November 10, 2019
Disaster Preparedness
You may have watched in recent weeks as California residents fled their homes while flames from wildfires inched closer and hospitals faced the daunting task of swiftly evacuating all their patients.

Even as their own families and houses were threatened by the blaze, California hospital employees put the safety and security of their patients first. They had to move even the most critically ill to safer locations. Thankfully, they were ready from years of drills and tragically real experience with the increasing incidence of wildfires in the state.

Maryland fortunately escapes most headline-grabbing disasters, yet our hospitals absolutely must train for many scenarios. These efforts were bolstered post-9/11 by the Hospital Preparedness Program. Coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, it aims to improve the capacity of the nation’s health care system to plan for and respond to large-scale emergencies and disasters.

As we begin a new Hospital Preparedness Program grant cycle, Maryland is focused on our communities. Working through health care coalitions, we’re helping them to prepare for a disaster that would result in an influx of pediatric patients—outside the day-to-day capabilities of most of our organizations.

In the subsequent years of the program, we’ll concentrate on burn patients, infectious disease, radiological emergencies, and chemical incidents.

We hope you never need to put into practice what we did in a drill, but it is among the most important work you do. Your careful planning and preparation ensure Marylanders will be cared for and supported through even the most inconceivable emergencies.
Bob Atlas
President & CEO
2019 Maryland Population Health Summit 
MHA and the Maryland Department of Health hosted a Population Health Summit Wednesday at MHA. Hospital members and local health officers from around the state discussed diabetes prevention and management as a Maryland priority. The objectives were to consider strategies related to the proposed Diabetes Action Plan and identify ways to strengthen existing relationships and establish new ones.

Attendees heard from deans from the University System of Maryland, representatives from the Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) and Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC), along with health officers and hospital members. Finally, attendees participated in a brainstorming session with counterparts in local regions. MHA will submit comments on the plan by COB November 11. For more information, contact Traci La Valle .
Building a Hospital-Based Human Trafficking Identification and Response Program Webinar
The American Hospital Association will host a free webinar November 12 in partnership with HEAL Trafficking and Jones Day . The webinar will explore the development of a hospital-based human trafficking program in a Chicago hospital. Experts will also share key components to include when developing a program and tips for building staff resilience. To register, click here .
Md. House Judiciary Committee Hears Briefing on Medical Liability Climate
On Thursday, the House Judiciary Committee held a series of legislative briefings at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay in Cambridge, Md. MHA members participated in the briefing on Maryland’s medical liability climate. Dr. Jonathan Ringo, President of Sinai Hospital, Kevin Carnell, COO/CLO of RCM&D, Larry Smith, Vice President of Corporate Risk Management Services for MedStar Health, and Dan Shealer, Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Johns Hopkins Health System, presented to the committee on behalf of the hospital field and emphasized the need to rescue Maryland’s medical liability climate.
Human Trafficking Forum: Guidelines for Health Care Providers
Your MHA, in partnership with the University of Maryland SAFE Center for Human Trafficking Survivors (SAFE Center), will host a forum December 9 to review the state’s updated human trafficking guidelines for health care providers. Over the summer, MHA, the SAFE Center and members of the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force’s medical subcommittee convened a group of experts from member hospitals to update the existing guidelines. MHA is requesting voluntary commitment from every hospital to adopt the guidelines. Implementation leads from every hospital are invited to attend the forum. For more information contact Jane Krienke .
Grandfathering for Community Health Workers Certification
According to the Maryland Department of Health, more than 100 existing Community Health Workers (CHWs) have already taken advantage of the voluntary, grandfathering certification. Applications will remain open until March 31. We encourage your CHWs to consider using this process for certification. The certification is free, and additional details can be found here . The CHW advisory committee also is seeking additional members. For questions or assistance with the certification process, contact the CHW Certification team at 410-767-5971 or email .
Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) Network Adequacy Work Group Has Second Meeting
The MIA Network Adequacy Work Group met in Baltimore November 5 for the second time. The work group performed a section-by-section review of Maryland’s network adequacy regulations at COMAR 31.10.44, focusing on potential standardization and increased transparency into private insurance carriers’ methodologies, including where carriers can provide additional details on innovations used to supplement network adequacy requirements. MHA will continue providing feedback to this group in support of greater public dissemination of actions that carriers are taking to meet network adequacy requirements. For additional details, contact Diana Hsu .
National Group Buys Program Offers Savings for MHA Members
Maryland Hospital Association (MHA) members are eligible for Vizient’s National Group Buys through MHA Prime. The program offers opportunities for members to realize substantial savings and enhanced contract value on select products and services. To date, Vizient’s capital equipment group buys have saved members more than $421 million. Group buys are available in 45 major categories, including biomedical engineering, imaging, business office, cardiology, laboratory, central supply, emergency room, medical records, and surgery. Here is a list of group buys on offer through December. For more information contact your MHA Prime Client Executives: Joy Money at 240-856-3303 or Diane Bruno at 410-790-8031.
Want to receive your Toward Better Health
newsletter via text message?
Click here to sign up.
Maryland Hospital Association | www.mhaonline.org