Minnesota Hospital Association


July 30, 2018

MHA Newsline: July 30, 2018

In this issue 

Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center honored with MHA Innovation of the Year in Patient Care Award

MHA on June 1 honored innovative programs and outstanding leaders in health care at its 34th annual awards ceremony.   

Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center received the MHA Innovation of the Year in Patient Care Award in the small hospital category, which recognizes hospitals for developing innovative ways to meet the needs of patients and ensure that they are delivering safe and high-quality care.   

Avera Marshall was recognized for its implementation of Zero Suicide, a key concept of the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention that offers tools and strategies aimed at preventing suicide. Every patient identified as being at-risk is closely followed and reengaged at every encounter.   

In the fall of 2015, Avera was among early facilities nationwide to launch a program, and Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center's Behavioral Health program has been involved in this initiative from the ground up. Efforts have included consistent staff training on key elements including screening assessments, safety planning and means restriction; consistent and standardized use of assessment tools; and post-discharge calls. Avera Marshall offered the QPRT Suicide Risk Assessment and Management Training Program to all employees who have contact with behavioral health patients, from front desk receptionists to providers.   

In collaboration with Western Mental Health, Avera Marshall will serve as a demonstration site in southwestern Minnesota for Zero Suicide. Avera Marshall attended Minnesota's Zero Suicide Academy after being recognized as the first hospital in the state to launch a Zero Suicide Initiative and to share lessons learned.   

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

Fairview Northland Medical Center care team member receives MHA’s Good Catch for Patient Safety Award

A Fairview Northland Medical Center care team member has received the award that recognizes hospital professionals who demonstrate their commitment to keeping patients safe by speaking up to prevent a potential patient safety issue.   

Radiologic technologist Katie Forseth accepted the quarterly Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) Good Catch for Patient Safety Award at a presentation on July 19.   

Forseth was reviewing the images and report for a patient with a brain bleed. She noticed that it appeared the brain bleed was caused by a skull fracture that was not noted in the initial report. Forseth consulted with the doctor and radiologist, who confirmed that she was correct. Her actions helped ensure that the patient’s condition was fully understood.   

“It is because of actions taken every day by dedicated professionals like Katie that Minnesota hospitals continue to be front-runners in patient safety,” said MHA Vice President of Quality and Patient Safety Tania Daniels. “Katie’s efforts remind us what a difference each person can make to keep patients safe.”  

The Good Catch for Patient Safety program recognizes hospital professionals for actions that protect patients. All award winners are entered into the running to receive the quarterly Good Catch for Patient Safety Award. Quarterly winners are eligible to be honored with the annual Good Catch for Patient Safety Award presented at the MHA Annual Awards banquet.   

Visit the MHA website to complete nominate an employee or team for the award. To learn more, contact Tania Daniels, 651-603-3517, or Dr. Rahul Koranne, MHA’s chief medical officer, 651-659-1445. return to top   

Three MHA members among PIPELINE awardees

Alomere Health, Fairview Health Services and Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare in late June were among 41 companies to receive a combined $2.1 million in PIPELINE (Private Investment, Public Education, Labor and Industry Experience) Program grants for employment-based dual-training.  

The PIPELINE program targets high-growth industry sectors: manufacturing, agriculture, and information services, in addition to health care. However, three-fourths of the applicants and awardees were in the manufacturing sector.   

Learn more about the PIPELINE program on the Department of Labor and Industry’s websitereturn to top   

MHA’s Annual Meeting Sept. 19-21 to include speakers Ian Morrison, Tom Morris

MHA's Annual Meeting, themed “Preparing for Innovation and Disruption,” will be held Sept. 19-21 at Madden’s on Gull Lake in Brainerd. For more information, download the conference brochure. To register, visit MHA’s website, log in, click “Calendar of Events” and select the program title to register.   

Ian Morrison, Ph.D., is an internationally known author, consultant and futurist specializing in long-term forecasting and planning with emphasis on health care and the changing business environment. His presentation, “The Future of the Health Care Marketplace: What’s Next?” will focus on the political, economic and strategic context of change in health care; describe the possible scenarios we face; and examine how various actors are preparing for the future.   

Tom Morris, Ph.D., chairman of the Morris Institute for Human Values, is one of the world’s top public philosophers and pioneering business thinkers. His presentation, “Creating the Conditions for Innovation,” uses insights of the most creative thinkers in history to show you how you can encourage not just small innovations that improve products and services, but also the big breakthroughs, the great insights and the revolutionary perspectives that will keep your organization thriving, regardless of the ups and downs of the market and economy. return to top   

CMS proposes additional 340B program payment cuts

The hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) proposed rule for calendar year (CY) 2019 was released on July 25. In it CMS proposes to extend cuts for drugs acquired under the 340B program. Specifically, CMS proposes to extend the Average Sale Price (ASP) minus 22.5 percent payment rate for drugs acquired under the 340B program called for in the CY 2018 OPPS rule to 340B drugs furnished in non-excepted off-campus provider-based departments of hospitals that are paid under the Physician Fee Schedule. The policy would not apply to critical access hospitals (CAHs), rural sole community hospitals, children’s hospitals or PPS-exempt cancer hospitals. CMS estimates that this payment change would result in a cut of $48.5 million in CY 2019.   

CMS also proposes to pay for separately payable biosimilars acquired under the 340B program at a rate of ASP minus 22.5 percent of the biosimilar's own ASP rather than ASP minus 22.5 percent of the reference product's ASP. In addition, CMS would pay for new drugs and biological products at a rate of the wholesale acquisition cost (WAC) plus 3 percent, instead of WAC plus 6 percent, before ASP data is available.  

Like the previous cuts to the 340B program, the hospital community believes the cuts exceed CMS’ statutory authority and remain subject to legal challenge.   

MHA will be submitting comments on the proposed OPPS rule, which are due Sept. 24. With questions or comments, contact Joe Schindler, vice president of finance, MHA, 651-659-1415. return to top   

Congressional committee holds hearing on 340B legislative proposals

The Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee recently held a hearing on 340B-related legislative proposals. Many of the legislative proposals and bills discussed would drastically reduce 340B program payments to certain hospitals. These legislative proposals included a bill to tie the discount to a hospital's uninsured patients, a bill to strengthen hospital auditing requirements and a bill to mandate for some 340B providers to pass on all savings from the discounts to their low-income patients.   

Legislation to restore the cuts called for by the CY 2018 OPPS rule was also discussed, including a bill introduced by Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA). In addition to restoring the 2018 payment cut, it would define how drug manufacturers should calculate the ceiling price for the drugs in the discount and require the Department of Health and Human Services to share the 340B ceiling prices with providers. The bill would also codify the 340B program's intent "to stretch scarce federal resources as far as possible, reaching more eligible patients and providing more comprehensive services."   

During the hearing, Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) unveiled a legislative proposal to raise the minimum Medicare disproportionate share hospital (DSH) adjustment percentage for hospitals to participate in the 340B program from 11.75 percent to 18 percent, which is estimated to result in over half of the hospitals participating in the 340B program losing eligibility.   

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee has held a few hearings and will continue to hold 340B-related hearings in the fall. However, Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) has not announced when the committee will release any legislation.   

MHA will continue to work with Sens. Smith and Klobuchar and the House delegation to protect the 340B program and its goal to enable hospitals to stretch scarce resources as far as possible to help more patients. return to top