MHA Today | May 13, 2020

MHA Today: News for Healthcare Leaders

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May 13, 2020

MHA Today is provided as a service to members of the Missouri Hospital Association. Additional information is available online at MHAnet.


In This Issue
General Assembly Limits Health Care Provider Liability
State Legislators Approve Licensure Legislation
General Assembly Approves Legislation Relating To Victims Of Sexual Offenses
Missouri Medicaid Caseload Growth Accelerates

MHA Distributes Final Wage Index, Occupational Mix Data For Review
HRSA Releases Rural Communities Opioid Response Program – $200K Planning Grants
NIHCM Highlights Increase In Mortality Rates Involving Stimulants
Parkland Health Center Names New President



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Advocate
state and federal health policy developments


General Assembly Limits Health Care Provider Liability

Staff Contact: Daniel Landon or Rob Monsees

The General Assembly has completed its enactment of Senate Bill 591. The legislation creates a more rigorous threshold for awarding punitive damages in lawsuits against health care providers and others. Also, it bars lawsuits against health care providers based on the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act if the claim could be brought as a medical malpractice lawsuit. Passing the legislation was a top priority for MHA to curb the increasing prevalence of lawsuits seeking punitive damages, which are not covered by medical liability insurance.

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State Legislators Approve Licensure Legislation

Staff Contact: Rob Monsees or Bill Anderson

The General Assembly has enacted House Bill 2046, which is a compilation of a variety of topics related loosely to state licensure functions. Among other changes, the legislation limits the need for investigations by a coroner or medical examiner of routine hospice deaths, revises standards for the electronic death registration system, expands interstate reciprocity of various occupational licenses, and authorizes a new class of pharmacy license for “charitable pharmacies.”

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General Assembly Approves Legislation Relating To Victims Of Sexual Offenses

Staff Contact: Bill Anderson

The Missouri House voted overwhelmingly to give final approval to Senate Bill 569, which includes numerous provisions relating to victims of sexual offenses. The legislation provides for electronic tracking of rape kits, establishment of a central state repository for collected kits, a bill of rights for sexual assault victims and requirements related to the collection of forensic evidence in hospitals. MHA testified in favor of the provisions that provide for electronic tracking of rape kits. The creation of a central repository ensures that hospitals no longer will be the de facto storage location for unreported rape kits. This bill also includes the establishment of a statewide telehealth network for sexual assault forensic examinations to attempt to improve access to nurses and other medical providers with highly specialized training in the collection of sexual assault forensic evidence. The bill now is enacted and will be sent to the governor for his review and signature.

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Missouri Medicaid Caseload Growth Accelerates

Staff Contact: Brian Kinkade

The Missouri Medicaid caseload grew by 42,735 to 905,601. Parents grew by 7%, kids by 4.3% and most surprisingly, the number of disabled participants grew by 6.3%.

This increase is 2½ times greater than any one month increase Missouri has had in the 16-year history for which the department currently is reporting caseload data. The next largest increase was 17,695 in March 2015 corresponding to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The greatest one-month increase during the Great Recession was 6,885 in May 2009.

Although the magnitude of the growth is remarkable, growth in the caseload was expected. To qualify for a 6.2% increase in federal matching funds available to the state under the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act, the state is not allowed to remove persons from Medicaid coverage unless they move to another state, die or request that their coverage end. Also, because Medicaid is an income-tested program, the deteriorating economy and massive unemployment caused by COVID-19 shut-down orders is increasing the number of citizens qualifying for coverage.

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MHA Distributes Final Wage Index, Occupational Mix Data For Review

Staff Contact: Andrew Wheeler

MHA released an analysis of the hospital wage index and occupational mix data that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will use to develop the federal fiscal year 2021 Medicare hospital wage index. Hospitals can review their hospital-specific data and submit correction requests until Friday, May 29. Requests and supporting documentation for corrections should be directed to CMS and the Medicare Administrative Contractor. Requests for corrections are limited to situations involving errors by CMS or the MAC that the hospitals could not have known about before the review of the final April public use files. MHA posted the files to HIDI Analytic Advantage® for review.

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Quality and Population Health


HRSA Releases Rural Communities Opioid Response Program – $200K Planning Grants

Staff Contact: Shawn Billings

The Human Resources and Services Administration recently released a funding opportunity under the Rural Communities Opioid Response Program – Planning. RCORP is a multi-year HRSA initiative with the goal of reducing morbidity and mortality resulting from substance use disorder, including opioid use disorder, in high-risk rural communities. This funding opportunity will advance RCORP-Planning’s overall goal by strengthening and expanding the capacity of rural communities to provide SUD/OUD prevention, treatment and recovery services. Total program funding is estimated at $10 million dollars, with 50 awards expected.

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NIHCM Highlights Increase In Mortality Rates Involving Stimulants

Staff Contact: Shawn Billings

A new Data Insights published by the National Institute For Health Care Management highlights the rapid rise in overdose deaths involving cocaine and methamphetamine, illustrates the geographic variations in utilization and death rates, and quantifies the increasing burden that these drugs are placing on the hospital system. Key findings include the following.

  • As the number of opioid overdose deaths soared from 17,268 to 45,865 throughout the 2008-2018 period, stimulants increasingly were involved in these deaths as well.
  • In 2008, only 2.5% of all opioid deaths (436/17,268) had co-involvement of methamphetamine. A decade later, this share had grown to 13.6% (6,260/45,865) for a 10-year increase of more than 440%.

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CEO Announcements


Parkland Health Center Names New President

Staff Contact: Carol Boessen

Annette Schnabel has been named president of Parkland Health Center in Farmington and Bonne Terre, effective May 11. She succeeds Tom Karl who retired after 35 years of service at Parkland Health Center, including having served the last nine years as president. Schnabel previously served as president and CEO of Perry Memorial Hospital in Princeton, Ill., and prior to that held numerous leadership roles at Hospital Sisters Health System. A list of CEO changes is available online.

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Consider This ...

Suicide Safe is a free mobile app that helps providers integrate suicide prevention strategies into their practice and address suicide risk among their patients. The app is based on SAMHSA's Suicide Assessment Five-Step Evaluation and Triage (SAFE-T) card.

Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration