Hospital Topics

Overview

CDPH Licensing & Enforcement

The California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) Licensing and Certification Division (L&C) is responsible for the licensure, regulation, inspection, and certification of health care facilities and certain health care professionals in California. The division is organized into 14 district offices and Los Angeles County, which operates under a contract with the division. L&C staff conduct periodic inspections and investigation of complaints to ensure health care facilities comply with state and federal laws and regulations, conducting roughly 27,000 complaint investigations annually.

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) — which provides federal funding to ensure that facilities accepting Medicare and Medi-Cal payments comply with federal laws and regulatory requirements — contracts with L&C to perform federal surveys. In addition to facility oversight, L&C oversees the certification of nurse assistants, home health aides, hemodialysis technicians, and the licensing of nursing home administrators.

CHA News Article

CDPH Releases California Health Advisory Update on Ebola
For Infection Preventionists, Disaster Readiness Staff, Licensing & Certification Staff, Quality & Patient Safety Staff

On July 18, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released a California Health Advisory Update on Ebola — one day after the World Health Organization declared the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo to be a public health emergency of international concern.

CHA News Article

State Deactivates Medical and Health Coordination Center
For CNOs, Infection Preventionists

On July 1, the California Department of Public Health and the Emergency Medical Services Authority deactivated the Medical and Health Coordination Center, which was activated in response to the April 2019 measles outbreak. Local health jurisdictions are no longer required to submit weekly situation reports and cost tracking related to the outbreak. Instead, they should follow the defined response protocols in the Public Health and Medical Emergency Operations Manual.

CHA News Article

CDPH Announces Changes to Application Submission Process
For Licensing and Certification Staff

Beginning July 1, the California Department of Public Health will not accept payment for health facility license application fees until its Licensing & Certification Centralized Applications Branch validates that all required forms and supporting documentation have been received. For more information, see All Facilities Letter 19-20.

CHA News Article

CHA Submits Pre-Regulatory Title 22 Comments on Regulations for Acute Care Hospitals
For COOs, Licensing Staff, Rehabilitation Staff

CHA recently submitted comments to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), responding to its requests for input on changes to Title 22 regulations. In the letter, CHA thanks CDPH for undertaking the process of revising the regulations, noting that the majority are outdated and no longer relevant to current hospital care delivery. 

CHA News Article

CDPH Proposes Increase in Hospital Licensing Fees

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) proposes to increase hospital licensing fees by 20 percent for state fiscal year 2019-20, raising fees from $550 to $661 per bed.

Overview

Clinical Care

Clinical care touches every aspect of hospital operations. Policies and procedures surrounding clinical care are of the utmost importance in meeting regulatory, legal and licensing requirements. CHA has numerous area-specific groups — including specialty centers and committees — that address the many aspects of clinical care. Some areas of clinical care are subject to rapid changes in public policy and regulations, creating additional challenges for hospitals. In addition to providing representation and advocacy to address these challenges, CHA focuses on the unique needs of certain facilities, and the services and programs they offer their communities.

CHA News Article

Health Alert Issued on Severe Pulmonary Disease Associated With Cannabis Vaping

The California Health Alert Network (CAHAN) reports that, since June, seven cases of severe acute pulmonary disease requiring hospitalization and respiratory support among adults who have been vaping cannabis or cannabidiol oils have been reported to the Kings County Health Officer. Clinicians who encounter similar cases should report them to their local health department.

CHA News Article

Webinars Begin Next Week on New Opioid Safety Designation for Hospitals
For CMOs, CNOs, Quality & Patient Safety Staff

Cal Hospital Compare, a nonprofit performance reporting initiative, will launch an opioid safety designation program for hospitals later this month, intended to accelerate improvement and recognize California hospitals’ efforts to combat the opioid epidemic. A series of five no-cost webinars – the first to be held May 9 at 11 a.m. (PT) – will explain a self-assessment tool integral to the new designation, and will feature peer-to-peer learning on a variety of safe opioid practices.

