WEEKLY MESSAGE FROM MHA

  • HSCRC’s Maryland Model Vision

    October 18, 2021
    The Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) began strategic planning efforts over the summer to define the ideal future position for HSCRC and the Maryland Model over the next decade. Last week HSCRC revealed a new aspirational vision statement for Maryland’s Total Cost of Care Model: “The Maryland Model, stabilized and embracing a population health approach for all providers, will serve as the nation’s leader in health equity, quality, access, total cost, and consumer experience by leveraging value-based payment methodologies across all payers.”
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  • Post-Acute Partnerships

    October 11, 2021
    For 20 months, hospitals have grappled with COVID-19 patient surges. And we now feel additional pressures due to the unprecedented workforce shortages and financial strains. Last week, during an appearance at the Health Facilities Association of Maryland’s annual conference, I reflected on another persistent challenge—transitioning people out of hospitals and into post-acute care (PAC) facilities to make space for acute patients.
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  • Advancing Health Equity

    October 04, 2021
    Included in a slew of new Maryland laws that took effect Friday were several priority bills championed by MHA and your hospitals to advance health equity. These necessary laws—delivering proper training, data, and collaboration to close long-standing inequities—rounded out our bold health equity agenda in the 2021 legislative session.
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  • Pathways Forward

    September 27, 2021
    Last week MHA’s principal governing body, the Executive Committee, met to explore ways to secure the future of the Total Cost of Care Model. At the start, they heard from Maryland Health Secretary Dennis Schrader and Health Services Cost Review Commission Chair Adam Kane that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services wants more value: more cost savings, more care transformation, more health care quality improvement and disparities reduction, and more work to advance population health.
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  • Strengthening the Hospital Workforce

    September 20, 2021
    Maryland hospitals have faced staffing challenges for as long as many of us can remember. Now, more than 560 days into the COVID-19 pandemic, these problems have become much more acute. The American Nurses Association earlier this month urged the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to declare the current and unsustainable nurse staffing shortage a national crisis.
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  • Collective Action for Greater Good

    September 14, 2021
    Maryland hospitals and health systems have battled together against COVID-19 from the start. You’ve shared your expertise, your beds, and other precious resources. You’ve also jointly advocated in the best interests of your patients, communities, and state to lead our way out of this crisis.
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  • Solving Workforce Challenges

    September 02, 2021
    This Labor Day weekend, our second under the cloud of the COVID-19, we are thankful for your strength, talent, and resilience. You and your teams have worked more than 500 days and saved the lives of almost 46,000 Marylanders. Now, you are being tested again as the Delta variant once again fills your hospitals with COVID patients.
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  • Md. Hospitals Remain at Forefront of COVID Defense

    August 23, 2021
    Last week, Gov. Larry Hogan announced a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for hospital and nursing home staff. Under the orders, employees must have at least a first dose by Sept. 1, or face regular screening and testing. Maryland hospitals, of course, led early on vaccination. In June, UMMS and JHHS simultaneously announced they would require COVID vaccines for employees.
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  • Back-to-School Uncertainty

    August 16, 2021
    For many students returning to school in the coming weeks, it will be their first time learning in person in more than a year. In-person learning has rightly been prioritized to help students’ social, mental, and emotional well-being, to curb the digital divide that puts some students at a disadvantage, and to improve academic outcomes.
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  • Vaccination Push Grows

    August 09, 2021
    “Just get the damn vaccine.” Gov. Larry Hogan’s message was clear during Thursday’s press conference: The state is focused on COVID-19 vaccination as our best hope to save lives and return to normal.
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  • Vaccine Commitment

    August 02, 2021
    COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are once again climbing nationwide, and we’re seeing slight, but continuous increases in Maryland. This along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s finding that the virus can be prevalent in the airways of vaccinated people and thus spread faster, mean that there is more work to do.
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  • Staying in the Fight for Liability Reform

    July 26, 2021
    Maryland hospitals and health systems have long recognized that the medical liability system in our state is broken. It serves attorneys, not patients. MHA and your government affairs leaders persistently advocate for reform, but the system remains unfair—and unsustainable.
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  • Variants Present New Challenge in COVID Fight

    July 19, 2021
    On July 1 our state reached a welcome milestone—fewer than 100 COVID-19 inpatients statewide. That figure has crept above 100 again, but many of your teams—including Frederick Health, Meritus Health, Adventist White Oak Medical Center, Luminis Health, and Suburban Hospital—celebrated a remarkable achievement in recent weeks: Zero COVID inpatients.
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  • CMS Maryland Model Performance Evaluation

    July 12, 2021
    It’s working. That’s the assessment of the first two years of our Total Cost of Care Model released Friday by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
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  • A Model Health Care System

    June 28, 2021
    Here in Maryland, we recognize our health care system’s unique ability to rein in total spending and strengthen whole-person care. We as a field have made strides demonstrating the value of the Maryland Model. As we approach important milestones in the effort to gain extension of our contract with the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI), we are committed to doing even more to communicate its benefits.
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  • Promise of ACA Remains Intact

    June 21, 2021
    Last Thursday the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a 7-2 decision, rejecting the third challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The court’s majority did not rule on the merits of the case but rather concluded the plaintiffs lacked standing because they weren’t harmed by the ACA provisions they found problematic.
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  • Investment in Future of Md. Hospitals

    June 14, 2021
    The Health Services Cost Review Commission’s (HSCRC) move Wednesday to raise global revenue budgets 0.2% above inflation—or 20 basis points—will provide welcome resources as we enter the next phase of our recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
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  • Laying the Groundwork for More Success

    June 07, 2021
    Last month, Gov. Larry Hogan announced his final legislative decisions from the 2021 session. He let some bills become law without his signature, notably the Health Equity Resource Act and MHA’s other priority equity bills, as well as the Medical Debt Protection Act and Essential Workers Protection Act.
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  • Mental Well Being for Health Leaders

    May 24, 2021
    We all know that health has both physical and mental aspects. During this pandemic our mental health has been challenged in ways we would have never imagined. You and your hospital teams have lived the trauma of COVID-19 on the job while still balancing your own home lives.
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  • Proving Care Is Transforming Under the Maryland Model

    May 17, 2021
    In two years, the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) will complete an evaluation of Maryland Model performance. That’s a key step in securing the federal government’s decision to extend the Model well into the future.
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