News to Know – Week of May 23

The deadline is approaching to apply for the Circle of Life Awards, which recognize innovative palliative or end-of-life care providers that measure and evaluate the impact of their work on patients, family and/or the community. Part 1 applications for the 2023 awards will be accepted through May 31 and Part 2 applications are due Aug. 15. The new two-part process is designed to reduce the time needed to apply. Up to three Circle of Life Awards will be presented during the American Hospital Association (AHA) Leadership Summit in July 2023. Caring Circle of Lakeland, a wholly owned subsidiary of Spectrum Health Lakeland, is one of the most recent winners of the award. Questions about the award and the application process may be directed to the AHA.

Webinar Reviews Infection Control Worksheet Compliance

Antibiotics have transformed the practice of medicine, making once lethal infections readily treatable and other medical advances possible. Like all medications, antibiotics can have serious unintended consequences, such as causing a patient to have an adverse drug reaction or a patient misusing the antibiotic. Improving the use of antibiotics is an important patient safety and public health issue. The MHA Health Foundation webinar The CMS Hospital Infection Control and Antibiotic Stewardship Program Compliance Requirements will examine:

  • How to accurately complete Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) infection control worksheets.
  • Updated procedures for the hand hygiene tracer.
  • Details surrounding the use of clean needles and syringes.
  • Vaccine storage and handling, as well as Centers for Disease Control and Prevention procedures for cleaning and disinfecting reusable medical devices.

The webinar is scheduled from 10 a.m. to noon ET June 7, and MHA members can register for a $200 connection fee per facility. Members with questions should contact Erica Leyko at the MHA.

Trustees Play Significant Role in Healthcare Recovery


EIGFCOVID-19 has reshaped the healthcare environment. Emerging trends will have implications for years to come and the way hospitals and boards lead through recovery — be it financial, clinical or emotional — will determine the organization’s future.

The MHA Excellence in Governance Fellowship is the best choice to help prepare health organization board members to excel in performing their vital responsibilities as hospitals and health systems navigate an environment where COVID-19 is endemic. Launched 20 years ago, the fellowship is a rigorous and comprehensive program delivering tools and knowledge in four strategic areas: principles of effective governance, improving quality and patient safety, building collaborative medical staff partnerships, and building strong relationships with the community and stakeholders. The sessions are led by experts in governance with a healthcare background.

Fellows meet in person four times a year at the MHA headquarters in Okemos and participate in virtual sessions held in the months when fellows are not meeting in person. This format is designed to give board members the opportunity to fit this valuable learning into their busy schedules.

Graduates of the fellowship have high praise for the fellowship, as demonstrated by a video of graduates’ testimonials. Applications are currently being accepted for the 2022 – 2023 Excellence in Governance Fellowship, which will be held from October 2022 through June 2023. To further explore this one-of-a-kind offering, contact Erin Steward at the MHA.

News to Know – Week of Dec. 13

The MHA welcomes AbilitiCBT by LifeWorks as a new Endorsed Business Partner that can help healthcare organizations support and enhance the mental health of their employees — which is especially critical now, with employee burnout and turnover reaching record heights. AbilitiCBT by LifeWorks is an innovative, internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (iCBT) solution guided by professional therapists and delivered through a secure, digital platform that’s accessible through any device (smartphone, tablet, computer). AbilitiCBT combines the same clinical efficacy of in-person therapy with the convenience of virtual access. To learn more about opportunities available or to schedule a demo of AbilitiCBT by LifeWorks, contact Carey McKenzie, senior vice president at LifeWorks.

MiPLUS, the Bureau of Professional Licensing (BPL) licensing platform, sends an electronic copy of a provider license via email as soon as it is issued or renewed. Electronic copies of licenses are also stored in individual MiPLUS accounts and can be accessed at any time. Therefore, paper copies of licenses will no longer be automatically mailed upon issuance or renewal beginning Jan. 1. Licensees may choose during the application or renewal process to have a paper copy of their license mailed. Questions may be directed to the BPL at (517) 241-0199 or to Paige Fults at the MHA.

