Minnesota Hospital Association


September 02, 2014

MHA Newsline: Sept. 2, 2014

In this issue

MN hospitals recognized as Most Wired

Conducted by Hospitals and Health Networks, the 16th annual Health Care’s Most Wired Survey asks hospitals and health systems nationwide to answer questions regarding their IT initiatives. Hospitals that have made gains or improvements by using IT to reduce the likelihood of medical errors, share critical patient information electronically with specialists and other care providers, and enhance their IT systems in ways to support care and delivery improvement are named to the Most Wired list.   

Nineteen Minnesota hospitals and health systems were named to the 2014 Most Wired list: 

  •  Fairview Health Services 
  • HealthPartners
  • Kittson Memorial Healthcare Center 
  • Mahnomen Health Center 
  • Mayo Clinic Rochester Hospital 
  • Park Nicollet Health Services 
  • Perham Health 
  • RiverView Health 
  • Sanford Bagley Medical Center 
  • Sanford Bemidji Medical Center 
  • Sanford Canby Medical Center 
  • Sanford Jackson Medical Center 
  • Sanford Luverne Medical Center 
  • Sanford Thief River Falls Medical Center 
  • Sanford Tracy Medical Center
    Sanford Westbrook Medical Center 
  • Sanford Worthington Medical Center 
  • Windom Area Hospital 
  • Winona Health    

More information can be found here. return to top   

MHA testifies at Legislative Health Care Workforce Commission meeting

The Minnesota Legislative Health Care Workforce Commission invited a panel of education and industry representatives, including the Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA), to offer a high-level overview of the health occupations educated or employed by each sector along with challenges, issues or trends.   

Ann Gibson, MHA vice president of federal relations and workforce, testified that significant transformation is expected in “tomorrow’s” health care workplace. In addition, MHA’s testimony contained a special focus on the study commissioned byTowers Watson, a global professional services company, to understand how our talent pool will fare in the next ten years in two of the largest segments of the health care workforce – registered nurses and primary care physicians.   

MHA encouraged commission members to:   

  • support the development of new care delivery models to relieve demands on primary care; 
  • support increased funding of Minnesota’s Medical Education and Research Costs (MERC) program that helps hospitals and health systems offset higher costs associated with training the next generation of health care professionals; and, 
  • search for additional solutions to help rural providers with their unique recruitment and retention issues.   

View MHA’s complete testimony here.   

The Legislative Health Care Workforce Commission is charged with creating a study and recommendations to the legislature to strengthen the health care workforce. A preliminary report is due by Dec. 31, 2014 and a final report is required by Dec. 31, 2016.   

The final report is required to address current and anticipated work force shortages, incentives available to attract and retain workers, training and residency shortages, and perceptions of primary care among students, among other issues.   

For more information contact, Ann Gibson, MHA vice president of federal relations and workforce at 651-603-3527. return to top  

Political season underway, engage now

With the election just a few months away, this fall provides a great chance to meet with the candidates and get involved in your local campaigns. All 134 seats in the House of Representatives are up for election and it is imperative to reach out to both incumbent legislators and their challengers to brief them on the issues impacting hospitals and share the message about our well-earned national reputation for delivering high quality and low cost care.   

Most important, 15 legislators have announced their retirements, and if your hospital is located in one of those 15 communities, you have an open legislative seat. That means you will have a new legislator come January and one who may need education and background on health care issues. Share information about your hospital, your hospital’s economic impact, patient safety highlights and community benefit activities.   

For more information, access the MHA 2014 Election Tool Kit and the grassroots matching list on the MHA Member Center. The Member Center is username and password protected. Contact Ashley Gauster, MHA member services and communications specialist, 651-603-3545.   

After you meet with legislators and candidates, please let us know how your meeting went. In addition, MHA staff is happy to facilitate your meeting. Contact Kristin Loncorich, MHA government relations director, 651-603-3526 or Mary Krinkie, MHA vice president of government relations, 651-659-1465. return to top     

CMS HCBS rule affects hospital-based services

The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) issued a rule on Jan. 16 governing the characteristics and qualities of all home and community-based settings (HCBS) within which Medical Assistance/Medicaid services are provided, as well as person-centered planning requirements.   

The rule affects hospitals that offer these services in their facilities and, for public hospitals, on the grounds of the facility. In Minnesota, the rule impacts all HCBS waivers – Community Alternative Care (CAC), Community Alternatives for Disabled Individuals (CADI), Developmental Disabilities (DD), Brain Injury (BI), and Elderly Waiver (EW). The rule limits Medicaid waiver coverage for services offered in or near what are deemed “institutions,” including hospitals and nursing homes. This means services such as adult day may no longer be covered when offered in hospitals unless certain requirements are met or an exemption is granted. In addition, residential services, including housing with services and assisted living, cannot be located “on the grounds of, or adjacent to a public institution” unless certain requirements are met or an exemption is granted.   

The rule, effective March 17, 2014, allows states five years to transition into compliance. The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) will release a draft transition plan at the end of September for public comments. In the meantime, members are encouraged to complete the “Questions forListening Sessions” document and return to Jen McNertney, MHA policy analyst.   

For more information, contact Jen McNertney, MHA policy analyst, 651-659-1405. return to top      

Over 1,000 Minnesotans receive Medicaid coverage through HPE

Minnesota’s hospital presumptive eligibility (HPE) program began on July 1 and since then, over 1,000 Minnesotans have received temporary Medicaid services.   

HPE gives qualified hospitals the opportunity to enroll patients they deem eligible into a temporary Medical Assistance (MA) program. The temporary MA program then covers the cost of patient care until the patient enrolls in full MA, is found ineligible for MA, or comes to the end of the HPE coverage time period.    

Since implementation began, over 70 hospitals became qualified to make HPE determinations and 44 hospitals have submitted HPE applications.   

For questions on HPE, contact Jen McNertney, MHA policy analyst, 651-659-1405. return to top      

MDH announces SIM grant RFP

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) requests proposals for the Minnesota Accountable Health Model (SIM) Accountable Communities for Health Grant. Approximately $5.5 million is available to fund up to 15 Accountable Communities for Health. Grants will provide funding to advance the Minnesota Accountable Health Model through improving and expanding necessary infrastructure for Accountable Communities for Health (ACH) implementation and developing a plan to meet ACH requirements.   

Because hospitals and health systems play crucial roles in the health of their communities, the Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) encourages members to consider submitting grant proposals in collaboration with other community stakeholders. As with the Integrated Healthcare Partnership demonstration projects administered by the Minnesota Department of Human Services, MHA strongly supports initiatives that offer hospitals and health systems flexibility and support to redesign how care is delivered, how health is improved and how individuals are engaged.   

To be considered for funding, a required non-binding letter of intent is due to MDH by Friday, Sept. 26 at 4 p.m. and proposals must be received by Monday, Oct. 20 by 4 p.m.   

An optional informational Q & A webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 10 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Click here to register for the complimentary webinar.   

For more information contact Chris Dobbe, MDH health policy, 651-201-3954. return to top