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News from the Kentucky Hospital Association
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 29, 2016 8:37 AM
Nearly 8 million hospital patients in 2013 were discharged for postacute care in another setting such as a skilled nursing facility or home-based care, according to newly released data from AHRQ. Those patients represented 22 percent of all hospital discharges that year. AHRQ’s analysis of such care is the first based on a nationally representative all-payer dataset, the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project 2013 National Inpatient Sample. According to the analysis, Statistical Brief #205: An All-Payer View of Hospital Discharge to Postacute Care, 2013,...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, June 28, 2016 8:58 AM
The Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program 2017 hardship exception instructions and ...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 23, 2016 9:29 AM
Have you used Lean to improve processes in your hospital? Whether you have used internal resources or a consulting group, it can be easy to get started and hard to sustain. What are some of the things that are part of an effective Lean improvement initiative?

You have developed a formal linkage between your strategic goals and your improvement program. Your executive team receives periodic reports from your Lean leader(s) about activities and accomplishments. You have an effective “pipeline” set up for improvement project requests. You have incorporated improvement goals into your leaders’ performance evaluation criteria. You have a plan in place for continuing to develop process improvement capability within your current leadership team. If you do not have these basic elements in place, it can be difficult to maintain momentum for your process improvement initiative.

Take a closer look at a couple of the most important items:

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 22, 2016 3:21 PM

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 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 Wednesday, June 22, 2016 3:13 PM
Governor Matt Bevin held a news conference Wednesday morning to announce his plan to replace Kentucky's expanded Medicaid program.

Bevin would like to launch a program called “Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health” (HEALTH). It would be a waiver application process for people wanting Medicaid coverage. This plan is a 1115 waiver from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for a demonstration project designed to "provide dignity to individuals as they move towards self-reliability, accountability and ultimately independence from public assistance." It is only for the Medicaid expansion population — those between 100-138% of the Federal Poverty Level (FP)L. Governor Bevin stressed that this program is for able-bodied participants, and not the frail or elderly.

“This proposal is modeled after the very same health plan offered to Kentucky state employees including incentives to promote healthy lifestyles. This plan offers common sense strategies to help our citizens...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 20, 2016 8:07 AM
Representatives from all Kentucky hospitals are invited to attend a Town Hall meeting on Hepatitis C, infectious disease and substance abuse.

The Kentucky Department for Public Health and Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) are hosting national, state and local experts in Hazard on Thursday, July 28 – World Hepatitis Day. The Event will be held from 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. (ET) at Hazard Community and Technical College. Details and registration information are available at

The goals of the Town Hall Meeting are to increase community awareness; provide best practice recommendations on the prevention, detection and treatment of Hepatitis C and HIV and substance abuse; and engage multi-sector community, state and national stakeholders to organize resources and enhance engagement. The event’s featured Speaker will be Dr. John Ward, CDC Director of the Division of Viral Hepatitis.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, June 16, 2016 1:44 PM
An emergency amendment to a regulation to make Zika Virus Disease reportable in Kentucky has been signed by Governor Matt Bevin. The approved emergency amendment to the Reportable Disease Surveillance regulation (902 KAR 2:020) was then filed on June 15 with the Legislative Research Commission. The emergency amendment was effective as of the date filed with the LRC.

Thus, Zika Virus Disease is now reportable in Kentucky. Notification shall be considered priority and shall be made within one (1) business day.

For Priority Reporting, a report made within one (1) business day shall be:

 Submitted electronically, by fax, or by telephone to the local health department serving the county in which the patient resides; and If submitted by telephone, followed up by electronic or fax submission of a report to the local health department serving the county in which the patient resides within one (1) business day. A report submitted by fax shall be made with...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 7:39 AM
A report yesterday from the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy underscores the dangers of fentanyl, an extremely potent opioid that is leading to more overdose deaths, often because dealers mix it with heroin and sell the lethal blend to unwitting addicts.

