions, contact Sharon Perkins ( at KHA. For more information on upcoming Safe Table Meetings, view the brochure and registration information on the KIPSQ website at

By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, January 19, 2016 9:30 AM

The program and registration information for the KHA District Meetings in March are available at

KHA members should mark their calendars and plan to attend. All meetings will begin at 9:45 a.m. local time and conclude following lunch at 12:30 p.m.

March 2
9:45 a.m. (CT)
Twin Lakes District
The Medical Center - WKU Health Sciences Complex
700 1st Avenue
Bowling Green
  March 9
9:45 a.m. (ET)
Ohio Valley District
KHA Headquarters
2501 Nelson Miller Parkway
March 11
9:45 a.m. (ET)
Cumberland District
Baptist Health Richmond
801 Eastern Bypass
  March 24
9:45 a.m. (ET)
Blue Grass District
UK HealthCare
Charles T. Wethington Jr. Bldg., Rm. 127
900 South Limestone

If you have any questions, please contact Pam Kirchem at KHA (

By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, January 18, 2016 12:16 PM
Last week, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) approved a multi-layered recommendation that would grant hospitals a full payment update for 2017, as well as cutting payments for 340B drugs and redirecting some of the savings into uncompensted care funds that the Commission stated would benefit more hospitals under a new Medicare-based calculation than the current one based on Medicaid days. Three Commissioners opposed the recommendation.

Commission Chairman Francis Crosson noted hospitals would gain $3 billion in payments, while Medicare beneficiaries would gain some out-of-pocket savings on drug costs directly and others could benefit later if Medigap insurers pass savings along by lowering premiums. Opponents stated the policy recommendation could hurt some providers and strayed beyond MedPAC's competency in addressing the 340B program.

What You Need to Know

MedPAC voted to give hospitals a full 2017 Medicare payment update currently projected at 1.75 percentage points....
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, January 18, 2016 12:08 PM
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) unanimously approved seven recommendations on payment systems last week. The recommendations approved were:

Recommendation 1: Physicians and other health professionals The Congress should increase payment rates for physician and other health professional services by the amount specified in current law for calendar year 2017.

Recommendation 2: Ambulatory Surgical Centers The Congress should eliminate the update to the payment rates for ambulatory surgical centers for 2017. The Congress should also require ambulatory surgical centers to submit cost data.

Recommendation 3: Dialysis Facilities The Congress should increase the outpatient dialysis payment rate by the update specified in current law for calendar year 2017.

Recommendation 4: Skilled Nursing Facilities The Congress should eliminate the market basket for 2017 and 2018 and direct the Secretary to revise the prospective payment system (PPS) for skilled...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, January 14, 2016 10:09 AM

KHA's priority legislation, SB 20, addresses the need for a Medicaid managed care organization (MCO) appeals process. Nina Eisner, CEO of Ridge Behavioral Health System in Lexington, testified before the Senate Health and Welfare Committee on January 13 and gave examples of why this legislation is desperately needed.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, January 14, 2016 8:51 AM
Louisville's Norton Women's & Kosair Children's Hospital joins St. Elizabeth Medical Center (Edgewood) and UK Chandler Medical Center (Lexington) in receiving a baby-friendly designation from the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative.

Currently, 326 U.S. hospitals and birthing centers in 48 states and the District of Columbia hold the Baby-Friendly designation. Every hospital that attains the Baby-Friendly designation must demonstrate successful implementation of the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes.

For more information about the initiative, visit

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, January 13, 2016 9:53 AM

KHA is now accepting applications for the Annual KHA Quality Awards. Please see the application for the full details. Applications, including full payment are due on April 1. Awards will be presented at the KHA Annual Convention Awards Luncheon on May 13 in Lexington.

If you have any questions, please contact Elizabeth Cobb at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via email at

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, January 08, 2016 9:38 AM
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Innovation Center has announced a new $157 million funding opportunity, the Accountable Health Community Model, that acknowledges the social determinants framework for health and the need for partnerships to link what happens in the clinical setting with what happens in the community. The five-year program is the first CMS Innovation Center model to focus on the health-related social needs of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, including building alignment between clinical and community-based services at the local level.

CMS will award a total of 44 cooperative agreements, ranging from $1 million to $4.5 million, to successful applicants to implement the Accountable Health Communities model. Award recipients under this model, referred to as “bridge organizations,” will oversee the screening of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries for social and behavioral issues, such as housing instability, food insecurity, utility needs, interpersonal violence and...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, January 08, 2016 9:35 AM
KIPSQ will conduct a Safe Table topic every month in three different locations thoughout the state for members of the PSO. Participants will:

Generate candid discussion and share organizational experiences on patient safety and quality issues Exchange information about bet practices relative to patient safety Encourage coordinated/collaborative efforts and new partnerships Network and communicate A brochure and registration information are available on the KIPSQ website at

For more information on the benefits of your facility joining KIPSQ, visit or contact Nancy Galvagni (  or Sharon Perkins (
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, December 31, 2015 9:09 AM

KHA is pleased to release the Utilization Trend Report, updated with data from January 1, 2010 through September 30, 2015.   

