Effective July 25, 2021: Changes to State Law on Mental Health Advance Directives

This bulletin provides hospitals information on recent changes to 71.32 RCW, Washington’s law authorizing mental health advance directives (MHADs).... Read More >>

Update to Section 1557 Nondiscrimination Final Rule

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform hospitals and health systems of a change of interpretation to section 1557, the nondiscrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). On May 10, 2021, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it will interpret section 1557 to prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.... Read More >>

New State Law Requirements For Health Care Worker Protections During A Declared State of Emergency

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform hospitals and health systems about legislation enacted in the 2021 legislative session requiring additional worker protections during the currently declared state of emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as in the event of any future public health emergencies. These new laws, ESSB 5115 and ESSB 5190, are now in effect. ... Read More >>

New Requirements for Critical Access Hospitals, Small Hospitals, and Sole Community Hospitals

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform critical access hospitals, small hospitals with fewer than 25 beds in operation, and sole community hospitals that Substitute House Bill 1155, legislation regarding staffing requirements enacted in 2019, is effective for your hospitals on July 1, 2021.... Read More >>

New Federal Buprenorphine Guidelines Reduce Barriers to Treatment

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform hospitals about the new buprenorphine practice guidelines issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), effective April 28, 2021. The new guidance removes a key barrier to obtaining an X-Waiver for prescribing buprenorphine by exempting covered practitioners from certain requirements. This regulatory change will make it easier for practitioners to obtain an X-Waiver to prescribe buprenorphine to patients with opioid use disorder (OUD).... Read More >>

New PQAC and L&I COVID-19 Safety Guidance

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform hospitals about the new COVID-19 safety guidance for pharmacies issued by Washington State’s Pharmacy Quality Assurance Commission (PQAC) and Department of Labor & Industries (L&I).... Read More >>

New Clean Buildings Standard: Start Planning for Compliance

The purpose of this bulletin is to inform hospitals and health systems about the new clean buildings standard that requires compliance as early as June 1, 2026. ... Read More >>

Congress passes American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package with significant impacts on hospitals and health systems.... Read More >>

WSHA and AWPHD Report on 2020 Lobbying Expenses for Medicare Cost Reports

The purpose of this Bulletin is to inform WSHA and AWPHD members of the proportion of membership dues used for lobbying purposes... Read More >>

Permitted disclosures of mental health information and substance use disorder information without patient consent

The purpose of this bulletin is to provide psychiatric hospitals and acute care hospitals with inpatient behavioral health programs or that accept Single Bed Certification guidance on when they may disclose information related to mental health and substance use disorder (SUD) treatment to a patient’s family and other close relations without the patient’s consent.... Read More >>

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