CEO Message

On Behavioral Health, ‘…No State More Capable…’

About a year ago, the Behavioral Health Action Coalition held a historic forum focused on mental health and substance use disorders in California, featuring then-Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom. This week, in a much-deserved recognition, the coalition named Gov. Newsom a Behavioral Health Champion.

CHA co-founded Behavioral Health Action in 2018 with the National Alliance for Mental Illness, California, to lead a partnership of more than 50 organizations from health care, education, labor, law enforcement, local government, and business — all focused on eliminating stigma and engaging lawmakers to develop solutions to the behavioral health challenges faced by millions of Californians (check out all of our efforts here and here).

The coalition’s one-on-one conversation with Newsom shortly before his election to the governor’s office was a catalyst for something new in California: As lieutenant governor, he was the highest-ranking statewide official to meet with such a wide array of behavioral health professionals.

That forum was the beginning not just of a high-level public discussion about the needs of people who face behavioral health challenges — but also the beginning of meaningful statewide change. As he said then about the need for California to set an example for the nation, [there is] no state more capable than this state to truly lead in this space.”

Once in office, Gov. Newsom quickly announced a first-ever special advisor on mental health care, Tom Insel, MD, who continues to advance the conversation on improving lives and innovating behavioral health care. And, the governor has — most importantly  — championed mental health funding on a statewide level.

This year’s state budget recognizes the need for mental health workforce development with $150 million, including $20 million for hospitals to use in emergency departments. It also includes $100 million for whole person care pilot programs, and $70 million for Medi-Cal integration programs.

We were grateful a year ago when he sat down to talk with us and pledged his commitment, and we are grateful now for the important steps he has already taken to help make California a global model for behavioral health.

To borrow from Gov. Newsom: “This is an issue that demands to be treated on par with physical health… and with a sense of urgency.”

Half of us will care for someone living with a mental health issue at some point in our lives. If we are to make good on our commitment to improve lives and relieve suffering, we need to continue to support leaders like Gov. Newsom who champion a better system to care for those with behavioral health needs.

— Carmela

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Emergency Preparedness

CHA News Article

State Offers Hospitals Financing Options for Additional Backup Generators
For CFOs

The California Health Facilities Financing Authority (CHFFA) reminds public and nonprofit hospitals that it offers financing options, including bonds or loans, if they need to invest in additional backup generators to ensure electricity and continuity of operations during power outages. The flyer linked above includes details about CHFFA’s bond financing program, tax-exempt equipment financing program, and the HELP II loan program, as well as contact information for additional details.

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CHA News Article

CMS Issues First of Two CY 2020 OPPS Final Rules
For CEOs, CFOs, government relations staff, finance & reimbursement staff

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the first of two separate regulations finalizing provisions for the calendar year (CY) 2020 outpatient prospective payment system. In the first final rule, released today, CMS raises hospital outpatient payments by 2.6% for CY 2020 and estimates this will increase overall outpatient payments by $6.3 billion compared to CY 2019.

CHA News Article

CMS Issues CY 2020 Home Health PPS Final Rule
For home health staff, finance & reimbursement staff

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the final rule for the prospective payment system (PPS) for home health agencies (HHAs) for calendar year (CY) 2020. The provisions in the rule will be effective Jan. 1, 2020. 

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CHA News Article

FDA Issues Statement on Sterilization Facility Closures and Potential Medical Device Shortages
For CNOs, quality & patient safety staff, infection preventionists

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a statement alerting the public to potential medical device shortages due to the recent closures of certain facilities that sterilize devices using ethylene oxide.

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Quality & Patient Safety

CHA News Article

CDPH Reminds Residents, Public Health Professionals About Air Quality Issues During Wildfires
For COOs, quality & patient safety staff

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) offers various resources to help mitigate the effects of poor air quality during wildfires, including a guide for public health professionals, a web page where residents can check their local air quality, and FAQs.

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Workforce Development

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CHA News Article

Register Today for 2020 California Hospital Volunteer Leadership Conference
For CEOs, volunteers

The 2020 California Hospital Volunteer Leadership Conference will be held Feb. 17-19 at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach.

Last year, the conference focused on innovative strategies to address the transformations within health care. The 2020 conference theme — Engineering Change. Inspiring Leadership. — will focus on how to best plan and motivate volunteer leaders to adapt to these changes. 

The conference, which is presented by the California Association for Hospitals & Health Systems (CAHHS) Volunteer Services, is designed for hospital volunteer leaders, paid staff who manage volunteer programs, community partners, and hospital inter-professional peers looking to expand their services through the use of volunteer programs. 

The conference will provide an excellent forum to meet and network with other leaders who believe volunteering is a core strategic function of every hospital organization.

Registration for attendees, sponsors, and advertisers is available exclusively online on the conference web page.

Discounted sleeping rooms are available at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach until Jan. 24, 2020. To book a room at the conference hotel, call (800) 233-1234 and reference CAHHS or California Hospital Volunteer, or visit

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HHS News Roundup

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CHA Education Events

For more information about CHA education programs, visit