June 2, 2017
Great Teams Need Support
Just over a year ago, Maryland became the first state in the country to achieve 100 percent hospital participation in the national Equity of Care pledge to reduce disparities in the health of minority populations. Since then, a few things have become clear: the work is not easy (but what good work is?); it will take a long time to create meaningful change; and there will be inspiring leaps forward and disappointing setbacks during the journey.
 
But the work is worth the challenge, because reducing disparities is the right thing to do for the people and communities you serve. This means that the women and men who have been tasked with this monumental challenge need help - from every level at your organization.
 
Over the past year, MHA has held several meetings with your front-line staff charged with implementing Equity of Care (the next will be held this fall). At this week's gathering, hospital representatives made clear that they need several things to succeed: a clear message that your hospital views Equity of Care as a priority, vocal support from the highest levels of the organization, enhanced training and education, data analysis tools, and more.
 
At a time when hospitals have many day-to-day priorities, each competing for scarce resources, it might be easy to let a long-term vision be sidelined by immediacy. So it's important to remember that Equity of Care's goal of zero discrepancies in health outcomes for diverse populations is not quarterly or annual, but will take years or even decades to achieve.
 
Here's another thing that's been made clear from the meetings we held over the past year: the dedication of the staff who have agreed to this undertaking is unwavering, and their desire to see this through is relentless. That's a tremendous asset and a strong starting point for hospitals just now beginning to think about how to move zero health disparities from an ideal to an achievement. I'm personally humbled by their determination and MHA, along with the Maryland Healthcare Education Institute, will continue doing our part to nurture their commitment and their good work.
 
How can you help? By asking your health disparities person, or team, that very question. Maybe it's an email, or a call, or a hallway chat. But let them know you have their back, and that the support for their work reaches to the top of the organization. Because to move the needle will take the same commitment from all hospital staff, from C-suite executives to frontline registrars, as it has now from Equity of Care's champions.
 
The groundwork has been laid, your teams are in place, and the transformation is slowly getting underway. Your support can ensure that this important change, while slow, will be steady and deliberate.

MHA's Annual Membership Meeting is Fast Approaching
Hospital CEOs and other leaders will gather at the Four Seasons in Baltimore on the evening of June 12 and the morning of June 13 to discuss the latest issues in health care and politics and how their intersection will affect the future of Maryland's hospitals. Our reception Monday evening will offer time to connect with one another, and we'll recognize some special award winners in our field. On Tuesday, our program runs through lunch and features several prominent speakers:    
  • The New York Times columnist and PBS and NPR political analyst David Brooks, who will engage in a candid discussion about the Trump administration, its impact on the health care landscape, and how the administration might evolve after a tumultuous beginning
  • American Hospital Association President & CEO Rick Pollack, who will share his views on the national health care landscape and how the association is working to protect hospitals' and patients' interests during this historic transformation
  • NASA astronaut and physician Dr. David Wolf, who will offer his thoughts on leadership, motivation and innovation, and how to apply these values in every setting - whether it's hundreds of miles above the Earth or in a hospital emergency department
 
Click here to view the annual meeting brochure and click here to register for the meeting.
 
