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March 12, 2021 News Headlines

President Biden signs $1.9 trillion relief bill

President Biden signed the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package, the American Rescue Plan Act, on Thursday.

HANYS is grateful for the strong leadership of Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY), Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and the entire New York congressional delegation who worked to secure $350 billion for state and local governments — a top priority for HANYS in Washington. These critical funds will help the state mitigate its significant budget gap, which puts the state’s Medicaid program at risk.

Learn how the many provisions in the bill may affect HANYS members in our summary. Contact: Elyse Oveson

HANYS applauds Supreme Court decision to toss public charge immigration case

Following a request from the Biden administration, the U.S. Supreme Court this week dismissed a case concerning the “public charge” rule, signaling a likely end to the restrictive immigration policy that has been heavily litigated in recent years. The Trump administration policy expanded the types of benefits considered as part of a public charge determination that could be used to affect an individual’s ability to enter the United States or obtain legal permanent resident status.

HANYS has long argued that the changes to the public charge standard will harm patients, increase healthcare costs and deter entire populations from accessing critical programs and services for which they are currently eligible. Contact: Elyse Oveson

State legislative activity update

Gov. Cuomo has approved 65 bills in 2021. Over the past week, the following bill of interest to HANYS and our members was signed into law:

Termination of Certain Executive Powers (Chapter 71 of 2021) – modifies the governor’s emergency powers to prohibit the issuance of new directives. Directives issued prior to enactment and still in effect may be extended or modified, as long as certain requirements are met. The new law also requires, within 15 days of its effective date, all current suspensions and directives be posted online in a searchable format. This act is effective immediately.

Over the past week, the following bills of interest to HANYS and our members have passed both houses and are awaiting delivery to the governor:

NYSED Data Collection on the Practice of Professions – requires all health professionals to complete a brief survey as part of their triennial registration process. Reportable information includes demographics, education and practice characteristics to significantly expand health workforce data. A.3050 (Fahy) / S.3543 (Stavisky)

Antimicrobial Stewardship Programs – requires hospitals and nursing homes to establish an antimicrobial stewardship program that meets or exceeds Medicare and Medicaid standards and requires certain personnel to receive antimicrobial resistance training. A.5847 (Woerner) / S.2191 (Kavanagh)

For questions on the above or any other legislative activity or issue, please contact our state governmental affairs team: Amy Nickson, vice president, governmental affairs; Katie Gordon, director, research and legislation; Scott Janke, director, state governmental affairs.

Podcast details The Joint Commission’s offsite surveys

The latest episode of Take 5, a podcast from The Joint Commission, details its off-site survey process, adapted in response to COVID-19. Listen to the podcast to learn more about the new off-site survey model and how organizations can prepare for it. Contact: Kathy Rauch

HTNYS' Trends: How to safely return to in-person meetings

Hospital and health system boards quickly adapted to virtual board meetings in 2020, which encouraged streamlined agendas and thoughtful pre-meeting planning and preparation. However, there’s no substitute for in-person robust strategic deliberation.

With safety protocols in place, it may be time for healthcare trustees to consider returning to the boardroom. Learn tips for safety protocols to implement in the March edition of Trends. Contact: Kristen Phillips

Member Spotlight: NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue emphasizes patient-primary care physician continuity

The backbone of adult primary care is continuity between a patient and their primary care provider, which leads to improved efficiency, less waste, better quality outcomes and increased patient satisfaction. In 2017, NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue started an initiative to improve patient-primary care physician continuity by redesigning its scheduling templates and contact center scripting.

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

March 17: Physician Wellness and Peer-to-Peer Program

March 19: HANYS Government Relations Update

March 24: COVID-19 Bacterial and Fungal Co-infections; Update for Clinicians, Antimicrobial Stewards and Infection Preventionists

March 24: Beyond the Behavioral Health Unit: Managing Mental Health

March 25: Health Information Management User Group Meeting

March 31: Leveraging the Acute Care Health System to Support Long-term Care During COVID-19

April 1: Innovative Technology in ER and Triage Care

See all of HANYS’ current offerings in our events listing.