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Michelle Rosenfeld

Manager of Communications

Michelle Rosenfeld is manager of communications at America's Essential Hospitals.

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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FDA and CDC recommend Moderna and Janssen booster vaccines, along with heterologous booster doses; the Biden administration releases a plan to vaccinate children.

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For the second time during the COVID-19 public health emergency, New Mexico enacted crisis standards of care to address critical workforce shortages. The state is experiencing a drastic shortage of health care workers as it battles provider burnout and higher wages offered in other states.

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Democrats aim to reach a deal this week on a "human infrastructure" reconciliation framework, but topline spending numbers, social policy priorities, and other details remain undecided. Once the framework is set, the House will vote on the Senate-passed bipartisan physical infrastructure bill.

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America's Essential Hospitals submitted comments on the Department of Homeland Security advanced notice of proposed rulemaking on the public charge ground of inadmissibility. Following feedback, the agency plans to engage in the rulemaking process to issue an updated public charge regulation.

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America's Essential Hospitals urged CMS to finalize withdrawal of the Trump administration's Most Favored Nation Model, citing procedural deficiencies, ongoing legal challenges, and significant reduction in provider payment rates.

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A new Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation white paper outlines a strategy to advance health system transformation. The goal is to achieve equitable outcomes by driving accountable care, advancing health equity, supporting innovation, addressing affordability, and creating partnerships.

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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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In a letter to congressional leaders, America's Essential Hospitals advocates for strengthening the health care workforce in the wake of COVID-19, including through more funding in public health emergencies, prioritized visas for foreign clinicians, and increased graduate medical education slots.

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To support the sustainability of the health care safety net, policymakers should include essential hospital priorities in the final reconciliation legislative package.

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Essential hospitals continue to experience increased costs and fewer resources, including staffing, due to the pandemic. We call on Congress to address various priorities to ensure our members remain able to carry out their mission to serve people who face social and financial barriers to care.

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The Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee endorses booster shots of the Moderna and Janssen COVID-19 vaccines. Meanwhile, FDA delays authorization of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in adolescents ages 12 to 17 after reports of cardiac side effects.

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Reports indicate Democrats are likely to land on "human infrastructure" legislation costing $2.3 trillion or less — far below the $3.5 trillion package originally passed in committee. Absent a top-line spending agreement, lawmakers cannot determine the policies to include in a final bill.

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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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Alabama extends its state of emergency, enabling hospitals to relax regulations to expand capacity and allowing out-of-state clinicians to practice in Alabama. A new West Virginia initiative provides hospitals financial and staffing support to avoid the need for care rationing.

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Effective Oct. 18, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra renewed the public health emergency (PHE) determination related to the continued effects of COVID-19. The PHE determination has been in place since Jan. 31, 2020.

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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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Colorado expanded its essential health benefit benchmark plan to enhance coverage for those seeking gender-affirming care, effective January 2023. This expansion is the first of its kind to be approved by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

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The Senate voted Oct. 7 to temporarily increase the debt ceiling by $480 billion; the government likely will remain below the new ceiling through year's end.

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After passing a short-term measure to fund the government through Dec. 3, Congress shifts focus to the federal debt ceiling. A Republican filibuster in the Senate prevented passage of legislation to extend the debt limit; lawmakers must resolve the issue by Oct. 18 to avoid default.

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HHS guidance clarifies how HIPAA applies to COVID-19 vaccination status requests; CDC urges pregnant people to get vaccinated amid a surge in hospitalizations.

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The departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Treasury, and Labor and the Office of Personnel Management issued Part II of the No Surprises Act interim final rule with comment period.

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Providers can simultaneously apply for Phase 4 of the Provider Relief Fund and American Rescue Plan rural payments; applications close Oct. 26. The Health Resources and Services Administration will host a series of informational webinars about the funding application portal.

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The Senate remains in a stalemate over a continuing resolution to fund the federal government through Dec. 3, leaving congressional leaders little time to avoid an Oct. 1 shutdown. House debate begins on a physical infrastructure bill and work continues on "human infrastructure" legislation.

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FDA on Sept. 22 authorized a third booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for select groups. A CDC panel subsequently recommended the booster shots, and CMS announced coverage for all Medicare beneficiaries and nearly all Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program beneficiaries.

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Due to increasing COVID-19 hospitalizations, Alaska and Idaho this month enacted statewide crisis standards of care. These standards are used when health care systems are unable to operate normally due to an extreme public health event.

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In a Sept. 20 letter, America's Essential Hospitals welcomes the announcement of additional COVID-19 relief funding but notes the methodology falls short of adequate support for safety net providers. The association urges HHS to issue another targeted safety net distribution, among other requests.

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An FDA advisory committee recommends a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine booster for a limited population; CDC announces $2.1 billion dedicated to infection control and prevention.

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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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aca, hhs

The calendar year 2022 Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule includes provisions on Medicare payment for telehealth services, the Quality Payment Program, and more. The association also responded to a request for information on improving health equity through data collection.

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States facing a rapid rise in COVID-19 cases are making efforts to support their increasingly burdened health care workforce. Meanwhile, the Federal Emergency Management Agency requested teams to support civilian health care workers treating COVID-19 patients in local state hospitals.

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