CHA News Article

CDPH Releases Questions for Meeting on Hospital Infection Control, Physical Plant Regulations

In preparation for an upcoming meeting to solicit stakeholder feedback on possible changes to Title 22  infection control and physical plant regulations for general acute care hospitals, the California Department of Public Health has released a series of questions. More details are available in All Facilities Letter 18-56.1.

CHA News Article

CDC Updates Alert on Life-Threatening Coagulopathy Associated with Synthetic Cannabinoids

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated its health alertaddressing a multistate outbreak of coagulopathy — a bleeding disorder that impacts the way blood clots — that has been linked to synthetic cannabinoid use.

CHA News Article

CDPH Changes Name, Email Address of Centralized Applications Unit

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has reorganized its Center for Health Care Quality, Licensing & Certification Unit and Centralized Applications Unit. Now combined and renamed as the Centralized Applications Branch, the new structure consists of four distinct sections: Non-Long-Term Care, Long-Term Care, Report of Change, and Licensing-Certification and Policy. In the attached All Facilities Letter 18-44, CDPH notes that the change is intended to “provide additional resources and realign […] sections to better meet provider needs.” The new email address is CAB@cdph.ca.gov.

Overview

Construction / Renovation

In the area of construction and renovation, CHA assists hospitals by reviewing and commenting on proposed regulations, attending all Hospital Building Safety Board (HBSB) meetings, nominating hospital representatives to the HBSB Board and serving as liaison between hospitals and the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development’s (OSHPD) Facility Development Division when issues need to be resolved.

CHA News Article

Hospitals Must Submit Attestations of 2030 Seismic Safety Deadline to OSHPD by Dec. 31
For CEOs, Chief Legal Counsel, Facilities Staff

On July 17, the California Building Standards Commission certified emergency building standards proposed by the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) to implement CHA’s sponsored bill from last year, Assembly Bill (AB) 2190 (Chapter 673, Statutes of 2018).

CHA News Article

9/11 First Responder Will Speak at CHA Disaster Preparedness Conference
For CEOs, Public Relations Staff, Disaster Readiness Staff, Government Relations Staff, Facilities Staff

For the first time, CHA’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference will take place on Sept. 11. To honor those who gave everything they had — and those who continue to put their lives at risk — CHA has invited a Ground Zero 9/11 first responder, Glen Klein, to help us remember how that day has shaped our world.

CHA News Article

2019 California Building Standards Codes Available
For Facilities Management Staff

The California Building Standards Commission has announced the availability of the 2019 California Building Standards Code, which takes effect Jan. 1, 2020. The 2016 Building Standards Code remains in effect until Dec. 31, 2019.

CHA News Article

CDPH Changes Approval Process for Sterile Compounding Physical Plant Construction Projects
For CEOs, COOs, Pharmacists-in-Charge, Lead Engineers/Construction

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) earlier this week released All Facilities Letter 19-19, which updates its application process for new or remodeled pharmacy clean rooms and mobile sterile compounding units (MSCUs). Notably, CDPH will no longer accept incomplete applications for pharmacy clean rooms or MSCUs. CDPH states the update is in response to Assembly Bill 2978 (Chapter 992, Statutes of 2018), which requires CDPH to review or deny applications within 100 days of receipt.

CHA News Article

Building Standards Commission Accepting Comments on Proposed Changes to Building Codes
Attestation due Dec. 31 for hospitals that will not meet 2030 seismic standards

The California Building Standards Commission is now accepting comments on proposed rules that would align current building codes with a law enacted last year, Assembly Bill (AB) 2190 (Chapter 673, Statutes of 2018).

Overview

Coverage

Providing access to health coverage is essential to improving population health in California. A strategic and collaborative approach between hospitals, Covered California, the California Department of Health Care Services, counties and local communities is critical to the continued expansion of health coverage through the Covered California marketplace and the Medi-Cal program.

