Minnesota Hospital Association


November 27, 2017

MHA Newsline: Nov. 27, 2017

In this issue 

DHS issues Mental Health Innovation Grant Program RFP

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) today issued a request for proposals (RFP) for a qualified grantee to improve accessibility and quality of community-based outpatient mental health services and reduce admissions to and stays beyond medical necessity in regional treatment centers and Community Behavioral Health Hospitals. The development of this grant program was one of MHA’s top priorities during the 2017 legislative session.    

Eligible applicants include counties, tribes, mental health service providers, hospitals or community partnerships. Half of all grants will be awarded to eligible applicants in the metropolitan area and half to eligible applicants outside the metropolitan area. Work is proposed to start in January 2018.   

Responses to the RFP are due no later than 4 p.m. on Jan. 8, 2018. Instructions for submission are outlined in the RFP.   

A RFP responders’ conference will be held Dec. 6 at 1:30 p.m. at the Elmer L. Anderson Human Services Building, Room 2333, 540 Cedar Street, St. Paul, MN 55155. Attendance is not mandatory but is recommended. Responders may attend via conference call; contact Amanda Calmbacher, Mental Health Division, DHS, 651-503-4050, for more information.   

To learn more, visit the DHS website or contact Amanda Calmbacher, 651-503-4050. return to top   

Winter Trustee Conference receives approval for continuing education for nursing home administrators

Hotel nearing capacity for accommodations   

The content of the Winter Trustee Conference has been approved by the Minnesota Board of Examiners for Nursing Home Administrators for up to eight clock hours.   

The conference is scheduled for Jan. 12-14 at the Marriott Minneapolis Northwest in Brooklyn Park. To learn more, view the brochure.   

The Minneapolis Marriott Northwest is nearing capacity for overnight accommodations, so please reserve soon if you plan to stay overnight. Make your reservation online or call the Marriott at 763-536-8300. return to top   

MHA, other hospital associations to file brief in lawsuit opposing 340B cuts

MHA and other hospital associations around the country are joining together to prepare and file a brief as amicus curiae, or friend-of-the-court brief, in the federal court case filed by the American Hospital Association (AHA) in opposition to recent cuts to 340B hospitals imposed by the Trump administration.    

The new proposal cuts Medicare payments to some hospitals for non-pass-through, separately payable drugs and biologics purchased under the 340B Program and dispensed to 340B hospital outpatients. Payments will be reduced from the current rate of Average Sales Price (ASP) plus 6 percent to ASP minus 22.5 percent. The cut will not apply in 2018 to Critical Access Hospitals, children’s hospitals and certain other specialty hospitals.    

In order to provide additional information to the attorneys preparing the amicus brief, MHA sent a survey to the presidents of potentially affected hospitals seeking information about the potential impact of the cuts on specific hospitals. Survey responses are due by tomorrow, Nov. 28.   

The AHA case has been filed in the United States District Court of the District of Columbia and captioned The American Hospital Association, et al. v. Eric D. Hargan.   

For additional information about the case or 340B cuts, please contact Ben Peltier, vice president, legal and federal affairs, MHA, 651-603-3513. return to top   

House Ways and Means Committee reaches bipartisan agreement on Medicare extenders

The House Ways and Means Committee has reached a bipartisan agreement on a package of Medicare extenders and identified offsets for the cost of the expiring provisions, including modifying Medicare payments for Critical Access Hospital (CAH) swing beds. Under the agreement, Medicare payments for CAH swing beds would be reduced from 101 percent of reasonable costs to 100 percent of reasonable costs.   

The agreement would extend the Medicare-Dependent Hospital (MDH) and Low-Volume Adjustment programs for two years and add-on payments for ground ambulance and rural home health services for five years. The annual Medicare limit on per-patient therapy expenditures would be permanently repealed.   

MHA supports straight extensions of the MDH and Low-Volume Adjustment programs and repeal of the therapy caps; however, the provisions should not be paid for with Medicare payment cuts to rural hospitals.   

The Senate Finance Committee agreed to a similar package of Medicare extenders, but did not identify offsets. Medicare extenders will likely be included in a large end-of-the-year legislative package. MHA will continue to update members as Medicare extenders move through Congress. return to top   

AHA NOVA Award applications due Dec. 8

The American Hospital Association (AHA) invites hospitals and health systems partnering with community organizations to help residents be healthier to apply for the AHA NOVA Award. The award recognizes effective, collaborative programs focused on improving community health status.   

CHI St. Gabriel’s Health in Little Falls received a 2017 AHA NOVA Award for its Morrison County Community-Based Care Coordination program. The award was featured in the Aug. 7 issue of Newsline.   

Other previous award recipients have organized a health and wellness alliance to fight childhood asthma, operated a mobile medical clinic to serve lower-income children and worked with community partners to expand emergency and preventive dental care for uninsured residents.   

The application deadline is Dec. 8. Awards will be presented at the 2018 AHA Leadership Summit in San Diego. Learn more and apply on the AHA websitereturn to top