Fentanyl-related deaths have been on the rise across the country over the past year, and experts say many addicts are not aware they are consuming the drug. It is 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin and can prove deadly at very low levels, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

In Kentucky, fentanyl was a factor in 420 fatal overdoses in 2015, up from 121 in the previous year. The drug contributed to 34 percent of all overdose deaths in the state, frequently in combination with heroin or other drugs.

Overall, fatal overdoses totaled 1,248 last year, compared to 1,071 in 2014. Heroin was detected in 28 percent of cases, consistent with the previous year. However, as a total, heroin-related deaths...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 7:35 AM
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday awarded $32 million in grants to find and enroll eligible children in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program. The University of Kentucky Research Foundation is one of 38 recipients that include states, school districts and community organizations in 27 states who will target eligible populations that are less likely to be enrolled.

University of Kentucky Research Foundation, a first-time participant in the Connecting Kids to Coverage Outreach and Enrollment Program, will focus on enrolling uninsured children and parents from 40 counties in the rural mountainous Appalachian region of the state. The strategies include using an existing network of Community Health Workers to work with local community-based partners providing application and renewal assistance to enroll and retain eligible uninsured children and parents in Medicaid and CHIP. The targeted outreach approaches for these hard-to-reach individuals will be to go where they “work,...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 7:27 AM

Kim Dees will be leaving the KHA staff at the end of June upon mutual agreement with KHA President Mike Rust. Dees has served for nine years as KHA’s Vice President for Health Professions. The loss of anticipated grant funding from an American Apprenticeship Initiative earlier in the year and dissolution of the Workforce Consortium last year eliminated funding support for the position. At the same time, Dees was investigating other opportunities she hopes to pursue that may continue to offer her the opportunity to interact with KHA members and nursing leadership, both in hospitals and universities.

Various responsibilities previously undertaken by Dees will be assigned to other staff.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 10, 2016 7:39 AM
All Providers Must Take Action by July 1, 2016 to Avoid Payment Adjustments

Hardship exception applications are due by July 1 for eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs).

The Medicare EHR Incentive Program 2017 hardship exception instructions and ...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, June 06, 2016 8:10 AM

The 2016 KHA Small Rural and Critical Access Hospital Conference is Wednesday, June 8. 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 their hospital for top performance.

View the brochure for more details, and register online in the Events section of

If you have questions, contact Elizabeth Cobb at KHA (

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, June 03, 2016 9:54 AM
The U.S. Department of Labor has issued its long-awaited Final Rule to the White Collar Overtime Exemptions. Amongst other changes, the Final Rule increases the minimum salary level to qualify for exemption status to $47,476 per year for most occupations. For hospitals, this will mean that many of their employees will no longer be exempt from the overtime requirements. On June 7, KHREF will host a webinar to walk health care employers through the Final Rule, and provide insight on the short-term and long-term effects of the new provisions. Through scenarios and other practical illustrations, this session will also explore the options available to employers to lawfully reduce their overtime compensation exposure.

For more information, view the program's brochure. Online registration is available at
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, May 26, 2016 7:09 AM

Kentucky insurance companies have filed their rate premiums with the Public Protection Cabinet for 2017. This information represents the planned change, and in these cases, increase, to the base rate. Projected medical and administrative costs are used by actuaries to develop the proposed premiums. Other factors such as the increased costs of medical services and prescription drugs also affect these rates.

Company Name


% Change

% Change


Golden Rule Insurance Company





Humana Health Plan, Inc.





Humana Health Plan, Inc.

Small Group




Aetna Life Insurance Company

Small Group




Aetna Health Inc. (PA)

Small Group




Aetna Health Inc. (PA)





Baptist Health Plan, Inc.





Baptist Health Plan, Inc.

Small Group




UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company       

Small Group




UnitedHealthcare of Kentucky, Ltd.

Small Group




UnitedHealthcare of Ohio, Inc.

Small Group




CareSource Kentucky Co.