Over 5 million Californians have insurance as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) — roughly a quarter of all Americans covered under the law. In California, 91 percent of individuals are now insured. The uninsured rate in California fell from 17 percent in 2013 to a historic low of 7.3 percent by the end of 2016. Since 2014, more than 3 million people have purchased health coverage through Covered California, and nearly 4 million have enrolled in the state’s Medi-Cal program — for a total of more than 13.5 million Californians now enrolled in Medi-Cal. Of Covered California’s 1.3 million enrolled consumers, nearly 90 percent receive some level of financial help.

Despite these coverage gains, about 3 million Californians will remain uninsured in 2017. The majority of those projected to remain uninsured in California are not eligible for Medi-Cal or Covered California due to their immigration status. Just under 25 percent of the remaining uninsured are eligible for either Medi-Cal or subsidized coverage through Covered California, while 18 percent are eligible through Covered California but would not receive subsidies.

CHA News Article

AHA Survey on Plan Denials, Network Adequacy Deadline Extended to Sept. 15
For CEOs, CFOs, Reimbursement Staff

The deadline to respond to the American Hospital Association survey requesting information on private plan utilization management practices and network adequacy has been extended to Sept. 15. California hospitals’ response rate has been low to date, and participation in this survey is important to our collaborative advocacy efforts. CHA will receive the California data. 

CHA News Article

CHA Files Declaration Supporting State Legal Action to Oppose New Public Charge Rule

CHA President & CEO Carmela Coyle this week filed a declaration supporting a federal court lawsuit brought by the state of California and others challenging the federal government’s recent expansion of the public charge rule — regulatory changes that will dramatically increase the number of immigrants denied admission to the U.S. The declaration explains that the changes will impair access to care, affect health outcomes for entire families, and lead to a significant loss of health insurance coverage throughout the state.

CHA News Article

DHCS Issues August Stakeholder Update
For CEOs, CFOs, and Government Relations Staff

The Department of Health Care Services has published its bimonthly update of department events and actions.

CHA News Article For Members

Final Rule Expands List of Programs to Be Considered Under ‘Public Charge’ Test

On Aug. 12, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) finalized a rule to change the policy under which the federal government can deny immigrants U.S. entry or adjustment to their legal permanent resident status (e.g., green card) if they are determined likely to become public charges (see CHA’s response). The final rule expands the list of programs that may be considered for determining public charge status, to include not only cash assistance and long-term care but also certain health care, nutrition, and housing programs.

CHA News Article

TriWest to Administer California’s VA Community Care Network

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has awarded TriWest Healthcare Alliance (TriWest) a contract to administer the VA’s Community Care Network (CCN) in California. TriWest will establish and maintain a network of community care providers in the state, as outlined in the Veterans Community Care Program final rule.

Overview

Emergency Preparedness
Is your hospital prepared?

Visit CHA’s Emergency Preparedness website at calhospitalprepare.org

About

Through the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Office of Preparedness and Emergency Operations, Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) grant, CHA has created a web site specifically devoted to Emergency Preparedness at www.calhospitalprepare.org.

   
CHA News Article

More Than 700 Gather in Pasadena for Disaster Preparedness Conference

Recognizing the importance of learning from recent disasters and from one another, more than 700 hospital and disaster response officials from across California gathered in Pasadena this week at CHA’s annual Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference.

CHA News Article

Disaster Planning Conference to Feature Tour of Cal Tech Seismo Lab
For CEOs, CNOs, Case Managers, and Licensing & Certification, Quality & Patient Safety, Facilities, and Disaster Preparedness Staff

This year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference – to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena – will feature a tour of Caltech’s Seismological Lab. Internationally recognized for excellence in geophysical research and academics, the lab serves as a focal point for earthquake information in Southern California and the world.

CHA News Article

Register by Aug. 19 for Best Rate at Disaster Planning Conference
For CEOs, CNOs, Case Managers, and Licensing & Certification, Quality & Patient Safety, Facilities, and Disaster Preparedness Staff

The deadline to receive discount registration and hotel rates at this year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference – to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena – is Aug. 19. After that, registration will increase by $100, and the conference rate for hotel rooms expires.

