Minnesota Hospital Association


March 24, 2014

MHA Newsline: March 24, 2014

In this issue

Hospital spotlight: Ridgeview-supported transportation service helps patients access needed services

Ridgeview Medical Center understands that patients often face challenges finding transportation to and from appointments. That’s why the hospital funds WeCAB (Community Area Busing) transportation service, a volunteer-based nonprofit organization that provides low-cost transport service to area residents. The hospital stepped up to fund the WeCAB pilot program after a survey showed that half of local residents polled had trouble making it to their appointments at Ridgeview due to transportation issues. Since 2011, WeCAB has provided more than 3,000 rides for patients. Learn more about how Ridgeview is ensuring patients are able to access care. return to top  

MHA to launch new, online Member Center

MHA expects to roll out a new Member Center on the MHA website in the coming weeks. As a member of MHA, you will have exclusive access to a number of member-only benefits. The Member Center is your connection to MHA, allowing you to manage your contact information, register for upcoming events and programs, search for MHA hospitals and employee members, and access member-only resources and documents. Watch your inbox for a personalized email alerting you to your username and providing a link to reset your password if you are unsure what it is.  

For questions, contact Ashley Gauster, MHA member services and communications specialist, 651-603-3545. return to top 

New demonstration projects announced

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) announced new contracts with three organizations to participate in its Integrated Health Partnerships (IHPs), formerly referred to as Health Care Delivery System (HCDS) demonstration projects. The new contracts with Hennepin Healthcare System, Mayo Clinic Rochester, and Southern Prairie Community Care are designed to explore total cost-of-care or shared risk/gain arrangements in state public programs.  

Southern Prairie Community Care is a unique rural model developed through a joint powers agreement among 12 counties in southwestern Minnesota.  

Six other organizations began similar demonstrations in 2013. Combined, the nine IHPs will serve approximately 150,000 Minnesotans enrolled in Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare.  

MHA has been a strong champion of the IHP approach. Lawrence Massa, MHA president and CEO said, “The IHP demonstrations are home-grown health care reform initiatives that recognize the hazards of a one-size-fits-all approach, and instead, offer DHS and health care providers the flexibility to tailor the incentives and financing to the unique capacities and needs of individual communities.”  

For more information about the IHP demonstration projects, visit the DHS website. return to top  

DHS offers presumptive eligibility timeline

Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Lucinda Jesson along with leaders from her agency met with MHA to explain the projected timeline for presumptive eligibility (PE) implementation. DHS intends to submit a required State Plan Amendment to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) by mid-April; begin offering online training for interested hospitals in June; and be prepared to certify hospitals to conduct PE determinations for patients believed to be eligible for, but not yet enrolled in, Medical Assistance (Medicaid).  

Lawrence Massa, MHA president and CEO said, “Hospitals are eager to have PE available as a way to provide coverage for low-income and medically vulnerable patients. The majority of patients enrolled through PE will seek emergency department services. By getting them enrolled, we can make sure they have access to the follow-up and preventative care they will need after leaving the hospital.”  

The Affordable Care Act required states to have a PE process in place by Jan. 1, 2014. Although Minnesota’s program will be late, MHA is pleased that DHS is devoting resources and attention to the issue.  

“Our residents and hospitals need this avenue available as soon as we can, and MHA has made it clear to DHS that we will help make that happen any way we can,” said Massa.  

For more information about the PE process, contact Matt Anderson, MHA vice president of regulatory and strategic affairs, 651-359-1421. return to top  

Reminder: new reporting requirements for adverse health events

Effective Oct. 7, 2013, there are new adverse health event reporting requirements for all hospitals and licensed surgery centers in Minnesota. Legislation in 2013 created four new adverse health events reportable to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), modified, deleted and combined others. There are now 29 reportable events in Minnesota.  

The following new reportable events are reportable if they occur anytime after Oct. 7, 2013:

  • Death or serious injury of a patient associated with the introduction of a metallic object into the MRI area;
  • Death or serious injury of a neonate associated with labor or delivery in a low-risk pregnancy (this includes still births that occur after a patient is admitted to the hospital; excludes stillbirths that occur prior to arrival at the hospital, and excludes clavicle fracture due to shoulder dystocia);
  • The irretrievable loss of an irreplaceable biological specimen; and
  • Patient death or serious injury resulting from the failure to follow up or communicate laboratory, pathology, or radiology test results.

Additional definitional guidance can be found in the “Recommendations and Guidance Document” on the MDH website. If you have questions about whether or not an event is reportable, please contact Rachel Jokela, MDH adverse health event program director, or Julie Apold, MHA senior director of patient safety. return to top  

CMS releases Medicare Care Choices Model request for applications

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation has published a request for applications for its Medicare Care Choices Model. The model leverages established relationships between hospices and their referring networks to allow Medicare to test and evaluate this care coordination concept. The Care Choices Model seeks to test whether traditional Medicare beneficiaries with certain types of advanced cancers, congestive heart failure (CHF), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who meet Medicare hospice eligibility requirements under either the Medicare or Medicaid Hospice Benefit would elect to receive hospice supportive services earlier in their disease trajectories if they could continue to seek curative services. The model will evaluate whether there are associated improvements in patient care, patient and family or caregiver satisfaction with care, and quality of life at the end-of-life.   Applications are due June 19, 2014. The notice is available here. return to top  

Conference connects the pieces for primary care providers to identify and manage substance use disorders

Hazelden Professionals in Residence (PIR) program presents a multi-day conference that will help improve identification and management of substance use disorders in the primary care setting. Primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, residents, fellows, and psychiatrists will find this educational event thought-provoking and directly applicable to their everyday work. The conference will help primary care providers recognize whether they have the tools to help patients with substance use issues. Participants will learn:

  • How to safely prescribe opiates and monitor for misuse and addiction
  • How the Affordable Care Act affects primary care and addiction management
  • How to screen, diagnose and manage substance use disorders in your primary care practice

Speakers include Hazelden Chief Medical Officer Marvin Seppala, MD, and Las Vegas Recovery Center VP of Medical Affairs and Medical Director Mel Pohl, MD, FASAM, as well as many other national experts in addiction medicine. 

The preconference takes place June 19 and the conference is June 20-21 at the Radisson Blu of Mall of American in Bloomington. Learn more or register here. CMEs available. return to top  

Register for the 2014 ICSI Colloquium by April 8 and save

The Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (ICSI) will hold its Annual Colloquium May 5-7 at Saint Paul RiverCentre. Four tracks will support the conference theme of Building a Sustainable Health System:

  1. Care delivery/quality improvement
  2. Affordability/financial alignment
  3. Patient engagement/community partnerships
  4. Leadership/innovation

Keynote speakers include Craig Brammer, CEO of Greater Cincinnati Health Council, and Kerri Sparling, author of the widely read diabetes blog Six Until Me. There are also three preconference workshops available. Participants can attend the workshops without attending the Colloquium:

  1. Unlocking Your Organization’s Internal Capacities Through Relationally Coordinated Teams
  2. Orchestrating Care for Better Patient Experience
  3. Quality Improvement Basics Plus!

Learn more and register on ICSI’s website. return to top