Minnesota Hospital Association


July 10, 2017

MHA Newsline: July 10, 2017

In this issue 

Bigfork Valley Hospital honored with MHA Community Benefit Award

MHA on June 2 honored innovative programs and outstanding leaders in health care at its 33rd annual awards ceremony.   

Bigfork Valley Hospital received the Community Benefit Award in the small hospital category, which recognizes hospitals for working beyond their physical walls to improve the health and well-being of their communities.   

Bigfork Valley Hospital was honored for its Bigfork Valley ACTIVE magazine. Through its Community Health Needs Assessment, Bigfork Valley found it needed to connect with the community in a meaningful and effective way to address obesity. It chose to make staying active and eating well important enough to community members to overcome constraints like not having enough time or not liking the flavors of healthy foods. Bigfork Valley transformed its four-page hospital district newsletter into a 16-page magazine describing locally available fitness activities and delicious healthy foods.   

Six times a year, 3,020 households in the approximately 1,000-square-mile hospital district receive Bigfork Valley ACTIVE magazine. For a wider distribution, the hospital also posts the entire magazine on its website. Highlighted topics have ranged from cross country skiing and golf course walking to antioxidants and roasting vegetables to the value of laughter. As a call to action, the magazine includes a calendar of area active events where people can learn, practice or compete in a sport or activity.   

Additional award winners will be profiled in upcoming issues of Newsline. To learn more about the award winners, visit the MHA websitereturn to top   

MHA president and CEO appointed to represent hospitals on MCHA board of directors

MHA President and CEO Lorry Massa was appointed by Commissioner of Human Services Emily Piper to serve on the Minnesota Comprehensive Health Association (MCHA) board of directors.   

Legislation that went into effect April 4 requires that the MCHA board be comprised of two additional members, one representing hospitals and one representing health care providers. Massa was selected to represent hospitals on the board for a term beginning July 1 and ending June 30, 2019. This is a particularly important role as the state looks at re-creating a high-risk pool as a potential solution to the problems with the individual insurance market. return to top   

Medicare proposes changes to QPP

On June 30, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule amending the Medicare Quality Payment Program (QPP) for calendar year 2018. The QPP – often referred to as MACRA for the original authorizing legislation – requires certain clinicians to participate in either Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs) or a Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).   

The Trump administration believes the proposed changes will increase flexibility for clinicians and will reduce the regulatory burden imposed by the quality initiatives. Some key changes include allowing facility-based providers to meet MIPS requirements through the submission of measures and results from hospitals, allowances for more group reporting and “virtual groups” in MIPS, and an increase in the low-volume threshold that will exempt more providers from the participation requirements.   

The deadline to submit comments on the proposed rule is Aug. 21. A final rule is expected in October. View the proposed rulereturn to top   

Last call for MN Hospital PAC golf tournament

This is the last call for registrations for the Minnesota Hospital Political Action Committee (PAC) golf tournament. The tournament will be held on July 31 at Territory Golf Club in St. Cloud. Lunch will be served at 11:30 a.m., shotgun start at 12:30 p.m., with a dinner buffet and awards to follow at 5 p.m. Please contact Andrea Wombacher, division assistant, MHA, 651-603-3539, for information and to register. return to top   

Register for Aug. 24 medication safety conference

MHA will host a medication safety conference on Aug. 24 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Crowne Plaza in Plymouth. Pharmacists, physicians, nurses, leadership, medication safety officers and quality and risk management staff are encouraged to attend this full day of learning on medication safety.   

Lt. Col. Jerry Both, a commercial pilot, will deliver a keynote patient story comparing aviation’s Crew Resource Management (CRM) with health care’s TeamSTEPPS, both aimed at improving communication and teamwork skills to optimize safety. Joe Cappello, a diversion investigator for the DEA, and Kimberly Brill, the DEA diversion group supervisor for Minnesota, will present on diversion and answer your questions about when and how to report diversion. Other topics include newer insulins, direct oral anticoagulants and medication reconciliation.   

To learn more and register, view the conference brochure or event pagereturn to top   

AHA members encouraged to complete Lean survey

Approximately six weeks ago, American Hospital Association (AHA) members received a request from the CLEAR Institute to participate in a short survey about Lean management. The survey is designed to gather data for a study being conducted by Professor Stephen M. Shortell at the University of California – Berkley in collaboration with the AHA.   

The survey is to be completed by an organization’s chief medical officer or equivalent and is estimated to take three to 20 minutes. The deadline to complete the survey has been extended to July 31.   

MHA encourages members, including members that use Lean management principles, as well as those that have not adopted that program, to participate in the survey. The study will generate valuable insights for all participants, as well as important information for MHA’s and AHA’s ongoing activities on behalf of members.   

For additional details about accessing the survey, please refer to the invitation from CLEAR Institute or contact AHA’s survey support resources at surveysupport@aha.org or 800-530-9092. To learn more, view the sample invitation. return to top   

New Medicaid face-to-face documentation requirements effective July 1

As of July 1, face-to-face documentation requirements expanded to home health services covered by Medicaid per federal legislation. Legislation passed as part of the health and human services omnibus finance bill contains specific direction for Minnesota in coming into compliance with this new federal mandate.   

The language states that a face-to-face encounter by a qualifying provider must be completed for all home health services regardless of the need for prior authorization, except when providing a one-time perinatal visit by skilled nursing. The face-to-face encounter may occur through telemedicine as defined in statute. The encounter must be related to the primary reason the recipient requires home health services and must occur within the 90 days before or the 30 days after the start of services. The face-to-face encounter may be conducted by one of the following practitioners, licensed in Minnesota: 

  • Physician 
  • Nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist 
  • Certified nurse midwife 
  • Physician assistant 

Learn more from the Minnesota HomeCare Associationreturn to top