CHA News Article

Upcoming Disaster Conference to Feature Executive Panel
For CEOs, Public Relations Staff, Disaster Readiness Staff, Government Relations Staff, Facilities Staff

At this year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference, to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena, attendees will have a unique opportunity to hear directly from hospital executives about their role during and after a crisis.

CHA News Article

Livestreaming Expands Hospitals’ Opportunity to Benefit From Disaster Planning Conference

For the first time, CHA members will be able to livestream the Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference — taking place Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena — hearing and viewing the conference from the convenience of their own office or conference room. The livestream option allows multiple people to experience the conference with a single registration fee and no lodging or transportation expenses.

Overview

Environmental Health & Safety

CHA assists hospital environmental health and safety (EH&S) officers and other hospital personnel regarding compliance with the many — and frequently overlapping — state and federal EH&S requirements, including those related to  managing medical, hazardous and low-level radioactive waste. CHA also monitors EH&S legislation and regulation on behalf of hospitals and acts as their liaison with government agencies.  

CHA News Article

Disaster Planning Conference to Feature Tour of Cal Tech Seismo Lab
For CEOs, CNOs, Case Managers, and Licensing & Certification, Quality & Patient Safety, Facilities, and Disaster Preparedness Staff

This year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference – to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena – will feature a tour of Caltech’s Seismological Lab. Internationally recognized for excellence in geophysical research and academics, the lab serves as a focal point for earthquake information in Southern California and the world.

CHA News Article

Register by Aug. 19 for Best Rate at Disaster Planning Conference
For CEOs, CNOs, Case Managers, and Licensing & Certification, Quality & Patient Safety, Facilities, and Disaster Preparedness Staff

The deadline to receive discount registration and hotel rates at this year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference – to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena – is Aug. 19. After that, registration will increase by $100, and the conference rate for hotel rooms expires.

CHA News Article

Upcoming Disaster Conference to Feature Executive Panel
For CEOs, Public Relations Staff, Disaster Readiness Staff, Government Relations Staff, Facilities Staff

At this year’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals Conference, to be held Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena, attendees will have a unique opportunity to hear directly from hospital executives about their role during and after a crisis.

CHA News Article

Livestreaming Expands Hospitals’ Opportunity to Benefit From Disaster Planning Conference

For the first time, CHA members will be able to livestream the Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference — taking place Sept. 10-11 in Pasadena — hearing and viewing the conference from the convenience of their own office or conference room. The livestream option allows multiple people to experience the conference with a single registration fee and no lodging or transportation expenses.

CHA News Article

9/11 First Responder Will Speak at CHA Disaster Preparedness Conference
For CEOs, Public Relations Staff, Disaster Readiness Staff, Government Relations Staff, Facilities Staff

For the first time, CHA’s Disaster Planning for California Hospitals conference will take place on Sept. 11. To honor those who gave everything they had — and those who continue to put their lives at risk — CHA has invited a Ground Zero 9/11 first responder, Glen Klein, to help us remember how that day has shaped our world.

Overview

Finance & Reimbursement

Hospital finance is complicated, and California hospitals operate in a challenging environment. Hospital executives are faced with the task of developing financial strategies that contain costs yet allow for the provision of health care to the state’s large uninsured population. CHA is committed to providing hospital financial executives with the resources needed to address these challenges, and believes that hospitals should be reimbursed adequately to cover the cost of care.

Through state and federal advocacy efforts, CHA dedicates many resources to fair government reimbursement and strives to improve hospitals’ financial outlook through legislative and regulatory channels. CHA’s statewide committees and workgroups help provide direction on how to best represent the diverse issues that affect hospitals’ financial performance. In addition, CHA DataSuite is an information-based toolset, available only to CHA members, that helps hospitals analyze government reimbursement changes, and the potential impact of regulatory and legislative actions on hospitals.  

