October 13, 2017
Addressing Opioid Crisis Will
Take Teamwork
Hospital leaders know that finding solutions to Maryland's opioid crisis requires partnerships - with community-based behavioral health providers, with law enforcement, with state agencies, and more.
That's why over the past couple of years, to build support for a comprehensive behavioral health strategy, MHA has been convening those who will play a part in addressing the crisis. We've solicited ideas, shared information and best practices, and learned how different organizations can complement each other's work. For example, MHA recently partnered with the state Behavioral Health Administration to host a five-part webinar series to help hospitals understand their role in addressing the crisis.
These efforts are now bearing fruit.
Last week, Maryland's Behavioral Health Administration and Opioid Operational Command Center announced it will provide $1.5 million for a pilot program for five hospitals to expand the work that 10 hospitals are already doing to help those who have overdosed on opioids or are at risk of doing so. The funding, which will be used for enhanced screenings and peer recovery specialists in emergency departments, will go to Meritus Medical Center, Anne Arundel Medical Center, Peninsula Regional Medical Center, St. Agnes Hospital, and Greater Baltimore Medical Center.
The allocation of these funds is a small but significant step toward addressing the opioid crisis. The supported activities at these hospitals align with forthcoming recommendations from MHA's Behavioral Health Task Force for a statewide, comprehensive behavioral health care system. That task force's recommendations will be released closer to the start of the 2018 legislative session.
A resolution to Maryland's opioid crisis will rely on the relationships that MHA has forged over the past several years, and the department's allocation of funds for these pilots represents just the sort of trusted partnership that can change the trajectory of opioid abuse in our state.

HSCRC Considers Draft Policy on Medicare Performance Adjustment
The Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) and CareFirst representatives during this week's HSCRC monthly meeting raised concerns about HSCRC staff's draft Medicare Performance adjustment. There was also significant discussion about emergency room diversion and wait times as part of the discussion on updates to the commission's quality-based payment programs. For details, see this month's edition of Newsbreak.
Health Care Forum to Be Held Next Week
MHA will participate in a health care forum in Baltimore County on October 25 from 6-8 p.m. U.S. Senator Ben Cardin and State Delegate Steve Lafferty are expected to speak at the event, which is designed to provide an update on federal and state health care policies and allow the public time to make comments and ask questions. For more information, contact Gretchen Maneval at 443-219-7856.
Next Webinar in Opioid Crisis Series is October 18
MHA and the Maryland Department of Health will continue their five-part series Hospitals' Role in Addressing the Opioid Crisis next week with the fourth webinar, "Overdose Survivors Outreach Project." Materials from the first three webinars are available on MHA's website. The final webinar is in November. Contact Nicole Stallings with questions. Registration is required for each webinar. Click each title below to register. The remaining webinars and their topics are:
MHA Members Recognized as Leaders to Know
Eight health care leaders from MHA's member hospitals are among 112 Physician Leaders of Hospitals and Health Systems recognized by Becker's Hospital Review. The 2017 list includes:  
  • John Chessare, MD. President and Chief Executive Officer of Greater Baltimore Medical Center. Dr. Chessare became president and CEO of Greater Baltimore Medical Center in June 2010.
  • Norvell V. Coots, MD. President and CEO of Holy Cross Health (Silver Springs, Md.). Dr. Coots was named president and CEO of Holy Cross Health, a member of Livonia, Mich.-based Trinity Health, in 2016.
  • Redonda Miller, MD. President of The Johns Hopkins Hospital (Baltimore). Dr. Miller became the first woman to lead Johns Hopkins Hospital as president in 2016.
  • Kurt Newman, MD. President and Chief Executive Officer of Children's National Health System (Washington, D.C.). Dr. Newman became president and CEO of Children's National Health System in 2011.
  • Jonathan Ringo, MD. President and COO of Sinai Hospital of Baltimore. Dr. Ringo was named president and COO of Sinai Hospital of Baltimore in May.
  • Paul Rothman, MD. CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine (Baltimore). Dr. Rothman became CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine in 2012 and serves as dean of the medical faculty and vice president for medicine at Baltimore-based The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
  • Thomas B. Smyth, MD. President and CEO of University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center (Towson). In May 2016, Dr. Smyth became president and CEO of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center after spending decades in private practice.
  • Mohan Suntha, MD. President and Chief Executive Officer of University of Maryland Medical Center (Baltimore). Before he was appointed president and CEO of University of Maryland Medical Center in September 2016, Dr. Suntha spent four years as president and CEO of Towson-based University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center.
Personal Accountability is Difficult
The title of this short article pretty much sums up what we all know about getting our staff to be accountable.

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.

Hargan Named Acting HHS Secretary
President Trump this week named Eric Hargan as Acting Secretary of Health and Human Services.

October 15-16
MHEI Annual Leadership Conference
The Baltimore Sun, By Michael Dresser, October 6
The Baltimore Sun, By Pamela Wood, October 9
Baltimore Business Journal, By Morgan Eichensehr, October 9
The Baltimore Sun, By Meredith Cohn, October 12
The Baltimore Sun, By John Fritze, October 12
Herald-Mail Media, By Julie E. Greene, October 11