Newsroom

Overview

CHA News
The core of CHA member benefits: the latest information for members

CHA provides timely information to its members on a daily basis through CHA News, issued at 3 p.m. every day, Monday through FridayThis section contains a chronological listing of CHA News articles. For information by topic, please visit the Hospital Topics section.

CHA News Article

GAO Reports on Patient Access to Electronic Health Information

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently issued a report that reviewed the state of patients’ electronic access to their health information. The report found that relatively few patients electronically access their health information when offered the ability to do so and that – while patients generally find access beneficial — there are limitations, such as the inability to aggregate health information from multiple providers into a single record. The GAO recommended that the Department of Health and Human Services develop performance measures to assess outcomes of efforts related to patients’ electronic access to longitudinal health information, and use the information from these measures to help achieve program goals. The full report is available on the GAO website.

CHA News Article

CMS to Host Training Call on Emergency Preparedness Final Rule

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will host a call detailing requirements of its emergency preparedness final rule on April 27 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (PT). During the call, CMS will provide an overview of the regulation and training and testing requirements, and will allow time for a question and answer session. For more information and to register, visit the CMS website.

CHA News Article

CHA Staff Member Named to National Uniform Billing Committee

CHA is pleased to announce that Amber Ott, CHA vice president, finance, has been named to the National Uniform Billing Committee (NUBC). The American Hospital Association formed the NUBC in 1975 to develop and maintain data specifications for institutional claims, including those under HIPPA. Members of the organization include providers and state hospital associations, health plans, public health, health care financial professionals and standards development organizations. The NUBC provides testimony to the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics, which is an advisory body to the Secretary of Health and Human Services on HIPAA standards. CHA is pleased that its members will be represented in this forum.

CHA News Article

EHR Hospital Reports Now Available for CY 2016

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that electronic health record hospital reports for the Inpatient Quality Reporting program are now available for calendar year 2016. Hospitals should visit the QualityNet portal to access their reports and should begin process improvement based on the reporting. Hospitals that were unable to report electronic clinical quality measure data prior to the deadline may request an extraordinary circumstances exemption, which must be submitted by April 1. For more information, see CMS’ recently released guidance, attached.

CHA News Article

CMS to Host Call on IMPACT Act Implementation

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will host a call to discuss efforts to develop, implement and maintain standardized post-acute care patient assessment data — including pilot testing results and plans for the upcoming national field test — as required by the Improving Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014 (IMPACT Act). The IMPACT Act requires standardized patient assessment data and quality reporting measures to be reported by inpatient rehabilitation facilities, long-term care hospitals, skilled-nursing facilities and home health agencies. The call will be held March 29 from 10:30 a.m. to noon (PT), and will include a question and answer session. 

To register or for more information, visit https://blh.ier.intercall.com/.

Overview

News Releases and Media Statements
From the California Hospital Association

For past news releases and media statements, please visit the archive.

Media Statement

California Hospitals Say ACA Replacement Plan Will Likely Result in Significant Reductions in Coverage

The proposed Affordable Care Act (ACA) partial repeal and replacement plan released last night by House Republicans could have negative impacts on California hospitals and the patients they serve. In particular, CHA is concerned about the likelihood of a reduction in coverage that would result from this proposal.

California leads the nation in expanding health care coverage, with 91 percent of all Californians now being covered. The plan’s proposal to restructure Medicaid will likely undo the important gains in coverage that have been made over the past few years. California has the highest poverty rate in the nation. An estimated 6.3 million Californians, including 1.9 million children, live in poverty.

CHA is disheartened by the failure of this plan to restore funding for the Medicare program. Currently, under the ACA, Medicare funding to California hospitals is being cut by more than $26 billion through 2026 in exchange for the promise of expanded coverage. Unless these payments are restored, California hospitals and the patients they serve will likely face a diminution of available health care services.

As the effort to repeal and replace the ACA continues to unfold, CHA looks forward to working with members of the California congressional delegation to maintain optimal coverage for all Californians.

News Release

UC Davis Medical Center CEO Elected 2017 Board Chair of California Hospital Association
Ann Madden Rice Will Guide CHA Through Year of Significant Change

          SACRAMENTO (February 6, 2017) – Ann Madden Rice, CEO of the University of California Davis Medical Center in Sacramento, has been elected 2017 chair of the California Hospital Association (CHA) Board of Trustees. 

