MHA Today | June 22, 2016

June 22, 2016
MHA Today: News for Healthcare Leaders

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In This Issue
Governor Approves Expanded Access To Naloxone
U.S. House Republicans Unveil “Repeal and Replace” Plan
CMS Releases The 2016 Medicare Trustees Report
MO HealthNet Posts Reminder Of Quit Smoking Benefits
TJC Proposes New Outcome Standards For Behavioral Health
TJC Releases Updates On Texting And Antimicrobial Stewardship
CDC Recommendations For Zika IgM Antibody Testing

Advocate
state and federal health policy developments


Governor Approves Expanded Access To Naloxone

Staff Contact: Daniel Landon

Governor Jay Nixon has approved state legislation that expands the ability to dispense, possess or use naloxone hydrochloride as an emergency antidote to overdoses of opioids. It also includes liability protections. The bill is H.B. 1568.

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U.S. House Republicans Unveil “Repeal and Replace” Plan

Staff Contact: Daniel Landon

The Republican caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives has released its plan for “repealing and replacing” the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 in 2017. The plan is in the form of a white paper rather than detailed legislation. Among many other proposed changes, it would repeal a moratorium on new or expanded physician-owned hospitals and the ACA’s authorization of the “Bay-State Boondoggle,” which manipulates the Medicare wage index system to disadvantage Missouri and many other states.

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CMS Releases The 2016 Medicare Trustees Report

Staff Contact: Andrew Wheeler

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced the release of the 2016 Medicare Trustees Report, which projects that the Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds will be depleted in 2028. The growth in per-Medicare enrollee spending continues to remain low, averaging 1.3 percent over the last 5 years. In 2014, Medicare provided health care to 53.8 million people with expenditures amounting to $613 billion. The Chief Actuary also released a document concluding that Medicare spending on average will fall below a spending target throughout a five-year period, meaning that the Independent Payment Advisory Board requirements under the Affordable Care Act are not triggered. The Medicare spending per-Medicare beneficiary increased 2 percent in 2014. CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt stated “growth in per-Medicare enrollee costs continues to be historically low even as the economy continues to rebound. While this is good news, we cannot be complacent as the number of Medicare beneficiaries continues to grow. That’s why we must continue to transform our health care system into one that delivers better care and spends our dollars in a smarter way for beneficiaries so Medicare can continue to meet the needs of our beneficiaries for the next 50 years and beyond”. MHA also has published an issue brief with additional details.

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MO HealthNet Posts Reminder Of Quit Smoking Benefits

Staff Contact: Steve Renne

MO HealthNet recipients are eligible to receive free nicotine gum or patches from a health care provider as a covered benefit. Also, Missourians may contact the Missouri Tobacco Quitline for assistance at 1-800-QUIT-NOW.

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Regulatory News
the latest actions of agencies monitoring health care


TJC Proposes New Outcome Standards For Behavioral Health

Staff Contact: Sarah Willson

The Joint Commission is developing new proposed outcome measures for CTS.03.01.09, which states the “organization assesses the outcomes of care, treatment or services provided to the individual served.” The proposed standard revision would require Behavioral Health Care organizations to assess individual outcomes through the use of a standardized tool or instrument. Comments will be gathered for 6 weeks beginning June 20, 2016, and ending Aug. 1, 2016.

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TJC Releases Updates On Texting And Antimicrobial Stewardship

Staff Contact: Sarah Willson

Yesterday, The Joint Commission released two new updates. This spring, TJC reversed its ban on texting of medical orders citing improvements in technology that would secure all messaging of information. TJC will delay the repeal until it can create additional guidance on appropriate texting policies, according to an article in the July issue of Joint Commission Perspectives. TJC and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will be collaborating on a set of FAQs and hope to publish additional guidance by September. TJC also will release a new antimicrobial stewardship standard in July. This follows the recently proposed CMS rule to update the requirements for hospitals and critical access hospitals. The new Joint Commission standards will become effective Jan. 1, 2017.

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Quality and Population Health


CDC Recommendations For Zika IgM Antibody Testing

Staff Contacts: Jackie Gatz or Alison Williams

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released an official Health Update regarding Zika virus testing. Testing for Zika virus infection using real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) molecular assays is now commercially available. When requesting Zika rRT-PCR testing from a commercial laboratory, providers should be aware that commercial laboratories performing rRT-PCR currently do not also offer Zika IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) or confirmatory serologic testing (plaque reduction neutralization test, or PRNT). Therefore, if possible, providers should store a serum aliquot for subsequent Zika IgM ELISA testing if the rRT-PCR assay is negative. Otherwise, collection of an additional serum sample may be necessary. Further information on Zika virus specimen collection andinterim guidance for Zika virus testing of urine also is available.

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Consider This ...

A new study predicts that the federal forecast of national health care spending under President Obama's signature health law was a big overestimate — by $2.6 trillion over a five-year period. The new estimate from the Urban Institute suggests national health spending is on track to reach $4 trillion by 2019.

Source: The Washington Post