Anthem Health Plans of Kentucky, Inc.

Small Group




Anthem Health Plans of Kentucky, Inc.





By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, May 18, 2016 8:48 AM

The Kentucky Hospital Association (KHA) held its yearly Awards Luncheon on May 13, at the 87th Annual KHA Convention in Lexington. During the event, six hospitals from across the state were recognized with KHA Quality Awards. This award is presented to honor hospital leadership and innovation in quality, safety and commitment in patient care.

This year’s recipients were:

  • Marcum and Wallace Memorial Hospital , in Irvine, for their “Network Community Lung Cancer Screening Program”;
  • Rockcastle Memorial Hospital , in Mount Vernon, for their “I am the Patient Experience” project;
  • Twin Lakes Regional Medical Center , in Leitchfield, for “Creating a High Reliability Organization”;
  • Kosair Children’s Hospital , in Louisville, for their “Reduction of Central Line Associated Bloodstream Infections” program;
  • Central State Hospital , in Louisville, for “Improving Patient Safety in Environment”; and
  • Continuing Care Hospital , in Lexington, for their Medication Reconciliation” program.
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, May 17, 2016 7:51 AM
Susan Starling accepting Gavel from Kevin HalterThe Kentucky Hospital Association (KHA) presented several awards during the Association’s Awards Luncheon on May 13, at the 87 th Annual KHA Convention in Lexington.

The highlight of the luncheon was the installment of the 2016-2017 Chair of the KHA Board of Trustees, Susan Starling, chief executive officer of Marcum and Wallace Memorial Hospital, in Irvine. Starling will begin her tenure as Chair on July 1.

KHA’s Award of Excellence was presented to Senator Ralph Alvarado. The Senator has devoted his career to unselfishly serving the health care needs of Kentucky’s citizens and with his “servant” attitude, took this a step further and sought public office, being elected to the Kentucky Senate serving the 29th district covering Clark, Fayette...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, May 17, 2016 6:46 AM
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is hosting listening sessions this week to share more information about the recently released Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM).

Overview of the MACRA NPRM

Date: Tuesday, May 17 Time: 12:00 - 1:30 p.m. (ET) Details: The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA)...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, May 17, 2016 6:40 AM
Kentucky’s Insurance Commissioner filed a lawsuit on May 13 in Franklin Circuit Court against the company originally hired to process and pay claims for the now-defunct Kentucky Health Cooperative (Co-op). The suit contends that CGI Technologies and Solutions, Inc. was grossly negligent in processing and paying claims and that it breached the contract it had with the Co-op.

The Co-op was created in 2012 under provisions of the Affordable Care Act to provide health insurance coverage to Kentuckians. After suffering severe financial losses, the Co-op was placed in rehabilitation in 2015 and, after further investigation, was placed into liquidation early this year when it was determined that the Co-op would never recover from its deep deficit.

Insurance Commissioner Brian Maynard filed the lawsuit in his capacity as the Co-op’s court-appointed liquidator. “We have a duty to investigate the causes of the Co-op’s collapse and to hold responsible those individuals who caused the collapse,” Maynard...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, May 11, 2016 10:13 AM
The KHA 87th Annual Convention is tomorrow and Friday in Lexington! This year, KHA is going mobile by providing you with a mobile app for the event.

Download the KHA Mobile App, powered by Interapt, and enjoy the convenience of having Convention session details, speaker information, maps and sponsors all on your phone.

After the Convention, keep the app to stay connected with important hospital news! Soon, the new KHA app will be your one stop for the membership directory, events and much more. To create a true multi-media experience with the upcoming changes, hospital and system C-Suite executives are encouraged to visit the Interapt booth during the Convention for a quick photo, which will be included in the Directory.