News Release

CHA Board of Trustees Announce Retirement of Long-Time President/CEO C. Duane Dauner

SACRAMENTO (December 15, 2016) – Jim Holmes, chair of the boards of the California Association of Hospitals & Health Systems (CAHHS) and California Hospital Association (CHA), announced today that long-time President and Chief Executive Officer, C. Duane Dauner, will retire when his employment agreement ends on December 31, 2018.

News Headlines

Today’s News Headlines

News Headlines Article

Republicans’ alarming proposal would end Medicaid as we know it
Op/Ed:The Washington Post

Congressional Republicans and President Trump want desperately to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a move that would take health insurance away from as many as 32 million Americans over the first decade if there is no replacement plan. These efforts have garnered national attention, with crowds of outraged constituents dominating town hall meetings. But what Trump and the GOP are trying to do below the radar might even be more alarming — ending Medicaid as we know it by imposing a “per-capita” cap or block grant.

This radical plan has nothing to do with the ACA and everything to do with conservatives’ long-standing ideological goal to cap and cut federal Medicaid spending. Medicaid has been a pillar of our health-care system for 52 years and now insures nearly 1 in 5 Americans. A per-capita cap (sending a fixed amount to the states for each beneficiary) or a block grant (sending a fixed amount to the states for their entire program) would be an unprecedented abandonment of federal responsibility by giving states substantially less federal funding than they would get under Medicaid today, with the cuts growing larger each year. That would pass the buck to the states, our health-care safety net and all Americans — and deny care to the most vulnerable among us.

News Headlines Article

Contaminated hospital floors may help to spread infection
Medical News Today

A new study suggests that the floor may be an overlooked source of healthcare-associated infection and may help to spread pathogens such as Clostridium difficile and MRSA though contact with high-touch objects. The researchers call for further research to confirm their findings, which are based on a study of five hospitals.

The team – including researchers from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH – reports the study in the American Journal of Infection Control.

Healthcare-associated infections are infections that patients acquire during admission to a healthcare setting such as a hospital or nursing home. They are a major, but often preventable, threat to patient safety.

News Headlines Article

It’s easy money: Lab offers doctors up to $144,000 a year to push dubious genetic tests, employees say
STAT

For doctors, the brochure from a California medical laboratory sounded like easy money: $30 for every person enrolled in a study of genetic tests meant to help select the best pain medication for each patient. A typical physician could make $144,000 a year in “research fees.”

But the clinical trial was largely a ploy to boost Proove Biosciences’s revenues, and many of the doctors who signed up did no actual work, say current and former employees.

Proove has grown rapidly by tapping into the public angst over surging opioid addiction. It is one of many companies touting personalized DNA-based tests backed by little or no credible scientific data showing their reliability. That’s because a regulatory loophole has left huge swaths of the multibillion-dollar genetic testing industry largely free of government oversight.

News Headlines Article

Why an Early Spring Is Very Bad News for Your Health
TIME

Unless you’ve been living under a climate-controlled rock, you’ve likely noticed the recent unseasonably warm weather. New data from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) shows that spring is indeed coming early this year—up to three weeks ahead of schedule in some regions—which it can have an impact on health, too.

The shift to spring has already happened in the southern Great Plains and the Southeast Atlantic Coast, according to the maps from the USA National Phenology Network, part of the USGS. In Washington, D.C., spring debuted earlier this month—22 days earlier than the long-term average from 1981 to 2010. Spring is also making early appearances in coastal California, southern Nevada and Illinois, southeastern Colorado, central Kansas, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, and Virginia, according to the research, and it will soon hit Philadelphia and Indianapolis.

News Headlines Article

Why the GOP’s alternatives to Obamacare are political time bombs
Los Angeles Times

Republicans came into office this year promising to rescue Americans from rising healthcare bills by repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act.

But the party’s emerging healthcare proposals would shift even more costs to patients, feeding the very problem GOP politicians complained about under Obamacare. And their solutions could hit not only Americans who have Obamacare health plans, but also tens of millions more who rely on employer coverage or on government health plans such as Medicaid and Medicare.

News Headlines Article

Sen. Baucus Says Health Care Reform Can’t Get Political
Bloomberg Record

Max Baucus, former U.S. Ambassador to China and Democratic Senator from Montana, discusses the difficulty in coming to an agreement on health care reform. Bloomberg’s Drew Armstrong joins the conversation on “Bloomberg Daybreak: Americas.”