CHA News Article

CMS Postpones Billing Edit Requiring Exact Matching for OPPS Providers With Multiple Service Locations Until April 2020
For CFOs, Reimbursement Staff

In response to continued pressure from CHA and other stakeholders, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has further postponed activating billing edits requiring exact matching for the address on claims data for outpatient prospective payment system providers with multiple service locations. The edits are now scheduled to be fully implemented in April 2020, allowing for additional agency testing and provider updates.  

CHA News Article

CMS Establishes Claims Processing Requirements for Appropriate Use Criteria Program
For CFOs, CMOs

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently instructed Medicare Administrative Contractors to accept modifier codes for appropriate use criteria (AUC) on Medicare claims for advanced diagnostic imaging services beginning Jan. 1, 2020.

Overview

Health Information Management & Technology

CHA supports the capture and availability of secure patient-care data through the use of health information technology (HIT) across the continuum of care. CHA believes HIT serves as a tool to enhance patient safety, promote information sharing for preventative health services and reduce health care costs.

Hospitals face a number of challenges with HIT such as security and interoperability. The development of industry standards is crucial to successful interoperability and the safe and effective exchange of patient data. Certification of vendor systems, for example, involves compliance with industry-accepted data and technical standards.

CHA News Article

Comment Deadline Extended for Interoperability Proposed Rules
For CFOs, CIOs, Government Relations Staff

In response to requests from CHA and other stakeholders, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has extended the comment period for its two proposed rules on interoperability and information blocking to June 3.

CHA News Article

Proposed Rules Issued on Interoperability and Information Blocking

The Department of Health and Human Services has issued two proposed rules – one from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the other from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) –  intended to improve the interoperability of health information.

CHA News Article

CHA Comments on Draft Strategy to Reduce Health IT and Electronic Health Record Burden

Yesterday, CHA submitted comments on the Office of the National Coordinator’s (ONC) draft strategy to reduce regulatory and administrative burden related to health information technology and electronic health record (EHR) use.

CHA News Article

Updated Record and Data Retention Schedule Now Available
Available in print and electronic formats

CHA is pleased to announce the new release of its Record and Data Retention Schedule, the first update of this publication in seven years. The guidebook provides an overview of practical considerations in record retention policies and helps hospitals determine which records need to be kept and for how long.

The guide can help reduce storage costs and avoid legal pitfalls by making clear when it is safe to dispose of certain records.

Overview

Homeless Patients

California has an estimated 134,000 homeless individuals — more than any other state in the nation. Hospitals are on the front lines of this crisis, employing comprehensive strategies to address  homeless patients’ complex needs and safely discharge them. CHA has created a number of videos to showcase hospitals engaged in this work.

In addition, CHA has developed in-depth resources to help member hospitals comply with a law passed in 2018 — SB 1152 — that imposed new requirements on how hospitals manage and discharge homeless patients who present in the emergency department. See link at the right to download CHA’s guidebook.

CHA News Article

Updated Discharge Planning for Homeless Patients Guidebook Now Available
For CNOs, Case Managers

CHA has updated the Discharge Planning for Homeless Patients guidebook and released a free PDF download for CHA members.

General Information

Mobile Program Outreach Extends to Homeless Shelter

California’s homeless population faces an especially difficult challenge when it comes to access to health care. Often, homeless families lack up-to-date medical records, including immunizations necessary for children to enroll in school. There is particular risk for diseases like tuberculosis. Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles recently dispatched its two mobile units, part of a program called COACH for Kids, to a shelter for homeless families in North Hollywood. It’s part of a regular community benefit outreach by the hospital as it extends its reach to neighborhoods and the underserved.

Overview

Hospital Fee Program

The hospital fee program is crucial to the preservation of California’s entire safety net, which is why California’s safety-net hospitals initiated provider fee legislation and why all California hospitals support it. The program uses fees assessed by the state on hospitals to draw down federal matching funds, which are then issued as supplemental payments to hospitals. It is an integral element to improving access to health care for some of California’s most vulnerable residents.