Instructions and a download link are available at

If you have not registered for the Convention, registration is available on site. Don't miss this opportunity to learn and network with your colleagues from across the state....
By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, May 09, 2016 9:49 AM
Do you have patients that you and your hospital staff know by name because of their frequent visits? Does your Emergency Department see some patients multiple times a month? Caretenders can help. Caretenders has established a care delivery model specific to High Risk Hospitalization (HRH) patients. Once you contact them, their transitional care nurse will come to the hospital, meet with the patient and family, obtain all necessary information on the patient and complete an HRH assessment.

Caretenders will then work to transition the patient from your hospital, every step of the way, until they return home. At home, they will admit your patient within 24 hours. They will also have our Medical Social Worker make daily phone calls to the patient for at least 7 days. Caretenders utilizes CardioCom telehealth system to support their efforts in the home. CardioCom takes the patient’s vital signs and transmits them daily to their monitoring system. This provides reassurance that any slight change in the patient’s health will be detected quickly and effectively. The Caretenders team can then work with the MD to adjust medications, O2 levels or even administer diuretics in the home.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, May 06, 2016 8:28 AM

KHA's Annual Convention is less than a week away! If you have not already registered, take this opportunity to sign up. Visit the Convention website for all the information you need, including session details, schedules and visitor information.

In addition to the General Sessions, there are tracks this year for financial professionals, your legal team, nurse executives, medical officers/physicians and a day of programs just for your volunteers, directors of volunteers, gift shop managers.

If you have any questions, please contact Carol Walters at KHA (

By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, May 06, 2016 7:58 AM
Don’t forget to register for the May 10 MLN Connects® National Provider Call, MACRA Listening Session: Quality Payment Program Proposed Rule. This call will be an opportunity for stakeholders, specifically Part B Fee-For-Service clinicians, and state and national associations that represent health care providers, to provide the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) with early feedback on the proposed policy for the Quality Payment Program. To participate, visit the MLN Connects Event Registration page. Space may be limited, so please register early.

CMS also encourages you to register for:

By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, May 03, 2016 8:59 AM
The roots of medical practice in the U.S. goes from colonial times to today’s medical profession with its 200 certified specialties. During KHA's Annual Convention, May 12-13 in Lexington, one session will examine the current and historical physician supply and demand trends, training, compensation patterns and practice types. It will also project how health care reform and related changes will reshape the way physicians practice and are paid, with a look at value-based compensation, the team-based approach to care, medical homes, “complexivists,” concierge practice and more.

Speaker Kurt Mosley serves as Vice President of Strategic Alliances for Merritt Hawkins, the nation’s leading physician search and consulting firm, and a company of AMN Healthcare, the largest health care staffing organization in the United States. With over 20 years of health care industry experience, Mosley is one of the nation’s leading authorities on the evolving health care system, particularly the way physician supply, demand...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Thursday, April 28, 2016 8:30 AM
Don't forget! The last day for Early Bird Registration for the KHA Annual Convention is tomorrow, April 29. The discounted rate is $200. After tomorrow, the regular rate of $225 will be in effect.

This year's meeting, May 12-13 in Lexington provides a great opportunity to learn from prominent speakers from around the country, network with your colleagues and earn ACHE face-to-face credits or CEUs.

Make your plans now to attend! Details and registration information are available on the Convention website at You can also go directly to the registration page to register today.

If you have any Convention-related questions, please contact Carol Walters at KHA (

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, April 27, 2016 10:07 AM
CareChex has released its listing of America's Top Quality Providers for 2016, and Kentucky hospitals have been ranked among the best in the nation. CareChex is a division of Comparion Medical Analytics — a Quantros health care information services company. CareChex provides clinical, financial and patient satisfaction findings to consumers, providers and purchasers of U.S. medical care. The rankings provide a composite evaluation of all components of medical quality including process of care, outcomes of care and patient experiences.

