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July 10, 2020 News Headlines

HANYS joins coalition urging Congress to increase FMAP

HANYS joined more than 100 organizations in signing a letter spearheaded by the National Governors Association urging Congress to include an additional increase to the federal medical assistance percentage for the Medicaid program in the next COVID-19 response legislation. 

Specifically, the letter, sent yesterday to Senate and House leadership, asks for an additional 5.8 percentage points to be added to the 6.2 provided in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (bringing the total to an additional 12 percentage points), retroactive to Jan. 1 and extending until Sept. 30, 2021.

“Boosting the Federal Medical Assistance Percentages, which is the linchpin of the federal-state partnership that provides health care for more than 70 million Americans, will help ensure that people in every state and territory have access to critical, often life-saving, health care,” NGA wrote in its press release announcing the letter.

“[I]n fiscal year 2019 Medicaid was the largest expenditure for states, accounting for nearly 29% of total spending from all funds. The COVID-19 pandemic is drastically shrinking state and local revenue with most states experiencing a budget shortfall ranging between 5% and 20%. Even states with a lower shortfall will be challenged to provide adequate healthcare services to their residents. This leaves state and local leaders with tough choices to balance their budgets while responding to a pandemic,” the letter states.

The letter also called on the federal government to rescind the proposed Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Rule, which would significantly limit how states finance their Medicaid program. HANYS opposition to MFAR as well as support for additional increases in FMAP remain key federal advocacy priorities for the next COVID-19 relief package. Contact: Cristina Batt

HTNYS cancels 2020 Annual Trustee Conference

After careful consideration and in consultation with members, Healthcare Trustees of New York State has made the difficult decision to cancel its 2020 Annual Trustee Conference, which was scheduled for Sept. 25-26 in Syracuse. 

This decision follows the cancelation of many other HANYS and HTNYS events because of the COVID-19 pandemic. We understand our members need to be focused on recovering from this crisis and we are committed to continuing to support you through this difficult time and in the aftermath.

In lieu of the in-person Conference, HTNYS plans to host three of the plenary sessions virtually in the fall, as they provide timely information relevant to the role of trustees:

  • Board Leadership in Times of Disruption and Crisis;
  • “When Good Isn’t Good Enough:” How Unconscious Bias Harms Patients … Despite Our Good Intentions; and
  • Enhancing the Health of Our Communities.

Look for more information and registration for this virtual series in the coming weeks. Additionally, please mark your calendars for next year’s Trustee Conference:  Sept. 24 - 25, 2021, at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. Contact: Kristen Phillips

HANYS Solutions partners with AWFS to reduce contract labor costs

HANYS Solutions has partnered with Adaptive Workforce Solutions to help HANYS’ members reduce the significant cost of contract labor and to ensure you have the appropriate staff you need. 

Healthcare providers’ labor costs have skyrocketed amid the ongoing workforce shortage and, more recently, with the high demand for clinicians during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data from 2019 show the total spend on contract labor for hospitals and health systems in the United States is about $28 billion and New York hospitals and health systems represent approximately $1.3 billion of that contract labor spend.

Through this partnership, HANYS members will have access to state-of-the-art, impartial vendor management system technology at no cost. A team of experienced experts in managing contract labor will provide transparent and reliable workforce management solutions for centralizing your entire contract labor process. Contact: Terry August

IPRO’s Nursing Home Collaborative provides free support for community pandemic response

COVID-19 has changed healthcare and significantly impacted the organizations that care for our most vulnerable patients. HANYS is working with IPRO to sign up member healthcare organizations for the Nursing Home Quality Care Collaborative to address these changes. COVID-19 has now been integrated into the original goals of the program and it will support technical assistance on rapid response, emergency management and infection control.

Over the next five years, IPRO’s quality improvement teams will provide participating nursing homes, home care organizations and their community partners with free resources and support focusing on building system-level capacity for rapid response to health and environmental disaster preparedness, performing organization and community self-assessments for managing emergencies, adoption and implementation of infection control strategies and dissemination and assistance with implementation of evidence-based and emerging best practices.

IPRO will connect providers across the care continuum with community-based organizations, identify community-specific needs, share best practices and help participating organizations implement interventions to enhance the overall health of their communities.

All participating organizations will have access to educational resources and tools, health information technology support, data analysis and reporting, peer-to-peer collaboration, person and family engagement insight and online learning.

More information and frequently asked questions are available on the IPRO website. Email “Yes; I’m interested” to Dora Fisher at dfisher@hanys.org and IPRO will contact you to register. Contact: Dora Fisher

Member Spotlight – Erie County Medical Center enhances concurrent HCV infection and substance abuse treatment

More than 2.5 million people in the United States are living with the hepatitis C virus, with those who inject drugs at the greatest risk for contracting and transmitting HCV. Chronic HCV infections contribute to high morbidity and mortality. These individuals remain at risk if they do not receive adequate substance abuse treatment. In 2012, Erie County Medical Center developed a novel treatment plan to best serve these patients.

Read our full story to learn more about this initiative and its results.

This story is just one of the many initiatives profiled on HANYS' Member Spotlight website that demonstrate how New York healthcare providers are investing in forward-looking initiatives that improve care quality and health outcomes. 

Upcoming events

HANYS continues to closely monitor the governor’s reopening guidelines and assess how we can continue to best and safely offer our robust educational programming in this next phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. Be sure to check out our current offerings in our events listing, including our wide array of COVID-19-related webinars aimed at helping our members recover from this unprecedented experience.

To help healthcare organizations advance their leadership capabilities and position themselves to meet the demands of these turbulent times, HANYS has teamed up with Cornell SC Johnson College of Business at Cornell University to host Leading Through Turbulent Times. Register now for this new virtual event and see the full program agenda on our website.