The hospital fee program and all of its statutory provisions and protections were made permanent through the passage of CHA’s ballot initiative, the Medi-Cal Funding and Accountability Act (Proposition 52), in the November 2016 General Election. By removing the sunset date of Jan. 1, 2018, in the existing statute (SB 239, 2013), the Act becomes the framework for all future hospital fee programs. Among other statutory provisions, Proposition 52 makes permanent the limit on the amount the state can take out of the program for the General Fund; the construct of the fee program (both the fee side and the payment mechanisms); and the source of data and information used to develop the program. The next program period covers Jan. 1, 2017, through June 30, 2019.

CHA News Article

CMS Approves Hospital Fee Program Managed Care Rates for State Fiscal Year 2015-16

This week, the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) shared four approval letters, dated March 18, from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Hospitals should share the relevant letters, linked here, with their accounting firms:

CHA News Article

DHCS Releases Final Guidance on Network Provider Status
CHA to host webinar on impact for Hospital Fee Program

Last week, the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) issued its final All Plan Letter (APL) 19-001, specifying contractual requirements that must exist between Medi-Cal managed care plans (MCPs) and hospitals for a hospital to be considered a network provider.

CHA News Article

CMS Approves Hospital Fee Program Managed Care Rates
Rate package covers expansion population for Jan. 1 – June 30, 2015

Yesterday, the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) shared four approval letters. dated Dec. 12, from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Hospitals should share the relevant letters, linked here, with their accounting firms:

Overview

Human Resources

California hospitals and health systems employ more than half a million people, from entry-level positions to senior executives. Many health care human resources (HR) departments are responsible for a wide range of issues, such as recruitment, staffing, compensation, benefits, labor/employee relations and employee health. Navigating the complex regulatory environment, while monitoring how it applies to HR in the health care setting, can be a challenging and dynamic task.

Representing hospitals and health systems in California, CHA provides leadership in HR policy at state and federal levels. In addition, CHA advocates on behalf of hospitals and health systems before the federal and state legislatures, federal and state administrative agencies and the public. CHA also provides educational opportunities, such as the annual Labor & Employment Law seminar, to help hospital leaders sharpen their skills and knowledge in health care HR. CHA members also participate on an HR executive e-mail list and receive periodic informational memoranda. 

CHA News Article

Federal ‘Conscience’ Rule Delayed

Yesterday, the federal Department of Health and Human Services announced it will delay by four months its expansion of protections for health workers. Referred to as the “conscience rule,” the regulation would protect health care workers who refuse to participate in services — such as abortion, sterilization, and assisted suicide — that run counter to their religious beliefs or moral convictions.

CHA News Article

CHA Secures Amendments to Nurse Staffing Ratio Bill, Continues Advocacy to Oppose
For CEOs, CNOs, Government Relations Staff

One of CHA’s highest legislative priorities this year has been Senate Bill (SB) 227 (Leyva, D-Chino), which would create duplicative and mandatory fines for hospitals if they do not meet required nurse staffing ratios. With help from member hospitals, our advocacy generated key amendments last week, including:

  • An exemption for hospitals that — in response to an unforeseeable and uncontrollable fluctuation — promptly make an effort to maintain staffing requirements
  • A 50% reduction in the fines (now $15,000 for the first violation and $30,000 subsequently)
  • A reduction in the length of time required to revert to a first violation (lowered from six years to three)
CHA News Article

Contact Legislators and Urge Opposition to Nurse Staffing Ratio Bill
For CEOs, Government Relations Executives

CHA has extended the deadline for its Advocacy Alert asking members to urge their assemblymembers to oppose Senate Bill (SB) 227, which would create an unreasonable, mandatory penalty system for hospitals that do not meet nurse staffing ratios. The deadline for letters is now 5 p.m. on June 11. 

