COVID work continues with policy response

May 29, 2020

WSHA has been working with many of our health care and other community partners to assist with the re-opening of non-urgent medical and dental procedures. At the same time, our team has also been engaging with the broader policies surrounding the COVID-19 response.

Back in April, WSHA sent a letter to the Health Care Authority, urging it to use the increase in the federal match rate from the new COVID-19 funding to increase payments to providers caring for COVID-19 Medicaid patients. WSHA asked the HCA to ensure payments for COVID-19 inpatient services and testing services reflected the cost to the hospital.

HCA responded to WSHA’s letter, indicating it was correcting issues with the state’s APDRG grouper to enable payment of claims with COVID-19 diagnoses and would be providing a 20 percent add-on payment for COVID-19 inpatient stays, consistent with Medicare payment policy.

WSHA also created a universal masking policy recommendation for our member hospitals and health systems to use. It was developed under the leadership of WSHA special advisor Jeff Sconyers and reviewed by the WSHA COVID-19 Clinician Support work group. It is available online and I encourage you to use it.

We are also continuing with PPE acquiring and distribution – most recently the team delivered PPE to King County Public Health and King County Metro Transit. If you would like to order PPE from WSHA, please contact Valeria Aussem at


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