MHA Monday Report March 13, 2023

MHA Monday Report

Supplemental Signed into Law, MHA Provides Additional Testimony

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a supplemental appropriation bill on March 8 that includes $75 million for hospital recruitment, retention and training of healthcare workers. The funding was included as a part of House Bill 4016 …

MyMichigan Medical Center Alpena Nurse Receives Q1 MHA Keystone Center Speak-up! Award

The MHA Keystone Center presented Laura Smith, RN at MyMichigan Medical Center Alpena, with the quarterly MHA Keystone Center Speak-up! Award, which celebrates individuals or teams in Michigan hospitals demonstrating a commitment to the prevention …

Webinar Outlines Considerations for the End of the Public Health Emergency

The Department of Health and Human Services COVID-19 public health emergency expires May 11, 2023, which may significantly decrease the flexibility providers have become accustomed to. The MHA will host The End of the …

MDHHS Candida auris Patient Transfer Recommendations

Candida auris cases have been reported in multiple healthcare facilities in Michigan, including acute care hospitals, long-term acute care hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. Auris is a yeast pathogen that can cause serious …

MHA Podcast Covers Patient Safety Awareness Week feat. The MHA Keystone Center

The MHA released another episode of the MiCare Champion Cast, which features interviews with healthcare policy experts in Michigan on key issues that impact healthcare and the health of communities. On episode 27, Adam Novak, …

Resources, Webinars Available for Navigating Medicaid Eligibility Changes

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recently released a final policy bulletin informing providers that Medicaid eligibility redeterminations will resume in June 2023 for the first time since early 2020, with some …

Applications Open for Excellence in Governance Fellowship, Prepares Trustees to Lead

The MHA Excellence in Governance Fellowship is now available to healthcare board members looking for innovative, effective ways to lead their organizations as hospitals and health systems navigate financial strain and labor challenges. Applications are …

Governance Webinar Series Helps Trustees Advocate on Important Issues

Every board member must have a common understanding of critical issues, the implications for the hospital or health system and how to share the impact with government and community leaders. Without support, it is difficult …

Deadline Approaching for Early Sponsorship Commitment

The deadline to be featured as a sponsor of the MHA Annual Membership Meeting brochure, which is shared with hospital and health system CEOs, is March 17. The MHA’s sponsors are vital to helping conference …

News to Know

Registration is now open for the MHA Keystone Center Safe Patient Handling Conference.

Brian PetersMHA in the News

The MHA received media coverage the week of March 6 regarding Gov. Whitmer signing House Bill 4016, which will appropriate $75 million for the recruitment, retention and training of hospitals workers. Below is a collection …

Supplemental Signed into Law, MHA Provides Additional Testimony

Laura Appel, executive vice president of Government Relations and Policy. MHA, provided testimony to the Senate’s Health Policy Committee.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a supplemental appropriation bill on March 8 that includes $75 million for hospital recruitment, retention and training of healthcare workers. The funding was included as a part of House Bill (HB) 4016, now Public Act 5 of 2023.

Laura Appel, executive vice president of Government Relations and Policy at the MHA, provided testimony to the Senate’s Health Policy Committee. Appel provided a general overview of the role hospitals play in the healthcare continuum, the continuing post-pandemic patient transfer issues and potential solutions to address these challenges and the workforce crisis.

“The cost of maintaining standby trauma resources is millions of dollars for each level I and II trauma designated hospital location and those costs are incurred regardless of the number of patients that need those services every day,” said Appel.

Lastly, a new bill introduced in the Michigan House of Representatives would make improvements to Michigan’s Healthy Michigan statute. HB 4224, introduced by Rep. Julie Rogers (D-Kalamazoo), would remove Michigan’s Medicaid work requirements. The work requirement is currently disallowed by the courts. The MHA supports HB 4224 and expects additional legislation to make improvements to the Healthy Michigan statute in the coming weeks.

Members with questions about workforce funding or other state legislative action may contact Adam Carlson at the MHA.

Combating the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19): Week of Feb. 14

MHA Covid-19 update

MHA Covid-19 updateThe current surge of hospitalizations due to COVID-19 has continued its downward trend. The seven-day average of hospitalizations in the U.S. as of Feb. 13 was 80,185, down from 136,534 Jan. 20. Michigan hospitalizations for confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19 included 1,896 adults and 71 children as of Feb. 16, down from the Jan. 20 totals of 4,554 adults and 130 children.

The MHA continues to keep members apprised of pandemic-related developments affecting hospitals through email updates and the MHA Coronavirus webpage. Important updates are outlined below.

Governor Signs Supplemental Budget Dedicating $300 Million to Healthcare Workforce

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Feb. 16 signed House Bill 5523, a $1.2 billion supplemental funding bill that includes $300 million for healthcare providers for recruitment, retention and training purposes, $225 million of which will be specifically for acute-care and behavioral health hospitals. MHA Board Chair and BHSH System President & CEO Tina Freese Decker provided comments of appreciation for the governor signing the bill in the official announcement. (See related article.)

MDHHS Rescinds Indoor Mask Advisory with Exceptions

The statewide indoor masking advisory that the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued earlier in the omicron surge was rescinded Feb. 16. However, the state continues to recommend masking in healthcare settings and some other high-risk indoor locations.

While hospitalizations have improved significantly recently, the MHA continues to encourage people to voluntarily wear high-quality masks when in indoor public spaces, especially if they are immunocompromised or haven’t yet been fully vaccinated.

The state also announced that it will monitor and act on COVID-19 cycles in the following three key phases:

  • Response — Local and state public health implement rapid response to a surge. The public may be advised to increase masking, testing and social distancing.
  • Recovery — Post-surge. No immediate resurgence predicted. Local and state public health will monitor conditions that could lead to future surges.
  • Readiness — A surge in cases is expected, with implications for severity of illness and hospital capacity. Increased communication to the public regarding possible new risks.

More Data Sought on Pfizer Vaccine for Children 6 Months through 4 Years

The MHA continues to monitor Pfizer’s actions to seek approval for a vaccine for kids aged 6 months through 4 years. Pfizer recently sought federal approval of the vaccine for this age group, but paused its request days later due to efficacy questions related to dosage. It is now awaiting further data about three doses for this age group before renewing its request for approval under emergency use authorization. The association will keep members apprised of any developments on this or related issues. Members with vaccine questions may contact Ruthanne Sudderth at the MHA.

Additional information on the COVID-19 pandemic is available to members on the MHA Community Site and the MHA COVID-19 webpageQuestions on COVID-19 and infectious disease response strategies may be directed to the MDHHS Community Health Emergency Coordination Center (CHECC).