The MHA recently submitted comments to the United States departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury and the Office of Personnel Management regarding the No Surprises Act Part 2 regulations scheduled to take effect Jan. 1. The MHA continues to review how the federal law intersects with the Michigan surprise billing law. Members are encouraged to share these comments with partners and stakeholders and to contact Lauren LaPine at the MHA with any questions.

News to Know – Week of Nov. 22

MHA offices will be closed Nov. 25 and 26 in recognition of Thanksgiving and will reopen Nov. 29. The MHA Monday Report will not be published Nov. 29, but timely news will continue to be posted in the MHA Newsroom prior to publication of the Dec. 6 edition of Monday Report. Best wishes for a safe and healthy holiday!

The MHA will offer a webinar on Unemployment Compensation and Vaccine Mandates at 10 a.m. EST Dec. 9. Attorneys from the MHA Unemployment Compensation Program will discuss the various issues impacting vaccine mandate unemployment claims and provide guidance for employers on how to address such claims. The webinar is free of charge for MHA members and UCP clients, but registration is required. Questions may be directed to Neil MacVicar at the MHA.

The MHA will host a free webinar from noon to 12:45 p.m. EST Dec. 9 to review new requirements from The Joint Commission on workplace violence that take effect in January. MHA Endorsed Business Partner HSS will review the updated areas of the accreditation standards and what hospitals need to do to comply. The webinar is free of charge for MHA members, but registration is required. In addition, HSS offers an online version of its Techniques for Effective Aggression Management (TEAM®) that is fully compliant with government requirements. Members are encouraged to view a demonstration of the online TEAM Essentials eLearning program. Questions on the upcoming webinar or the online program may be directed to Seth Karnes at HSS.

Healthcare Organizations Gather Virtually for Michigan Health Equity Summit

Kevin Ahmaad Jenkins, PhDNearly 137 safety and quality professionals participated in the virtual Michigan Health Equity Summit Nov. 3 hosted by the Michigan Public Health Institute, the Michigan State University Institute for Health Policy and the MHA Keystone Center, with funding provided by the Michigan Health Endowment Fund. The event explored how hospitals can continue expanding their work in achieving health equity and eliminating disparities.

The summit featured Kevin Ahmaad Jenkins, PhD, who discussed the need to change culture and rebuild. He challenged members to ensure that the change they implement will lead to the sought-after results and engage the appropriate people. He shared the need to look at the process and not just the outcome to eliminate inequity, as pointing out inequities doesn’t make a change; acting to establish equity through access does.

Additionally, Brenda Jegede, manager, Office of Equity & Minority Health, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), discussed Michigan’s requirements for implicit bias training for healthcare workers. She also shared the MDHHS’ health equity strategies, including a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Council; mandatory DEI training; institutionalizing the use of an equity impact assessment tool; and minority health capacity building grants to fund local organizations to address social determinants of health.

Spectrum Health Lakeland and Bronson Healthcare shared goals and information learned since focusing on health equity. Lynn Todman, vice president, health equity, Spectrum Health Lakeland, shared the hospital’s goal is to have at least 75% of race, ethnicity and language data captured during the registration process and to start collecting sexual orientation and gender identity data. Beth Washington, vice president, community health, equity and inclusion, Bronson Healthcare, shared that Bronson’s data reflected a significant increase in the number of area residents who speak the Arabic language and learned the community had recently become identified as a refugee resettlement site.

Jenkins closed out the summit reminding participants to lead with DEI in mind, encouraging them not to speak for someone without first speaking with that person, to avoid “guilt-centered dumps” and not to let the paralysis of inequity win.

A recording of the summit is available on the MHA Community site. Questions may be directed to the MHA Keystone Center.

