AHA: Quality measures should follow federal endorsement process   04/08/2013
All quality measures reported via electronic health records or registries should follow the federal quality measure endorsement process, AHA told the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in comments submitted today. America’s hospitals “are committed to fulfilling quality measurement and reporting requirements across several federal and non-federal programs,” wrote Ashley Thompson, AHA vice president and deputy director of policy, responding to a public request for information on the issue. “However, we remain concerned about the challenges and significant burden placed on providers who are trying to meet multiple, often non-aligned quality measurement and reporting requirements. As CMS moves forward, we urge you to consider a construct that balances the opportunities for streamlined reporting with the need for parsimony in the measures selected, maturity of the reporting infrastructure, transparency in the methodology for data collection and performance benchmarks, validation of the reported data and consideration of the cost of provider participation.”
HRSA delays start of 340B GPO guidance   04/08/2013
The Health Resources and Services Administration has delayed until Aug. 7 the date by which certain hospitals participating in the 340B drug pricing program must comply with new guidance regarding the statutory prohibition against obtaining outpatient drugs through a group purchasing organization. The prohibition applies to 340B disproportionate share hospitals, children’s hospitals and free-standing cancer hospitals. Requested by AHA and its 340B hospital members, the delay was announced Friday in a Frequently Asked Question on the HRSA website. AHA Executive Vice President Rick Pollack said the revised compliance date “will allow hospitals time to work with their vendors and wholesalers to address the many process and procedural challenges that arose from the HRSA notice. Hospitals appreciate the flexibility to properly train staff to modify their existing inventory management system and ensure the procedures are working well.”
AHA to host webinar on Health Care Transformation Fellowship   04/08/2013
The AHA will offer a public informational webinar April 23 on its AHA Health Care Transformation Fellowship, a nine-month program that helps senior health care leaders implement new care delivery and payment models, manage risk, develop physician leaders and manage population health. Through in-person learning retreats, webinars, one-on-one coaching and peer-to-peer networking, participants learn from organizations that have executed these models and develop relevant projects that will support their own organizations. To participate in the free webinar, from 2:30-3:30 p.m. Eastern Time, click here to register. Fellowship applications are being accepted through April.
National Healthcare Decisions Day is April 16   04/08/2013
Health care and community organizations, including hospitals, will participate April 16 in the sixth annual National Healthcare Decisions Day. AHA is a partner in the national initiative, which encourages Americans to talk about their future health care decisions and complete an advance directive. For more on the event and free materials about end-of-life planning, visit www.nationalhealthcaredecisionsday.org and AHA’s www.aha.org/putitinwriting.