CMS Issues New Guidance to State Health Officials to Address Social Determinants of Health

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) has sent a letter encouraging state health officials to find ways to address social determinants of health (SDOH) in order to reduce health disparities, improve beneficiary outcomes and lower overall costs, specifically in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  The U.S. spends more on healthcare than most countries and yet has poorer outcomes than many on key health indicators.  

To address the tension between rising costs and less positive outcomes, CMS has issued new guidance to shift states more fully toward alternative payment models that hold clinicians accountable for both cost and quality.  These value-based alternatives, CMS advises, provide more opportunities for states to address issues around housing, employment, education, and good nutrition, which are non-medical components of well-being that can profoundly influence physical health.  The guidance describes how states can leverage existing flexibilities under federal law to tackle adverse health outcomes influenced by SDOH and to design new programs, services, and benefits to more effectively address these issues.  


AHA Comments on CMS Proposed Changes to Cost Report

The AHA has provided comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) proposed changes to the hospital and hospital healthcare complex cost report.
“The AHA appreciates CMS’ efforts to improve the quality of the data being reported and eliminate the collection of outdated information,” AHA said.  “However, we have substantial concerns that many of the proposed changes increase hospitals’ regulatory burden, without benefit.”
AHA provided detailed comments on the proposed modifications to the cost report, and urged CMS “to do a thorough review and simplify and/or eliminate its requirements to the greatest extent possible.”


Resources on Coping and Managing Distress Related to Mass Violence Events

The National Mass Violence Victimization Resource Center recently released two resources highlighting tips to help individuals cope and survive during a crisis.  The first resource outlines 12 self-help tips for coping in the aftermath of the attack on the U.S. Capitol last week.  The second is a guide to using grounding and mindfulness techniques with victims, survivors, and family members who are affected by mass violence incidents.

Last fall, AHA’s Hospitals Against Violence initiative, in partnership with NMVVRC, developed a collection of resources for hospitals and health systems to support victims and communities impacted by mass violence.  For more information on the AHA-NMVVRC partnership, including available resources on caring for victims of mass violence, click here.


Education Updates

Safety Starts with Me Train-the-Trainer
Tuesday, January 19, 2021 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Virtual Session 

Safety Starts with Me Train-the-Trainer is a model for spreading training from an internal content expert to other staff in an organization.  The training is scripted.  It requires an enthusiastic participant who is willing to make time to train others within the organization.  Many hospitals in Connecticut have trained educators, frontline managers, and senior leaders, including the CEO, to be part of the training contingent.  Train-the-trainer sessions are for hospitals and ambulatory practices. 

The final 90-minute virtual train-the-trainer sessions will review the CHA CHAMP patient safety and error prevention training material.  This material has been revised and updated to ensure it is timely and relevant to the challenges confronting today’s healthcare leaders, staff, and physicians.  Registrants must participate in all three sessions—whether in real-time or via the recordings.

Continuing education credits will be provided to those who participate in the live training.

  • Click here to register for the Tuesday, January 19, 2021 session

This session is only offered to CHA HRO members.


Fair and Just Culture
January 21, 2021 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Virtual Session

This Fair and Just Culture session is a 60-minute coaching session, tailored to HR business and safety department professionals, and will help participants to identify and discuss key elements required for sustaining an effective fair and just culture program as part of organizational high reliability efforts.

Continuing education credits will be provided to those who participate in the live training.

  • Click here to register for the Thursday, January 21, 2021 coaching session from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

This session is only offered to CHA HRO members.


Safety Coaching
Tuesday, January 26, 2021 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Virtual Session 

Safety Coaches are peer mentors, trained to recognize and acknowledge good high reliability behavior and to remind people about opportunities to improve behavior that does not stay true to high reliability concepts.  In a successful program, Safety Coaches are key change agents in building a culture of safety. 

A 90-minute education session for frontline Safety Coaches will be virtually facilitated, focusing on their roles and responsibilities as peer influencers, encouraging their colleagues to adopt safe and reliable practices as daily habits.

Continuing education credits will be provided to those who participate in the live training.

Safety Coaching will be held on the following date:

  • Click here to register for the Tuesday, January 26, 2021 session from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

This session is only offered to CHA HRO members.


Apparent Cause Analysis
Wednesday, January 27, 2021 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Thursday, January 28, 2021 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Virtual Sessions

Apparent Cause Analysis (ACA) methodology is used to evaluate and better understand the causes of precursor events at the microsystem level.  Analyzing events using this tool will help direct the front-line leader to the appropriate improvement activities. This course is for front-line leaders—nursing and physician—and quality managers.  After attending this virtual program, the participant can serve as a local expert and provide coaching on ACAs to others in their setting.

Continuing education credits will be provided for those who participate in the live training.

  • Click here to register for the Wednesday, January 27, 2021 and Thursday, January 28, 2021 sessions from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

These sessions are only offered to CHA HRO members.


21st Century Cures Act Update: Preparing for the CMS Patient Interoperability and Patient Access Final Rule, and the ONC Information Blocking Final Rule
Wednesday, January 20, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Wednesday, January 27, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Virtual Sessions

CHA is pleased to offer a virtual, multi-disciplinary issue-based educational forum to update members on the 21st Century Cures Act.  Join colleagues for the final two sessions in this three-part series designed to provide practical guidance in preparing for regulations that will have a substantial impact on hospital operations when implementation and enforcement begin in the spring of 2021. 

There is no fee to attend, but pre-registration is necessary.


Building Resilience
Thursday, February 18, 2021 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Virtual Session

Back by member request, this interactive session will present information on the elements of resilience, the science of how the human brain works when encountering a threat or reward, and strategies to increase personal resilience. This program is designed to help all healthcare professionals combat burnout that affects both personal and professional development. Click here for more information. 

Fee: $100 per person for CHA members
        $150 per person for non-CHA members

  • Click here to register for Building Resilience