Medication for Opioid Use Disorder Cuts Hospital Costs, Improves Patient Care

The MHA Keystone Center is working alongside the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan (CFSEM) through the Michigan Opioid Partnership to provide funding and technical assistance for the emergency department-based medication for opioid use disorder (ED MOUD) program. The program will increase access to medication for OUD statewide and connect patients receiving MOUD with appropriate resources to continue care in the community. An online video provides additional information on the program.

The CFSEM recently released impact stories highlighting successes of the program from previous participants. Andrew King, MD, an emergency room physician at Detroit Medical Center and advisor to the CFSEM, has witnessed the effectiveness of MOUD and reminds practitioners that it is possible to guide those with OUD down a path to recovery.

“I can see the people who are now on medications and feeling much better and doing well. They are happy and putting their lives back together, and that’s a beautiful thing!” King says. “By controlling the disease process, maybe they’re treating their kids or their spouse better or they’re doing a better job at work. That’s the whole point of why we signed up for this job — trying to keep people safe and healthy and in the game for as long as possible.” An article from the CFSEM provides additional information.

The MHA has also been advocating to improve legislation related to ED MOUD by working with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to ensure all hospitals interested in starting an emergency department-based medication assisted treatment program have the funding resources to do so.

Members with questions on the ED MOUD program may contact the MHA Keystone Center.

Trustee Insights Edition Explores DEI and Supporting Nursing Professions

The latest edition of Trustee Insights, the monthly digital package from the American Hospital Association (AHA), is now available. This month’s issue includes an article about the board’s role in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). As DEI strategies are developed and ultimately woven into everyday policy and procedure, boards should play a significant role in lending support, driving accountability and inspiring culture in those strategies. Two areas of emphasis are recognizing the increasing prominence DEI plays in quality and playing an important role as vocal leaders to move DEI forward.

There is also a link to the quantitative and qualitative research done by Johnson & Johnson, the American Nurses Association and the American Organization for Nursing Leadership that evaluate the impacts of the pandemic on the nursing profession. The research provides next steps and promising practices that will be essential in delivering the full potential of the nursing profession

The expanded website and enhanced monthly e-newsletter of Trustee Insights are available through the AHA Trustee Services webpage. They are free, do not require AHA membership and include articles, tools and webinars. Those interested in subscribing to AHA Trustee Insights may do so online.

For information about MHA trustee resources, contact Erin Steward at the MHA.

Medicare Inpatient/LTCH Rule Comments Due June 28; MHA Drafts Available

The MHA has prepared draft comment letters to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding the proposed rules to update the Medicare fee-for-service prospective payment systems (PPSs) for fiscal year (FY) 2022 for inpatient and long-term care hospitals (LTCHs). The letters are now available for member review prior to the 5 p.m. June 28 submission deadline.

Comments on the FY 2022 inpatient PPS proposed rule focus specifically on:

  • Expressing appreciation of the CMS’ proposal to repeal the requirement for hospitals to report median charges and negotiated payment rates for Medicare Advantage (MA) plans by Medicare-severity diagnosis-related group.
  • Requesting an extension of the Medicare wage index stop-loss transition policy.
  • Supporting improvement of the area wage index for hospitals in the bottom quartile and encouraging the CMS to locate additional funds rather than reducing the standard operating rate for all hospitals.
  • Opposing the $600 million decrease in the uncompensated care pool.
  • Improving the allocation of additional medical residency slots included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act.
  • Objecting to the proposed changes for organ acquisitions.
  • Restoring the American Taxpayer Relief Act documentation and coding offset.
  • Releasing the final program factors for the three Medicare quality-based programs prior to Oct. 1.

Comments on the following topics are included in the letters for both the inpatient and LTCH PPS rules:

  • Opposing the addition of the COVID-19 Healthcare Personnel vaccine in the quality reporting programs.
  • Closing the health equity gap.
  • Using fast healthcare interoperative resources. 

Members are encouraged to review these draft letters and submit comments electronically to the CMS by using the website’s search feature to find file code “1752-P.”  Members may direct questions on the proposed rules to Vickie Kunz at the MHA.