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Julie Kozminski

Senior Policy Analyst

Julie Kozminski is a senior policy analyst at America's Essential Hospitals.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released guidance and example templates for good faith estimates and the surprise billing patient-provider dispute resolution process.

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New guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services reviews the timeline for open negotiations and initiating the federal independent dispute resolution process under the No Surprises Act.

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The new document explains various provisions under part II surprise billing regulations, including that all financial assistance should be reflected in the good faith estimate regardless of the amount or type of discount. The new regulations take effect Jan. 1, 2022.

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A Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services letter to state Medicaid directors outlines new supplemental payment reporting and Medicaid disproportionate share hospital requirements under the Consolidated Appropriations Act.

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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration will ask grant recipients to develop or expand evidence-based services that may include the provision of sterile syringes, safe-sex kits, prevention education, overdose prevention kits, and more. Applications are due Feb. 7, 2022.

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The advisory aims to combat the youth mental health crisis that worsened due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, the surgeon general recommends health care professionals focus on prevention and trauma-informed care principles, routinely screen children for mental health risk factors, and more.

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In its comments to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the association stressed the importance of considering hospital physical infrastructure and financial status in developing research and practice improvement strategies.

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As part of Vice President Kamala Harris' call to reduce maternal mortality and morbidity, a Department of Health and Human Services report highlights the impact of extending postpartum Medicaid coverage. In addition, CMS intends to propose a "Birthing-Friendly" hospital designation.

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America’s Essential Hospitals commented on the second interim final rule implementing the No Surprises Act. The association urged HHS to revise good faith estimate requirements and create an IDR process that does not favor payers over providers.

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CMS released guidance to help states maintain Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program coverage as they return to normal operations when the COVID-19 public health emergency ends. Many strategies in the documents require support from outside organizations that work with beneficiaries.

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The Department of Health and Human Services announced a $1.5 billion investment to help grow and diversify the nation's health care workforce through loan repayment and scholarship programs.

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The Department of Health and Human Services released a fourth interim final rule to implement the No Surprises Act. The agency aims to enhance transparency and provide insight into how prescription drugs contribute to the growth of health care spending and the cost of health coverage.

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The new strategy from the Department of Health and Human Services expands the scope of crisis response beyond opioids to include other substances often involved in overdoses. It focuses on four priority areas: primary prevention, harm reduction, evidence-based treatment, and recovery support.

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The plan — required by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act — focuses on increasing the health workforce in rural and underserved areas and better preparing for the health care needs of the future. HHS will issue a report to Congress on implementation.

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Consumers now can preview health plans and prices on healthcare.gov ahead of open enrollment, which runs Nov. 1, 2020, through Jan. 15, 2021.

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CMS will require states to cover COVID-19 treatment with no cost-sharing for Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program beneficiaries. Further, states in some circumstances must cover treatments for conditions that might seriously complicate the treatment of COVID-19.

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Money from the American Rescue Plan will fund up to 50 awards through the Health Resources and Services Administration's State Loan Repayment Program for state-run programs that support, recruit, and retain primary care clinicians who work in underserved communities.

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A new analysis finds annual clinical labor costs in the emergency department and intensive care unit and among nursing staff increased by $24 billion due to the COVID-19 pandemic, translating to about $17 million in additional expenses for the average 500-bed facility.

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HHS released a Spanish version of QuestionBuilder, an app that helps patients and caregivers prepare for their in-person or telehealth appointments, along with a report on Latino patients' access to care.

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The rule, released by the Department of Health and Human Service and the Department of Treasury, extends open enrollment, adds a new special enrollment period, expands navigator responsibilities, and modifies Section 1332 innovation waivers.

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In this first white paper of a new series, America's Essential Hospitals discusses the chronic underfunding of Medicaid as a form of structural racism and provides recommendations to ensure the program is an effective tool to improve equity.

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In a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, America's Essential Hospitals commented on the first interim final rule implementing the No Surprises Act. The association urged HHS to delay implementation until after the COVID-19 public health emergency, among other requests.

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America's Essential Hospitals sent CMS recommendations for implementing the new Medicaid supplemental payment reporting system under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020. The association noted the importance of accuracy and avoiding duplicate data collection.

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In an Aug. 13 letter to state health officials, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services updates its guidance regarding the resumption of normal state Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program, and Basic Health Program operations when the COVID-19 public health emergency ends.

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Many governors are taking renewed action to combat COVID-19 as the delta variant spreads. Some states have renewed their public health emergency declarations, while others are mandating vaccinations for certain state workers. However, nine states have enacted laws prohibiting vaccine mandates.

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A bulletin from the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services notes the withdrawal of the 2019 public charge rule and addresses states' role in safeguarding applicant and beneficiary information. The public charge rule was vacated and is no longer in effect, retroactive to March 2, 2021.

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HRSA announced $103 million in American Rescue Plan funding over three years to help reduce burnout and promote mental health among the health care workforce.

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CMS announces $15 million for state Medicaid agencies to launch mobile crisis intervention services, as authorized by the American Rescue Plan.

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The rule, released by the departments of Health and Human Services, the Treasury, and Labor and the Office of Personnel Management, bars health care insurers, carriers, and providers from billing patients more than in-network cost sharing amounts in certain circumstances.

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On July 1, the Biden administration released part 1 of the No Surprises Act interim final rule. Passed as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, the rule establishes new patient protections from balanced billing and excessive cost-sharing, known as surprise billing.

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The departments of the Treasury and Health and Human Services proposed extending open enrollment in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, adding a new special enrollment period, expanding navigator responsibilities, and modifying Section 1332 innovation waivers.

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