A copy of the report is available at  If you have any questions, please contact Chuck Warnick at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, December 31, 2015 9:07 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 summer edition of the Kentucky Trustee is available at

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 Kirchem at KHA (502-426-6220 or 800-945-4542 or via e-mail at

By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, December 28, 2015 9:51 AM
The Kentucky Regional Extension Center's (REC) January 7 Transitions of Care (ToC) webinar will kick off the new year with an in-depth review of the Modified Stage 2 objective, Health Information Exchange and look ahead at what to expect in 2016. Direct Messaging will be discussed in further detail along with the benefits of being a member of the Community of Practice.The webinar will be the first of a series on what Direct Messaging is and how to implement it.

You may register for all of the ToC webinars or individual webinars by visiting the Transitions of Care Community of Practice Program...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, December 14, 2015 10:14 AM

The first week of January, each hospital will receive email notification from Compdata that participation for KHA's 2016 Compensation and Benefits Survey is open. Now is a good time to discuss the survey with your team to decide who will complete the survey in January for each of your locations (if applicable).

As a reminder, you will receive the survey results FREE of charge if you provide a complete data submission by the survey deadline. Don't miss out on the most comprehensive health care compensation resource in Kentucky — mark your calendar for January participation today!

If you have any questions, please contact Chuck Warnick at KHA (

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, December 10, 2015 9:06 AM
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on October 16 published a final rule with comment for the Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program that makes modifications to meaningful use requirements in 2015 through 2017 and sets the start date for Stage 3 of the program. For more details on the rule, see the AHA Regulatory Advisory.

CMS is accepting comments on the provisions of the meaningful use Stage 3 final rule through December 15. AHA will submit comments, and hospitals are strongly encouraged to submit their own comments to the agency. AHA has also provided a model comment letter to assist you. The model comment letter includes recommendations on how to improve the structure of the meaningful use program and increase flexibility to ensure program success by the greatest number of eligible providers. It also includes specific comments on the Stage 3 objectives.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, December 09, 2015 9:22 AM
On January 6, KHREF will host a the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model webinar. Details and registration are available on the KHA website,, under Events.

Rapidly following on the heels of its oncology bundles announcement earlier this year, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced on July 9 a new proposed mandate for a 90-day retrospective bundled payment model. The proposed rule became final on November 16, 2015, and incorporated several program changes as a result of national feedback. This model impacts Medicare beneficiaries receiving lower extremity joint replacement or reattachment of lower extremity procedures in acute care hospitals located in 67 mandated geographic areas across the country. Modeled after the Bundled Payments for Care Improvement program and evidenced by the Acute Care Episode demonstration project, the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement model aims to improve cost efficiencies, patient outcomes and collaboration among various types...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, December 04, 2015 8:41 AM
To help eligible professionals, eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals (CAHs) successfully participate in the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs in 2015, CMS has posted new resources on the CMS EHR Incentive Programs website.

Eligible Professionals and Eligible Hospitals/CAHs: What You Need to Know for 2015 Overview of the EHR Incentive Programs in 2015-2017 What’s Changed for the EHR Incentive Programs in 2015-2017 Eligible Professionals and Eligible Hospitals/CAHs Attestation Worksheets Alternate Exclusions and Specifications Fact Sheet Eligible Professionals and Eligible Hospitals/CAHs Objectives and Measures Tables Eligible Professionals and Eligible Hospitals/CAHs Specification Sheets CMS will continue to update the EHR Incentive Programs website to include additional information and resources for eligible professionals and...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, November 20, 2015 9:06 AM
Twenty-eight Kentucky hospitals have been recognized for its accomplishments in rural healthcare in four different categories: Quality, Outcomes, Patient Satisfaction and Financial Health.

The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) and iVantage Health Analytics, a private research firm that compiles a hospital strength index to recognize excellence, has named the following Kentucky hospitals among facilities throughout the country recognized for excellence:


Baptist Health Richmond Bluegrass Community Hospital, Versailles Bourbon Community Hospital, Paris Clark Regional Medical Center, Winchester Harrison Memorial Hospital, Cynthiana Logan Memorial Hospital, Russellville Marcum and Wallace Memorial Hospital, Irvine Mary Breckinridge ARH Hospital, Hyden McDowell ARH Hospital Morgan County ARH Hospital, West Liberty Paul B Hall Regional Medical Center, Paintsville Rockcastle Regional Hospital, Mount...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, November 19, 2015 9:10 AM

KHA has appointed Susan Starling, chief executive officer of Marcum and Wallace Memorial Hospital in Irvine, as the KHA Board Chair Elect for 2015-2016. She replaces Vicki Darnell, who recently retired, on the KHA Board of Trustees.

Starling will serve as Chair Elect for the remainder of the Association year.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, November 19, 2015 9:01 AM
More than 958 hospitals and health systems have signed the #123forEquity pledge to eliminate health disparities. AHA is working to meet its goal of 1,000 pledges by the end of the year. At the November 12 KHA Board meeting, the Board voted to encourage Kentucky hospitals to participate in the Pledge.