CHA News Article

CHA Asks Hospitals to Urge Legislators to Oppose Nurse Staffing Ratio Penalties

Earlier this week, CHA sent an Advocacy Alert to hospital leaders about Senate Bill 227 (Leyva, D-Chino), a bill that would create significant penalties for hospitals that do not meet nurse staffing ratios. CHA urges hospital leaders to contact their representatives about this harmful bill, which would increase costs without providing any benefit to patients.

CHA News Article

CHA Supports Resident Physician Shortage Act of 2019
Urges California delegation to cosponsor

CHA sent a letter to the California congressional delegation this week, urging support of the Resident Physician Shortage Act of 2019 (H.R. 1763), which takes steps to reduce nationwide physician shortages by increasing the number of Medicare-supported residency positions.

Overview

Legal

CHA’s legal department advocates vigorously before the courts on behalf of California hospitals, both as a party in litigation and as amicus curiae in important appellate cases. In addition, the CHA legal department prepares legal memoranda and manuals to help hospitals understand and comply with state and federal laws. The CHA legal department also supports CHA staff in their advocacy efforts before the state legislature and regulatory agencies.

CHA News Article

Proposed Regulations Address Confidentiality of Patients With Substance Use Disorder
For Privacy Officers, Legal Counsel

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released two proposed rules last week about the confidentiality of substance use disorder (SUD) patient information. The first proposed rule includes several changes to the law governing medical records created by federally assisted substance use disorder (FASUD) programs, also known as the Part 2 regulations.

CHA News Article

2019 California Hospital Compliance Manual Now Available

CHA has released the 10th edition of the Hospital Compliance Manual, written specifically to help California’s hospital compliance officers, chief financial officers, legal counsel, and risk managers stay abreast of pertinent state and federal laws. The manual focuses on high-risk compliance issues and addresses the key components of an effective compliance plan.

CHA News Article

CHA Comments on Modifying HIPAA Provisions to Improve Coordinated Care

CHA has submitted comments to the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in response to a request for information about modifying Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy and security rules.

CHA News Article

Homeless Patient Discharge Planning Guidebook Now Available for Free Download
Print copies also available

CHA’s latest guidebook, Discharge Planning for Homeless Patients, explains California’s new homeless patient discharge planning law and offers insights to help hospitals prepare to return homeless patients to the community. 

CHA News Article

Updated Record and Data Retention Schedule Now Available
Available in print and electronic formats

CHA is pleased to announce the new release of its Record and Data Retention Schedule, the first update of this publication in seven years. The guidebook provides an overview of practical considerations in record retention policies and helps hospitals determine which records need to be kept and for how long.

The guide can help reduce storage costs and avoid legal pitfalls by making clear when it is safe to dispose of certain records.

Overview

Patient Rights

California and federal laws give hospital patients many rights. Hospitals must notify patients of these rights by giving patients a handout and/or by putting posters up in the hospital.

CHA has developed a sample handout that hospitals may use to notify patients of their rights under state hospital licensing regulations, the Medicare Conditions of Participation, and The Joint Commission. In addition, CHA publishes a corresponding poster.

CHA News Article

Homeless Patient Discharge Planning Guidebook Now Available for Free Download
Print copies also available

CHA’s latest guidebook, Discharge Planning for Homeless Patients, explains California’s new homeless patient discharge planning law and offers insights to help hospitals prepare to return homeless patients to the community. 

Overview

Quality & Patient Safety

CHA is committed to helping hospitals improve quality, reduce medical errors and adverse events, and maximize patient safety. To further those efforts, CHA and the Regional Associations established the Hospital Quality Institute (HQI) in 2013 to realize statewide impact of improving patient safety and quality care for all Californians, to accelerate the rate of improvement and to advance California as a national leader in quality performance. HQI’s broad scope of work includes reducing patient harm, reducing health care-associated infections, reducing hospital readmissions, improving patient experience and improving maternal/child outcomes. Hospitals and health systems that belong to HQI — a voluntary organization — use it as an excellent source of performance data and analytics to focus improvement opportunities and take best practices to scale. In addition, CHPSO, the nation’s largest and longest operating patient safety organization, is a division of HQI.