News Headlines Article

Video Highlights: Trump Promises To Lower Cost Of Health Insurance
Kaiser Health News

In his first address before a joint session of Congress, President Donald Trump called on lawmakers to repeal and replace Obamacare, lower health insurance costs and to “slash the restraints” in the approval process for new drugs. Here are the health care highlights of his speech:

News Headlines Article

Some See ‘Flat-Fee Primary Care’ As A GOP-Friendly Way To Provide Routine Care
National Public Radio

Back in the day, people paid for routine, primary medical care on their own and only used insurance when something serious came up. Some primary care doctors are betting that model can thrive again through a monthly subscription for routine care and a high-deductible insurance policy to take care of the big stuff.

But the changes raise questions about whether that approach really leads to more effective and efficient health care.

It’s easy to understand the appeal of direct primary care, as it’s called, for doctors and patients. Doctors charge a monthly fee, generally from $50 to $150, to provide routine clinical care and consultation, sometimes including basic lab work and tests. Patients who need other care — an MRI or surgery, for example — would be covered by their insurance policy, if they have one.

News Headlines Article

Republicans near make-or-break moment on Obamacare repeal
POLITICO

Republicans are having a break-the-glass moment on Obamacare.

After promising for years to upend the Democratic health care law the first chance they got — and with plans to hold a vote to repeal by early April — the party remains far from consensus. So far, in fact, that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has called a special all-members caucus meeting Wednesday to try and get his rowdy caucus in line.

News Headlines Article

What If You Could Take It With You? Health Insurance, That Is
National Public Radio

Many Republican leaders have promoted the idea that consumers should have a “health care backpack,” which would make it possible to take insurance from job to job or when moving, starting a business or retiring.

The concept — often referred to as “portability” — is appealing. Why should a health plan be tied to where you work or live? The answer, of course, is “it’s complicated.” As Republicans debate ideas for repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, portability might play a central role in their plan. So how would that work?

News Headlines Article

Drug Price Debate Could Stall, Unless Consumers Get Engaged
The Health Care Blog

It’s still unclear whether Congress or the Trump administration will try to tackle the prescription drug price/cost issue this year. Amid ACA repeal and replace, and possible Medicaid and Medicare reform fights, it seems a stretch.

In recent weeks, Trump has also changed his tune on the subject. Soaring prescription prices were a populist rallying cry at his campaign stops pre-election and then pre-inauguration.

News Headlines Article

Instead Of Trashing A $600 EpiPen, Some Patients Get A Refill
Kaiser Health News

The concern over soaring prescription drug prices continues to dominate headlines, attracting scrutiny from Capitol Hill and President Donald Trump, who said during a January press conference that the industry was “getting away with murder.”

But some doctors — frustrated by what they see as unreasonable price tags and political stagnation — are coming up with do-it-yourself solutions. Their efforts to bring down costs for their patients highlight the arbitrary and often needlessly exorbitant prices of drugs in the U.S., they say.

News Headlines Article

Colorectal cancer rates rising sharply among Gen X and millennials
Washington Post

Rates of colon and rectal cancer are rising sharply among young and middle-aged Americans, at the same time that they continue to decline for adults 55 and older, according to a startling new study that is sparking questions about whether screening should start earlier.

The study, published Tuesday in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, found that between the mid-1980s and 2013, colon cancer rates increased about 1 to 2 percent per year for people in their 20s and 30s. Rates for middle-aged adults also rose, but at a slower pace.

News Headlines Article

Why Are More Young Americans Getting Colon Cancer?
National Public Radio

One of the great treats of following an Agatha Christie mystery (my favorite being Hercule Poirot) is that you know there will be an “Aha!” moment at the end. The fastidious, mustachioed detective will pull together all the disparate facts and present a compelling answer.

I’m frequently reminded that science doesn’t work that way. The latest case in point is an article published Tuesday in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute that sets out to explore a trend in colorectal cancer among younger Americans. 

News Headlines Article

Shasta Regional owner restores Anthem Blue Cross contract
Redding Record Searchlight

Prime Healthcare Services withdrew plans to terminate its contract with Anthem Blue Cross within a matter of hours Monday night.

Elizabeth Nikels, a spokeswoman for Prime Healthcare, did not elaborate on the matter, but confirmed the company, which operates 17 hospitals in California including Shasta Regional Medical Center in Redding, remains in-network with the insurance provider.