The following lists Kentucky hospitals that were ranked in the top 10% nationwide in several different categories (number shows overall ranking):

Overall Hospital Care

46. King's Daughters Medical Center, Ashland

146. Owensboro Health Regional Medical Center

Overall Medical Care

20. King's Daughters Medical Center, Ashland

205. St. Elizabeth Fort Thomas

218. Norton Hospitals, Louisville

Overall Surgical Care

By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, April 27, 2016 8:58 AM
During the KHA Annual Convention, May 12-13 in Lexington, Lars Enstrom and James Callanan of Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) Healthcare Industry Group will discuss, “How Alternative Payment Methods (APMs) Influence Health Care Delivery Patient Flow, Cost and Quality.”

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has set a goal of tying 50 percent of fee-for-service Medicare payments to quality or value through APMs, such as Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) or bundled payment arrangements by the end of 2018. As payers investigate alternative ways to transfer financial risk and quality accountability to providers, providers need to develop approaches that break down the historic “silo” nature of treatment patterns and develop pathways that respond to the particular pressures of each type of APM while improving the outcomes for patients.  

At the end of this presentation, attendees will be able to:

Learn from early experiences about the necessary activities required to be successful...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Wednesday, April 27, 2016 8:49 AM
A risk prediction model designed to forecast hospital readmissions based on patients’ electronic health records (EHR) for entire hospital stays was only modestly better than a model based on EHR data for just the day of admission, according to a new AHRQ-funded study. The study on predicting 30-day, all-cause hospital readmissions was based on data from nearly 33,000 hospital stays at six Dallas-Fort Worth hospitals from 2009 to 2010.

The authors stated their model was the first to use comprehensive EHR data from entire hospital stays. That model was shown to be only modestly better at predicting risk of readmission despite including many additional clinically relevant prognostic factors. The authors noted customized models that are disease-specific may be more effective in predicting readmission compared with the common multi-condition, readmission risk prediction model.

The study “Predicting All-Cause Readmissions Using Electronic Health Record Data From the Entire Hospitalization: Model Development...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 9:14 AM

Republic Bank, KHA's Platinum Sponsor, headquartered in Louisville, with 40 banking centers across five states and $3.7 billion in assets, is one of the largest locally owned community banks. And as a locally owned bank, Republic truly understands the needs of Kentucky hospitals.

With a full range of commercial account products, from commercial lending and leasing, analysis checking and treasury management services to payroll processing, merchant services, business credit card and online banking services, Republic can provide whatever your facility needs to succeed.

For further information, go to or visit with their representatives at the KHA Convention, May 12-13 in Lexington.

By Ginger - Site Admin on Monday, April 25, 2016 10:30 AM
KHA will host a webinar on May 3 to help you learn how the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) will impact reimbursement for your organization.

In April 2015, Congress passed MACRA, which made the news for eliminating the dysfunctional Sustainable Growth Rate formula. At the same time, it introduced significant changes in the Medicare Part B reimbursement model, involving the expansion of existing value-based incentives (PQRS, Meaningful Use and the Value-Based Modifier) as well as the introduction of entirely new incentive programs.

For webinar details and a registration form, view the brochure or register online today.

If you have any questions, contact Carol Walters...
By Ginger - Site Admin on Friday, April 22, 2016 9:33 AM
Seven Kentucky hospitals and one health system are among the winners in the 12th annual Best Places to Work in Kentucky. The awards ceremony recognized 100 large-, medium- and small-sized companies for their employee engagement and business success.

The Kentucky Society for Human Resource Management and Kentucky Chamber of Commerce hosts the initiative. The selection process was managed by Best Companies Group, which uses an assessment of employee policies and procedures and the results of an internal employee survey. 

Hospital honorees include (number signifies the company's rank on the statewide lists by company size):

Small Companies

3. Saint Joseph Martin

Medium Companies

3. Harrison Memorial Hospital, Cynthiana

29. Clark Regional Medical Center, Winchester

Large Companies

5. Frankfort Regional Medical Center

15. Baptist Health Kentucky

19. Our Lady of Peace, Louisville

21. Our Lady of Bellefonte, Ashland

26. Rockcastle...
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