CHA also regularly tracks and reports on important developments in the public reporting of hospital quality data, including OSHPD and Hospital Compare website data, and keeps members informed of regulations related to pay for quality reporting and performance.

CHA News Article

Poster Submission Deadline Is Friday for HQI Annual Conference
For CNOs, Quality & Patient Safety Staff

The deadline for submitting a poster for presentation at the 2019 Hospital Quality Institute Annual Conference is this Friday, Aug. 16. Selected posters will provide one presenter with a 20% discount on conference tuition.

CHA News Article

HQI to Host July 25 Webinar on Strategies for Hospital-Based Maternal Mental Health
For Quality & Patient Safety Staff

On July 25 from 10-11 a.m. (PT), the Hospital Quality Institute will host a free webinar to address upcoming maternal mental health education requirements for hospitals. Under Assembly Bill 3032 (Chapter 773, Statutes of 2018) — the Maternal Mental Health Conditions Education, Early Diagnosis, and Treatment Act — hospitals must educate employees who are regularly assigned to perinatal units about maternal mental health conditions.

Overview

Workforce

California hospitals are concerned about the need for an adequate supply of highly skilled health professionals to meet the demands for health care services now and in the future. Numerous studies have validated the need to address critical health professional shortages in nursing and the allied health occupations. However, efforts to implement recommended strategies have been hindered by a lack of a coordinated statewide effort involving health employers and other necessary partners.

In response to the need for focus on this issue and the need for statewide solutions, CHA established the CHA Workforce Committee in 2007. Members of the committee include a broad cross-section of California’s hospitals, both urban and rural, and also represent the state’s various geographic regions. The committee has been focused primarily on allied health professional shortages, but in 2013 broadened its mission to include supporting various statewide nursing and physician shortage initiatives. The committee recognizes that current challenges in the area of health workforce will be exacerbated by an aging population and implementation of the Affordable Care Act, and is dedicated to working as a group and with other stakeholders to develop and implement solutions that will address the numerous barriers that constrict the supply of health care professionals in California.

CHA News Article

Applications for $38 Million in Graduate Medical Education Funding Available This Month

Applications for $38 million in grants to expand graduate medical education (GME) in California primary care and emergency medicine residency programs will be available beginning Sept. 23. The funding – which will give priority to programs in medically underserved areas and that serve medically underserved populations – is being awarded through Physicians for a Healthy California’s GME program, CalMedForce.

CHA News Article

New Report Examines Increasing Primary Care Capacity
For CNOs

Based on findings from a survey and focus groups of educators, nurses, and employers, a newly released report offers evidence-based recommendations to help educational institutions prepare registered nurses for the future of primary care.

CHA News Article

Governor Signs Bill Expanding Career Pathway for Medical Laboratory Technicians

Earlier this week, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 334 (Chapter 144, Statutes of 2019), which requires the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to establish a pathway program that allows licensed medical laboratory technicians (MLTs) to apply their MLT work experience and training toward the completion of a clinical lab scientist (CLS) training program. 

CHA News Article

Next Round of Proposition 56 Graduate Medical Education Funding Available Soon
For CEOs, Government Relations Staff, and Designated Institutional Officers

This week, Physicians for a Healthy California announced it will award approximately $40 million in the second cycle of its CalMedForce Program, which provides funding for graduate medical education (GME) programs in California. Applications will be released Sept. 23 and are due Oct. 28.

CHA News Article

House Ways & Means Committee Passes CHA-Supported Opioid Workforce Act of 2019
For Government Relations Staff, Workforce Specialists, Behavioral Health Staff

On June 26, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Committee passed a measure that would increase graduate medical education slots for academic medical centers with existing pain and addiction training programs. H.R. 3414 — the Opioid Workforce Act of 2019 ­— is supported by CHA as it would benefit numerous academic medical centers throughout the state. It will now move to the full House for consideration.

Commands