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News

MRH Employees Donate Gifts to Children in Need

This Christmas, staff of Marlette Regional Hospital donated three boxes of toys to Marlette Toys for Tots for distribution during the holiday season. Long-term employee Janis Maynard has proudly...

Debbie Smielewski Celebrates 45 Years at McKenzie Health System

McKenzie Health System recently celebrated Debbie Smielewski’s 45 year anniversary of dedicated service to the hospital with an employee gathering and refreshments. Debbie began as a dishwasher...

McKenzie Health System Hosts CMU Medical Student

McKenzie Health System is pleased to announce a continued partnership with Central Michigan University’s (CMU) Comprehensive Community Clerkship program, part of the CMU Medical School. CMU...

MHS Community Fitness Classes Session #1

January 2 - February 22 McKenzie Health System is pleased to be able to provide a variety of fitness classes. Aqua Aerobics, Low Impact, Senior Exercise, and Tai Chi. For more information and to...

CMU Medical Student Partners with MRH Provider in Lapeer County

On January 14th, Marlette Regional Hospital will warmly welcome a third-year Central Michigan University (CMU) College of Medicine (CMED) student to their facility and our Thumb Area communities....

McLaren Caro Region implements new emergency department partnership with American Physician Partners

A visit to the emergency room can be one of the most stressful, unpredictable, and potentially frustrating experiences of a person’s life. But a new partnership at McLaren Caro Region, along...

McLaren Caro Region Welcomes New Chief Medical Officer

McLaren Caro Region is pleased to introduce Dr. Norman Chapin as their new Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Chapin will act as a liaison between administrative staff and our physicians. He will be...

McLaren Caro Region Welcomes New Nurse Practitioner

McLaren Caro Region is excited to announce the addition of Heather Fryers, FNP-BC to their team of providers. Heather began seeing patients on Monday, January 7, 2019 as a Family Nurse Practitioner...

Marlette Regional Hospital Sleep Lab Receives Program Accreditation

Marlette Regional Hospital’s (MRH) Sleep Lab in Marlette recently received program accreditation from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM), making it one of 2,600 AASM-accredited sleep...

Marlette Regional Hospital Staff Go Above & Beyond for Patients

Each day, Marlette Regional Hospital marvels at the wonderful care our employees provide to our patients and residents, especially the unexpected, extra things our employees do to provide excellent...

McLaren Bay Region "A Matter of Balance" - 2 sessions offered

Wednesdays, January 16 – March 6, 2019 | 10AM - 12PM Wednesdays, January 16 – March 6, 2019 | 1PM - 3PM Many older adults experience concerns about falling and restrict their activity as...

McLaren Bay Region Four Week Childbirth Series

Wednesday, January 2 - January 23 | 6:30PM - 9PM This class provides information on the process of labor and birth, including breathing, relaxation and other coping measures, hospital birthing...

Rotary Hosts 30th Annual Pancake Supper for Hospice

The Brown City Rotary Club invites you to attend the 30th annual Pancake Supper on Wednesday, January 23rd to benefit United Hospice Service of Marlette Regional Hospital. Sponsored by the Brown City...

Rotary Hosts 30th Annual Pancake Supper for Hospice

The Brown City Rotary Club invites you to attend the 30th annual Pancake Supper on Wednesday, January 23rd to benefit United Hospice Service of Marlette Regional Hospital. Sponsored by the Brown City...

American Cancer Society Freshstart Smoking Cessation Program - Two days, Thursday 1/24/19 and 1/31/19

Facility: Center for Rehabilitation, McLaren Bay Region West Campus, 3190 E. Midland Road, Time: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm Description Facilitated by Anne Hamilton, Respiratory Therapist. The cost is $25 for...

Communities Achieving Excellence and Accountability

SAVE THE DATE What : Tenth Annual Conference The Region's Health and Healthcare Systems: Communities Achieving Excellence and Accountability When : Friday, January 25, 2019. 8:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m....

MHS Healthy Lifestyle Workshop

January 28, 5:30 p.m. Location: McKenzie Health System Dining Room, 120 Delaware Street, Sandusky Guest Speaker: Jamie Foster, A Chance to Change Drug and Alcohol Testing, L.L.C. Topic:...

MHS Change 4 Life Support Group

January 29, 6:30 p.m. Location: Sandusky Presbyterian Church Meeting Room, 104 Lexington Street, Sandusky Guest Speaker: Millie Patterson Topic: “Let Go of The Past, Embrace the Future”...

McLaren Bay Region safeTALK suicide alertness training

McLaren Bay Region will host a free safeTALK suicide alertness training session on Tuesday, January 29 from 8 a.m. - 11 a.m. safeTALK is a half-day alertness training that prepares attendees,...

McLaren Bay Region to host safeTALK suicide alertness training

McLaren Bay Region will host a free safeTALK suicide alertness training session on Tuesday, January 29 from 8 a.m. - 11 a.m. safeTALK is a half-day alertness training that prepares attendees,...

McLaren Bay Region Baby Class for BIG KIDS-Sibling Preparation Class

Wednesday, January 30 | 6PM - 7:30PM This class is designed for children ages 3-8 who are expecting a new baby at home. Attendees will learn about fetal development, safety and the older sibling's...

McLaren Bay Region “Boot Camp for New Dads”

Thursday, January 31 | 6PM - 9PM Boot Camp for New Dads is a community education program for first time fathers. Taught by fathers, Boot Camp enables new dads to step up to the tremendous challenge...

American Cancer Society Freshstart Smoking Cessation Program - Two days, Thursday 1/24/19 and 1/31/19

Facility: Center for Rehabilitation, McLaren Bay Region West Campus, 3190 E. Midland Road, Time: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm Description Facilitated by Anne Hamilton, Respiratory Therapist. The cost is $25 for...