In 2011, the American College of Healthcare Executives, American Hospital Association, Association of American Medical Colleges, Catholic Health Association of the United States and America’s Essential Hospitals stood together in a call to action to eliminate health care disparities.

The focus is on:

increasing the collection and use of race, ethnicity and language preference data; increasing cultural competency training; and increasing diversity in governance and leadership. Visit to learn more about the pledge and add your facility at

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 9:05 AM

The Joint Commission has released its annual Top Performers on Key Quality Measures List, and 24 Kentucky hospitals were recognized for 10 different categories in the report.

Heart Attack

  • Baptist Health Madisonville
  • Frankfort Regional Medical Center
  • Meadowview Regional Medical Center
  • Owensboro Health Regional Hospital
  • St Elizabeth Edgewoord
  • St Elizabeth Florence
  • St Elizabeth Fort Thomas
  • UK Chandler Medical Center
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 8:56 AM
On October 6, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final rule for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. To support provider participation in 2015, CMS has released two additional FAQs in response to inquiries about the public health reporting objective in 2015.

FAQ 13409 Question: For 2015, how should a provider report on the public health reporting objective if they had planned to be in Stage 1 meaningful use which required sending a test message and continued submission if successful, but did not require registration of intent?

Answer: We did not intend to require providers to engage in new activities during 2015, which may not be feasible after the publication of the final rule in order to successfully demonstrate meaningful use in 2015. Since providers in Stage 1 in 2015 were not previously required to submit a registration of intent to submit data to meet Objective 10 measures, providers may meet the measures by having...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, November 16, 2015 10:01 AM
Joe Koch Introduces Charlie Cook at KHA 2015 HCLCOn November 13, the KHA Health Care Leadership Conference brought Kentucky’s political leaders together with hospital leaders from throughout the state to learn about the issues that will affect hospitals in 2016. Members heard from the Republican and Democratic state party leaders about upcoming legislation and plans for the new administration. The media panel provided an interesting and informative analysis of the recent elections, which provided great insight into the political climate of the commonwealth.

KHA members also approved the Association’s legislative priorities for the upcoming session of the Kentucky General Assembly.

Thank you to all the members who participated in the Conference. KHA looks forward to advocating...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, November 12, 2015 9:23 AM
Tonja Williams, MSN, RN, president and chief executive officer of Continuing Care Hospital, a part of KentuckyOne Health, in Lexington has been selected to serve on the governing council of the American Hospital Association (AHA) Long-Term Care and Rehabilitation Section for Kentucky's region. Her three-year term will begin on January 1, 2016, and extend through December 31, 2018.

This Section focuses on the interests and concerns of post-acute care providers — long-term acute care hospitals (LTACHs,) inpatient rehabilitation facilities (IRFs), skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) and home health agencies (HHAs). The primary goals for Williams's term will be to advise AHA on public policy issues, advocacy positions, emerging issues and member service strategies as well as to serve as a channel back to her peers.

AHA's Section for Long-Term Care and Rehabilitation seeks to promote and enhance the understanding of the health and related continuing care needs of persons of all ages, and of the issues...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, November 11, 2015 8:37 AM
On October 6, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final rule with comment for the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. To keep providers informed of changes to the programs and how to participate in 2015, CMS has also released three new FAQs providing clarification on how to attest to certain measures for health information exchange, patient electronic access and other objectives that require patient action.

FAQ 12817 Question: For the Health Information Exchange objective for meaningful use in 2015 through 2017, may an eligible professional (EP), eligible hospital or critical access hospital (CAH) count a transition of care or referral in its numerator for the measure if they electronically create and send a summary of care document using their Certified Electronic Health Record Technology (CEHRT) to a third party organization that plays a role in determining the next provider of care and ultimately delivers the summary of care document?...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, November 10, 2015 9:08 AM
KHA is pleased to share that the problematic proposed Certificate of Need (CON) Formal Review regulation, 900 KAR 6:070, has been withdrawn! Thank you to all hospital leaders that responded to the Action Alert last week and made calls to your legislators! You were very effective.

The proposed regulation would have weakened Kentucky’s CON process substantially. In summary, the proposed changes would have defied statutory law requiring the State Health Plan criteria and population/geographic need to be considered as separate criteria in an application. Under the proposed regulation, if an applicant had met the State Health Plan Criteria (even under an exception to need criteria) they would have been consistent with overall need. This change would have shifted the burden of proving need from the applicant to disproving need by a challenger.

The formal review regulation will revert back to the language in place prior to the proposal, which KHA supports.

If you have any questions, please...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, November 10, 2015 8:59 AM

The KHA Small Rural and Critical Access Hospital Forum will meet via webinar tomorrow, November 11, at 2:00 p.m. (ET).  Administrators who have not received the call in information should contact Elizabeth Cobb at KHA (

Agenda topics will include a Certificate of Need (CON)/State Health Plan update, hospital requirements for sexual assault response, preserving emergency care in rural areas and more.

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