Minnesota Hospital Association


October 02, 2017

MHA Newsline: Oct. 2, 2017

In this issue 

Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital, Regions Hospital earn CHAIN Awards Park

Nicollet Methodist Hospital in Minneapolis and Regions Hospital in St. Paul on Sept. 27 received CHAIN Awards for Excellence, which commend the infection prevention and antibiotic stewardship efforts of health care teams working to build safer health care environments. The awards are presented annually by the Collaborative Healthcare-Associated Infection Network (CHAIN).   

Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital received the CHAIN Award for its Park Nicollet Infection Prevention and Control Service.   

Appropriate specimen testing is a key component of preventing healthcare-acquired Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) and supporting antibiotic stewardship, which includes promoting the appropriate use of antibiotics. Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital had a nurse-driven CDI testing protocol prompted by an electronic health record (EHR) software system alert, but this protocol sometimes resulted in avoidable testing, overdiagnosis of CDI and unnecessary antibiotic administration.   

To enhance appropriate CDI testing and antibiotic prescribing, the hospital collaborated with nurses, providers, infection preventionists and lab staff members to replace the nurse-driven CDI testing protocol and instead require a provider order and completion of a brief clinical checklist before CDI testing occurred. Infection preventionists and lab staff members assessed all inpatient specimens submitted for CDI testing to ensure appropriate criteria were met and followed up with providers if tests were unnecessarily ordered. Additional alerts were developed in the EHR system to automatically prompt when CDI testing was not recommended or when a patient should be reassessed because a test order was over 48 hours old. The EHR was also enhanced so recent patient data populated when a provider entered an order for CDI testing.   

As a result of these interventions, CDI test orders decreased from 152 per month to an average of 87 per month. The hospital also improved its accuracy of CDI diagnosis, realizing a 57 percent reduction in lab-identified healthcare-facility onset CDI events. The hospital’s efforts led to enhanced care delivery, patient safety and patient experiences.   

Regions Hospital’s award-winning program will be profiled in next week’s edition of Newsline. return to top  

Draft recommendations on e-health response to opioid crisis sent to Gov. Dayton

The multi-stakeholder Minnesota E-health Advisory Committee submitted its draft recommendations to Gov. Dayton for using e-health to prevent and respond to opioid misuse and overdose, responding to his request earlier this summer. These recommendations cover the areas of: 

  • Overdose and misuse alerts to providers for improved treatment and outcomes 
  • Telehealth for access to tapering off of opioids and other treatment options 
  • Clinical decision support for improved provider and patient joint decision-making 
  • Prior authorization to decrease administrative burden 
  • E-health tools, such as patient portals and personal health records, to provide additional patient resources 

MHA is a member of the E-health Advisory Committee, which is staffed by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and its Office of Health Information Technology. The committee will be reviewing and prioritizing the draft recommendations over the next two months, with final recommendations due in December. If you have comments, questions or suggestions, please contact Mark Sonneborn, vice president, health information and analytics, MHA, 651-659-1423.   

Related to this, two new e-prescribing resources are now available on MDH’s e-prescribing webpage. The FAQ for e-Prescribing of Controlled Substances (EPCS) provides general information on EPCS and the Minnesota e-Prescribing Mandate Fact Sheet summarizes the Minnesota Statutes 62J.42 that require the e-prescribing of all prescriptions including controlled substances. EPCS helps to reduce fraud and abuse of controlled substance and is one way to use e-health to prevent and respond to the opioid misuse and overdose. return to top   

Health information, reimbursement, documentation programs scheduled Oct. 25 and 26

Two upcoming health information, reimbursement and documentation programs will feature health care consultant Jean Ann Hartzell Minzey, who has worked with physicians, clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies and ambulatory surgery centers as an educator, lecturer and manager for the past 29 years.   

On Oct. 25, “CPT Updates 2018” will prepare attendees for changes to the hospital revenue cycle effective Jan. 1, 2018. For more information or to register, download the brochure or visit the MHA website.   

On Oct. 26, “Critical Access Hospitals: Reimbursement, Documentation, Swing Beds and More” will explore ways critical access hospitals (CAHs) can partner with larger facilities to provide transitions of care for patients returning to their homes and share strategies many CAHs are implementing to provide additional services not otherwise accessible to rural residents. For more information or to register, download the brochure or visit the MHA website.  

Both programs will be held at the Radisson Hotel in Roseville. return to top   

PFE workshop coming to southwest Minnesota

A workshop designed to help hospitals meet the goals for patient and family engagement (PFE) set forth under the Partnership for Patients initiative will be held at the Redwood Area Community Center in Redwood Falls on Nov. 7 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.   

Patient- and family-centered care is a key strategy for delivering better care and achieving improved patient experience at a lower cost. This workshop will provide strategies, resources, networking and tools for hospitals to create and maintain a culture of patient- and family-centered care. Leaders and staff interested in exploring or strengthening PFE efforts are welcome. Patient partners from patient and family advisory councils (PFAC) are invited. The workshop content is suitable for hospitals at any stage of the PFE journey.   

The workshop is free and open to participants from across Minnesota. For more information or to register, download the brochure or visit the MHA websitereturn to top   

Apply for 2018 Rural Hospital Planning and Transition Grant Program

Applications are now being accepted for the Minnesota Department of Health’s (MDH) Rural Hospital Planning and Transition Grant Program.   

Grant funds provide support to small hospitals in developing strategic plans for improving access to health services or implementing transition projects to modify the type and extent of services provided, based on an existing plan.   

Approximately $250,000 is available for grant contracts. A grant to a hospital, including hospitals that submit applications as a consortium member, may not exceed $45,000. In recent years the average grant amount has been between $25,000 and $35,000.   

Applicants must certify that at least one-half of the total cost of the project will be matched from non-state sources. For example, if the total cost of the proposed project is $60,000, no more than $30,000 can be awarded in grant funds from this program. The match may include in-kind services.   

Applications are due Nov. 3. Visit the MDH website to access the application guidance and forms. For more information, contact Craig Baarson, Office of Rural Health and Primary Care, MDH, 651-201-3840. return to top   

Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center COO earns MAHV award

Mike Larson, chief operating officer of Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd, on Sept. 21 received the 2017 Heart of Minnesota Senior Leadership of the Year Award from the Minnesota Association of Healthcare Volunteers (MAHV). The award is presented annually to a deserving health care administrator nominated by his or her facility.   

“Mike supports all of the auxiliary’s functions and makes an example to the rest of the leadership staff by encouraging and supporting what we do,” said Joan Spaeth, MAHV awards chair. “All volunteers are invited to a special event to thank and recognize them for their service. He treats the volunteers like employees and allows them to feel free to stop in any time to just say hello or discuss topics they feel passionate about. He makes the volunteers feel appreciated and valued.” return to top