Comments are due by 5 p.m. on February 26, 2021.
Legislative update – State legislative session approaches important deadline
The state legislative session approaches it first major deadline this week as Senate bills must be heard in Senate committees and House bills in House committee by Friday, February 19. Bills not heard or passed in their assigned committees by Friday will effectively be “dead,” though it is still possible for a bill to be resurrected using a strike-everything amendment.
The status of priority and key bills may be found on our website by visiting azhha.org/azhha_priority_and_key_legislation. Members who wish to learn more about the bills are encouraged to attend our weekly legislative update calls held on Fridays.
Action alert: Ask Senators Sinema and Kelly to support key policy priorities in $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package next week with an expected passage via party line vote. Following the vote, the U.S. Senate will then consider the legislative package.
There are two specific policy priorities we are asking Arizona’s Senators to support as amendments to the legislation: (1) an extension of the moratorium on Medicare sequester cuts; and (2) forgiveness of Medicare accelerated payment debt. Other legislative priorities include additional Provider Relief Funding and additional resources to bolster vaccination outreach, planning, administration and distribution efforts.
In explaining the need for debt forgiveness and the moratorium on sequestration cuts, background information could be shared describing:
- the deep and persistent financial challenges hospitals continue to face including the astronomical costs of preparing for surges of COVID-19 patients,
- added expenses due to supply chain and labor market disruptions,
- months of essential hospital revenue being erased due to the combination of a forced shutdown and slowdown of regular operations for non-emergent care and
- the high cost of treating patients with COVID-19.
AHCCCS releases DAP preliminary public notice
The Arizona Health Care Cost and Containment System (AHCCCS) has released a Preliminary Public Notice for Differential Adjusted Payments (DAP) for CYE 2022 with dates of service beginning October 1, 2022, through September 30, 2022. AzHHA is reviewing the notice and encourages members to submit their input. Comments are due by 5 p.m. on February 26, 2021. Comments may be submitted via email to [email protected].
Special open enrollment opened Monday
President Biden signed an Executive Order last month creating a special open enrollment period beginning February 15. The special enrollment period which ends May 15, 2021 will allow individuals to purchase a health insurance plan through the health insurance marketplace. In addition to purchasing a new plan, individuals will also have the opportunity to switch to a different plan.
COVID-19 vaccine information
The federal government has partnered with 21 national pharmacy chains and independent pharmacy networks to help administer COVID-19 vaccine in communities across the United States as part of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination. The initial phased implementation of the program began this month. To find a vaccine site or to search for an appointment, visit the Arizona Department of Health Services’ website.
Help patients navigate through the complexities of COVID-19 related symptoms with Palliative Care Telehealth
Patients experiencing acute or chronic COVID-19 symptoms and related complications have another resource available for their care. Palliative Care Telehealth is a referral source for healthcare providers across Arizona to help their patients navigate through the complexities of COVID-19 related symptoms, or those chronic conditions exacerbated by COVID-19. Patients referred to this free service will be able to consult with a palliative care specialist for symptom management or goals of care. After the consultation, the palliative care specialist will collaborate with the referring provider on any changes to the plan of care.
This program is administered by AzHHA with a grant from the Arizona Department of Health Services. There is no charge to the patient or referring provider to use this service.
Visit our website for more resources including patient and provider flyers and frequently asked questions: https://palliative.vsee.me/u/clinic.
Webinar: CMS condition of participation compliance
CMS published the Interoperability and Patient Access final rule May 2020 adding a new Condition of Participation (CoP) for hospitals in which hospitals must be compliant by May 2, 2021. In response to the final rule, Health Current has developed the CMS CoP Compliance Support services to assist hospitals in meeting the new CMS Patient Event Notifications requirement. Health Current will be offering its CMS CoP compliance support webinar on February 23 at 1 p.m. and on February 24 at 9 a.m. For more information about the support services or to register for a webinar, click here.
Enhance your organization’s audio-visual systems with Remar Technologies Group
With an ongoing shift in patient expectations and technology, healthcare organizations have begun upgrading and investing in infrastructure for hospital TV systems to improve the patient experience. Internet protocol television (IPTV) allows patients to experience high-definition TV in their room as they would in their own home during a medical event. Remar Technologies Group, a Vizient-certified vendor, certified integrator and licensed contractor, provides hospital-grade televisions and IPTV/ DirecTV systems nationwide. In addition, Remar offers modular patient interactive systems, including:
- video engagement systems for medical staff to patient interactions.
- audio-visual systems for huddle or emergency response rooms.
- audio -visual systems for staff training or conference rooms.
- an IPV platform integrating with variety of software systems and hospital applications to centralize and deliver interactive patient communications, personalized patient education, real-time surveys, food service, and more.
Visit RemarTG.com or call 602-944-6700 to learn more about how Remar can meet your organization’s audio-visual needs.
February 24 – Futurescan 2021-2026 Insights: Transforming Health Care While Responding to a Pandemic
Futurescan 2021-2026 explores key forces and important insights designed to prepare hospital and health system leaders for the future. In its upcoming webinar, the Society for Health Care Strategy & Market Development will feature Ian Morrison, Ph. D. who will discuss the latest edition of Futurescan 2021-2026, forward-looking report of trends in the healthcare field and the transformation of healthcare. Registrants may be selected to provide insights on up-coming Futurescan reports. Register here.
February 25 – Webinar: Cardiac coding tips and guideline review
In conjunction with American Heart Month, AzHHA’s Affiliated Partner, NJHA-HBS invites you to join them on February 25 for its live webinar session Cardiac coding tips and guideline review. This program geared towards health information management professionals (HIM), will review and reinforce coding concepts related to the heart. Register here.
March 17 – Introduction to POLST workshop
The one-hour Introduction to POLST workshop equips healthcare professionals with knowledge and resources to begin using POLST in Arizona. The objectives are to describe what POLST is at the state and national level, explain why POLST is important, define the population for POLST, when to begin the conversation and who completes POLST, describe the process for completing, reviewing and updating POLST and learn the process of submitting healthcare planning documents to the Arizona Healthcare Directive Registry. Register here.
April 15 & 16 – AzCHER virtual conference
AzCHER’s premiere conference will occur on April 15, and 16, 2021. The two-day event (9 a.m. - 12 p.m. each day) features a packed agenda with keynote speakers addressing the recent Estes Park, Colorado wildfire and the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas. Eight break-out sessions will also be offered. Visit the AzCHER website to register and view the full agenda.
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