MRH Offers Diabetes Education Refresher Class

The Diabetes Self-Management Training (DSMT) program of Marlette Regional Hospital invites Thumb Area residents living with diabetes to take advantage of an educational opportunity that can assist...


The Hospital Council of East Central Michigan works to maintain relations with state and federal legislators, organizations and others in the region whose activities affect the health services of our community hospitals and encourages their support by providing opportunities to learn about issues that impact members' ability to improve the health of the population. HCECM also works with other advocacy groups to help keep member hospitals informed of all legislative matters affecting their services.

 

Protect Funding for Member Hospitals

Critical Access Hospitals and rural hospitals face many unique challenges that can impact the health of the population. So these hospitals can maintain financial viability and continue to operate and serve the needs of their communities, HCECM member hospitals work with legislators and advocacy organizations to secure state and federal funding that helps overcome these challenges. 

In June 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced that low-volume payment adjustments and the Medicare-dependent Hospital (MDH) program were extended which will help our regional hospitals. Ambulance add-on payments for rural operators were also extended.

The Michigan Legislature also restored funding for the small and rural hospital pool and graduate medical education program, created a new small and rural hospital obstetrics stabilization fund and approved a provider tax-funded disproportionate share hospital pool expansion to address the HICA revenue shortfall.

CRNA Physician Supervision Opt-out

Under current federal law, CRNAs must be supervised by a physician. However, in 2001 the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services provided an opportunity for states to "opt out" or be exempted from the federal supervision requirements for CRNAs. HCECM hospital members have been working with regional legislators to try to get Michigan to opt out of the requirement.

Some of the problems of requiring CRNA supervision can include:

  • Increases cost of healthcare and financial burdens on hospital unnecessarily for many reasons
  • Creates staffing and access issues in rural areas
  • Increases wait time per patient, which is not cost effective
  • Has not been proven to improve care to patient

Supervision of Hospital Therapeutic Services

In 2009, CMS mandated that "a supervising physician be physically present in the department at all times when Medicare beneficiaries receive outpatient therapeutic services." It further complicated matters by stating that this was a clarification from a 2001 ruling.

For Critical Access, small and rural hospitals, this mandate:

  • Creates unnecessary time and financial burdens
  • Increases costs of healthcare
  • Increases risk for unwarranted enforcement actions
  • Increases risk for opportunistic whistleblowers to claim a hospital did not follow this at some point in the past 13 years

CMS made some positive changes; however, more needs to be done to reduce the burdens on CAHs and rural hospitals. According to the American Hospital Association, many CAHs and small rural hospitals will have no choice but to limit their hours of operation or close certain programs due to their inability to meet the requirements of direct supervision.

EHRs and Meaningful Use

HCECM hospital members are at various stages of participating in EHR and Meaningful Use incentive programs. The rules and guidance are complicated, burdensome and require significant resources, especially for Critical Access and rural hospitals. HCECM and its hospital members are working with other advocacy organizations to encourage CMS to clarify requirements and lessen the burdens for participation.

96-hour Physician Certification Requirement for CAHs

According to the American Hospital Association, "CMS has recently indicated that it will begin enforcing a condition of payment for CAHs that requires a physician to certify that a beneficiary may reasonably be expected to be discharged or transferred to a hospital within 96 hours after admission to the CAH. If enforced, CAHs would be forced to eliminate these '96-hour plus' services, and the resulting financial pressure on CAHs would severely affect their ability to operate and care for beneficiaries in rural communities."

HCECM and its hospital members have been working with other advocacy organizations to urge the CMS to remove this requirement as a payment condition. A few examples of how this could impact patients include:

  • A patient with pneumonia who experiences a setback and needs more time to recover could be negatively impacted by transferring him/her to a tertiary center.
  • A woman who gives birth by C-section or is in labor for 24 hours or more before the C-section could easily exceed the 96-hour rule.
  • A patient with pancreatitis, often caused by alcohol abuse, could benefit more by staying close to a support system of community/family.
  • A patient who undergoes bowel surgery often needs more time to recover.
  • A patient who experiences a ruptured appendix resulting in peritonitis will likely need more time to receive treatment and recover.

Transitions in Care

HCECM is currently working with volunteers from numerous hospitals, agencies and organizations to address transportation challenges for regional residents in need of medical care. A major problem for people with medical issues is to have access to affordable and reliable transportation. Many are unable to make appointments, keep appointments or even make it to a facility when immediate medical help is needed.

A key priority of HCECM is to also work with others to foster effective care transitions through a hospital information process that provides a standardized system that supports the transfer of clinical and care planning information to the multidisciplinary providers continuing care of post acute care inpatients after discharge. 


DOJ, HHS Call for Action to Address Abuse of Older Americans

HHS Awards $83.4 Million to Train New Primary Care Providers

RHRC Report: Support for Rural Recruitment and Practice Among U. S. Nurse Practitioner Education Programs

Policy to Allow RHC to Contract with Non-physician Practitioners Under Certain Conditions - Issued May 2, 2014

 CMS Revisions - Issued May 12, 2014


 


AHA Advocacy

 AHA Small & Rural Hospitals Advocacy Paper 2013

NRHA Fiscal Year 2015 Appropriation Request

Rural Policy Research Institute

NRHA Save Rural Hospitals Action Kit

2015 Rural Health Policy Institute Requests

NRHA Legislative and Regulatory Agenda

Protect Rural Patients and Providers

Sequestration Impact on States



315 Mulholland Street
Bay City, Michigan 48708
Office: (989) 891-8810
Fax: (989) 891-8161
           

 



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