Contact: Kathy Gotwalt
Scarce Medical Resources Meeting to be Held at MHA
Hospital Chief Medical Officers and emergency preparedness leads are invited to a June 14 statewide meeting at MHA's offices in Elkridge to discuss the state plan for the Allocation of Scarce Medical Resources. The purpose of the meeting is to present an overview of the statewide decision framework for allocating scarce, lifesaving resources in a public health emergency. During the meeting, hospital representatives will learn about the framework so that they can, in turn, present it to key stakeholders at their organizations and offer hospital feedback to the team before submission to the Department of Health & Mental Hygiene for state review. The June 14 meeting is from 2-4 p.m. and every hospital in Maryland is encouraged to send no more than two representatives as space is limited. Please RSVP here. For questions about this meeting, contact Meghan Allen at mallen@mhaonline.org or 410-379-6200.
MHA Executive Committee Minutes Available
The minutes from the May MHA Executive Committee meeting are available on the Governance page on our website. Members must be logged in to download the minutes.
Victim Advocate Training Available from MCASA
The Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault's (MCASA) is offering Comprehensive 32-Hour Victim Advocate Training June 26 to June 29 in Baltimore. The training will take place each day from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Salvation Army Maryland & West Virginia Divisional Headquarters, 814 Light St. This four-day training is designed for advocates who work directly with sexual assault survivors. The training covers introductory and advanced topics to provide a foundation for best practices for advocates in the field of sexual assault services. There is no cost, but member rape crisis centers and staff receive priority registration. Click here to register. For more information, contact info@mcasa.org or visit the MCASA website.
University of Maryland to Hold Primary Care Forum
Maryland's hospitals are invited to attend a Primary Care Forum at the University of Maryland School of Medicine as part of its Maryland Learning Collaborative. Dr. Howard Haft, state Deputy Secretary of Public Health Services, will present on Maryland's Primary Care Model. The model is separate from the all-payer demonstration but aligns with its incentives and successes and seeks to build on them. This will be accomplished by transforming primary care delivery through technical assistance and additional funding streams to support care management, care coordination, and connections to behavioral health and social services. The primary care forum is Wednesday, June 7 from 8-10 a.m. at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. For more information, contact Erinn Smith.
Armstrong Institute Offers Program to Improve Surgical Care
The Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, in collaboration with the American College of Surgeons, is introducing a quality improvement initiative to improve surgical care and recovery. The program is funded and guided by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The Safety Program for Improving Surgical Care and Recovery is designed to support hospitals as they implement perioperative evidence-based pathways to improve clinical outcomes, reduce lengths of stay and improve patient experience. The program is free. Interested hospitals may enroll by visiting https://qi.facs.org/iscr. Two webinars for interested participants are scheduled for June 5 at 10 a.m. ( register) and June 8 at 3 p.m. ( register). For more information, contact smcswine@facs.org.
Children's National CEO Authors Memoir
Dr. Kurt Newman, CEO and President of Children's National Health System, has authored Healing Children, a memoir featuring stories from his more than 30 years as a pediatric surgeon and his work leading the hospital system. The book, to be released June 13, focuses on how patients, families and colleagues have shaped the way Dr. Newman thinks about care and medicine and highlights the importance of pediatric medicine. In one section, Dr. Newman provides seven tips to help parents get the best care for their children and reveals the critical questions they need to ask their child's doctors. He hopes the book will spark a national conversation on the needs of children. Dr. Newman will donate his proceeds from the book to the Pediatric Health Opportunity Fund, a charity that supports research and innovation in pediatric medicine.
Building a Meaningful (and Inexpensive) Physician Leadership Program
 
Physician leadership programs are often expensive to and somewhat limited in desired resources (too much expertise often hikes the cost past the mark of being practical).

Looking for a Cutting Edge Provider for Blood and Associated Services?
 
For more than 60 years, Blood Bank of Delmarva (BBD) has provided blood and blood components to hospitals throughout the Delmarva region, helping avoid blood shortages and saving thousands of lives with assistance from more than 150,000 current donors.

Hospital Compare Overall Star Ratings Will Not Be Updated in July
 
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will not update the overall hospital quality star ratings on Hospital Compare in July as scheduled due to data issues with three of the measures included in the safety group score, according to a QualityNet notice earlier this week.

THE WEEK AHEAD
Monday, June 5
Carmela Coyle and Mike Robbins present to the Delaware Hospital Association Board

Tuesday, June 6
MHA Council on Clinical and Quality Issues meeting
TOP NEWS FROM THE WEEK
The Baltimore Sun, By Michael Dresser, May 26
 
The Frederick News-Post, By Kate Masters, May 27
 
Baltimore Business Journal, By Jonathan Munshaw, May 30
 
The Daily Record, By Tim Curtis, May 30
 
The Daily Record, By Tim Curtis, May 31
 
The Washington Post, By Lenny Bernstein, May 31
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