News from Washington D.C.

Panel Clears Hospital Bill: The House Ways and Means Committee has approved legislation that would extend the time hospitals have to qualify to be grandfathered into the existing payment system for services provided in off-campus, provider-based clinics. Washington Rep. Jim McDermott was the lead Democratic sponsor of the measure. WSHA supported the bill.... Read More >>

Doing our part on the opioid epidemic

Hospital leaders across the state are committed to doing our part to stop the opioid abuse epidemic. We are very excited about a new state law that expands access to the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP).... Read More >>

Survey: 15.5 million fewer adults uninsured than in 2013

An estimated 15.5 million fewer U.S. adults were uninsured in March 2016 than September 2013, shortly before the Health Insurance Marketplaces opened for enrollment, according to the Urban Institute's latest Health Reform Monitoring Survey. The proportion of uninsured non-elderly adults declined 7.7 percentage points over the period, to 9.9 percent, the survey estimates.... Read More >>

Capital funding for mental health beds available

Over the last several years, WSHA has lobbied the state legislature to make significant investments in mental health. This work has resulted in tens of millions of dollars for capital funding for mental health beds. Using this funding, a number of new mental health beds have already opened and many more are in development.... Read More >>

Insurance Commissioner considering rule changes for prior authorizations: Your input needed!

In response to provider and enrollee concerns, the Office of the Insurance Commissioner (OIC) announced it is considering rulemaking to provide more specific requirements relating to health plan prior authorizations. The rules would provide greater transparency and predictability for the prior authorization process and minimize the burden of the process on consumers.... Read More >>

Study shows positive outcomes in critical access hospitals

A new study in the Journal of American Medical Association that examined the surgical outcomes and expenditures for Medicare beneficiaries in critical access hospitals (CAHs) found that patients in CAHs had outcomes equal to or better than their non-CAH counterparts.... Read More >>

Rural Advocacy Days: Sign up to voice your support for rural hospitals

Rural hospital leaders and board members have an excellent opportunity to connect with members of Congress during WSHA’s Rural Advocacy Days in Washington D.C., Sept. 20 and 21. This year’s Congressional agenda will include physician supervision, opioid abuse prevention, mental health, site neutral payment cuts, telemedicine and other proposals impacting rural hospitals. ... Read More >>

Budget Neutrality Adjustment Factors: Adjustments to Medicaid Rates

This bulletin provides hospitals with information about recent rate notification changes effective June 1stfrom the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA). It also provides information about additional rate changes that may be implemented over the next six months.... Read More >>

City of Seattle Shift Survey Participation – Due June 30, 2016

The City of Seattle is considering new restrictions on shift schedules for those working in the city limits. As part of this effort, the city’s Office of Labor standards is conducting a shift scheduling survey for both employers and employees in the greater Seattle area. The survey is intended for all shift workers, and has the potential for significant impact on health care shift workers.... Read More >>

HCA in process of finalizing Safety Net Assessment program

The Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) is in the process of finalizing the Safety Net Assessment program for the state’s 2017 fiscal year, which begins July 1, 2016. WSHA expects the program to remain stable and relatively unchanged compared to 2016.... Read More >>

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