“We look forward to maintaining our longstanding relationship with Anthem Blue Cross and continuing our negotiations to reach mutually acceptable agreements in the best interest of our patients, physici

News Headlines Article

Alameda County Officials Say Repealing Affordable Care Act Would Be ‘Devastating’
East Bay Express

Millions of Americans found health care through the Affordable Care Act, including more than 150,000 in Alameda County — and many now fear that they will lose it once President Trump officially slashes “Obamacare.” To make matters worse, the Republicans have yet to settle on a replacement plan, which has patients with pre-existing conditions on tenterhooks — including Bonnie Smith, who works as a tutor in Oakland and has no health insurance through her job.

Before the ACA passed in 2010, Smith (the Express is using a pseudonym to protect her privacy) relied on a free clinic in San Leandro for her diabetes treatment. And accessing care at that clinic was no easy feat. “You had to get there at 3:30 in the morning in order to get a spot on the list when the doors opened up at eight,” she explained. “People would be out there in sleeping bags.”

News Headlines Article

Firm faces new role at Petaluma Valley Hospital
Petaluma Argus Courier

Petaluma Valley Hospital’s next operator, El Segundo-based Paladin Healthcare, is known for turning around struggling hospitals. Its latest task likely will be different, growing a hospital that has a solid financial footing, according its owners.

If approved by the community in a vote in June, Paladin will take over when the hospital’s owner, the Petaluma Health Care District, ends its long-running agreement with St. Joseph Health in September.

PHCD chose Paladin over Pipeline Health, which manages Sonoma West Medical Center in Sebastopol, and The KPC Group.

News Headlines Article

It’s official: Pomona Valley Hospital now a trauma center
San Gabriel Valley Tribune

After more than 1½ years of planning, construction and training, Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center will begin Wednesday accepting ambulances transporting trauma patients to its emergency department.

In mid-February, the Los Angeles County Emergency Medical Services Agency officially designated Pomona Valley as a trauma center effective Wednesday. It will begin receiving critically injured patients who have suffered gunshot wounds, been in car crashes, suffered industrial accidents or had serious accidents at home.

News Headlines Article

Hospital wing’s opening date delayed by rain
Ventura County Star

Rain that has hammered the area for nearly three months has pushed back the opening of a new wing at the Ventura County Medical Center until July 14, an official said Tuesday.

The weather slowed the pouring of concrete on outdoor walkways and an entry drive into the $305 million replacement wing in Ventura, creating a domino chain of delays, according to Joan Araujo, chief deputy director of the Ventura County Health Care Agency.

“We need the rain,” Araujo said, “but the reality is that it has cost some time.”

 

CHA News Article

CHA Releases 2014 Follow-Up Report on Allied Health Workforce

CHA is pleased to release the attached report, Critical Roles: California’s Allied Health Workforce (March 2014), a follow-up to an original 2011 publication. The report includes statewide information on select allied health occupation vacancy rates and age distribution, as well as other important information. The report is based on a 2013 statewide hospital survey that was designed to gather up-to-date data on the demand for health professionals in the short term and to identify hospital workforce concerns in the coming years. In addition to highlighting the survey findings, the updated document also includes key messages for policy makers and other stakeholders relevant to health workforce development in California. For a printed copy of the report, please contact info@calhospital.org.

Issue Paper

CHA Releases Allied Health Workforce Survey Results
Critical Roles: California's Allied Health Workforce

CHA is pleased to release Critical Roles: California’s Allied Health Workforce. This report highlights key findings from a recent CHA Allied Health Workforce Survey. The purpose of the survey was to gather up-to-date data regarding the effects of the economy on the demand for allied health professionals and to identify hospital workforce needs and concerns in the next one, three, and five years.

General information

AHA Report – ‘Workforce 2015: Strategy Trumps Shortage’

The American Hospital Association (AHA) recently released a report titled, “Workforce 2015: Strategy Trumps Shortage.” This report is the result of a year-long effort by the 2009 Long-Range Policy Committee to examine health workforce issues in the coming decade and to provide findings and recommendations for the field.

General information

Allied Health: The Hidden Health Care Workforce

Allied Health: The Hidden Health Care Workforce is the result of work completed by the CHA Healthcare Workforce Coalition. The coalition was established by CHA, and is sponsored in part by The California Endowment, in response to the need for a coordinated, statewide effort to develop and implement long-term strategies that will address allied health workforce shortages in the state. Members of this broad coalition include CHA member hospitals and health systems, as well as various stakeholders, including representatives from the University of California (UC), California State University, California Community Colleges, California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, UC San Francisco Center for the Health Professions, Connecting the Dots Initiative, Campaign for College Opportunity, Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, and California Primary Care Association, among others.

Commands