Connecticut Hospitals to Testify Before the Appropriations Committee

Tomorrow, CHA and hospitals from across the state will provide testimony before the Appropriations Committee on the Governor’s 2016-2017 biennium budget proposal, HB 6824, An Act Concerning The State Budget For The Biennium Ending June Thirtieth 2017, And Making Appropriations Therefor And Other Provisions Related To Revenue

The Governor’s proposed budget would expand the hospital tax to $514.4 million each year, cut Medicaid rates, and eliminate the low-cost hospital pool for FY 2016 and 2017.  It would not distribute enhanced revenue on hospital supplemental payments due for FY 2014 and 2015, and would eliminate payments in the future.  It would also limit the use of tax credits for businesses and hospitals.  

Hospitals are asking for strong policy that supports a sustainable healthcare environment, not more cuts and taxes.  CHA will testify that hospitals have already been cut and taxed so significantly that it is hurting patient care, access, jobs, and our economy, and the proposed budget would add even more financial pressure at a time when hospitals need adequate funding to provide the best care.  The funds hospitals are taxed would have been invested in patient care and staffing, and been used to improve hospital infrastructure and technology.

Also related to the budget, on February 26, CHA testified before the Human Services Committee on HB 6846, An Act Implementing The Governor's Budget Recommendations For Human Services Programs.  CHA highlighted the sections of the bill that would have an impact on hospitals and urged the Committee to reject these provisions.


National Patient Safety Experts to Present at Patient Safety Summit

Keynote speaker David B. Nash, MD, Dean of the Jefferson School of Population Health

Please join us for CHA’s 13th Annual Patient Safety Summit, co-sponsored with Qualidigm.  The 2015 Patient Safety Summit, which will be held at CHA on Tuesday, March 10, 2015, will focus on health outcomes, health distribution within a population, health determinants, and the policies and strategies needed to improve patient safety population health in the transition to value-based care.

David B. Nash, MD, Dean of the Jefferson School of Population Health, will deliver the keynote address, Population Health: The Key to Quality.  Following Dr. Nash’s keynote, a panel of Connecticut healthcare leaders and advocates will respond to the presentation and explore the impact of population health on vulnerable populations in Connecticut.  The panel will include Jewel Mullen, MD, Commissioner, Connecticut Department of Public Health; Pat Rehmer, Commissioner, Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services; Thomas Raskauskas, MD, President and CEO, St. Vincent’s Health Partners; and Grace Damio, Director of Research and Training, Hispanic Health Council.  Mark Schaefer, PhD, Director of Healthcare Innovation, State of Connecticut, will serve as moderator.  Plenary sessions include Care in Context: Early Hospital Readmissions – Connecticut’s Critical Challenge, with M. Natalie Achong, MD, Chair, CSMS Health Equity Committee; Beyond the Medical Chart: Exploring the Role that Empathy Plays in Patient Engagement, with patient safety advocate Lisa Helfand; and Safe and Appropriate Use of Hypnotics in Older Adults: Clinical and Quality Improvement Considerations, with Ilse Wiechers, MD, Department of Veterans Affairs.

The Patient Safety Summit, held each spring at CHA, features nationally renowned experts.  It is a continuation of CHA’s successful statewide initiative to eliminate all-cause preventable harm using high reliability science to create a culture of safety.

View Brochure | Event Registration


CHA Testifies On Numerous Proposals

This week, CHA provided testimony on numerous bills:

  • HB 5528, An Act Concerning Continuing Education For Health Care Providers Who Prescribe Narcotic Drugs, a bill that would increase education for health care providers concerning the prescription of narcotics.  Read the testimony here.
  • SB 110, An Act Concerning A Study On Reports Of Threats And Assaults Against Hospital Employees, a bill that would require the DPH to conduct a study of hospital policies and practices concerning reports of threats and assaults against hospital employees. Read the testimony here.
  • SB 246, An Act Defining And Establishing Standards For The Practice Of Telemedicine, a bill that would establish standards and patient safeguards for the practice of telemedicine.  Read the testimony here.
  • SB 467, An Act Concerning The Facilitation Of Telemedicine, a bill that would establish minimum standards of practice and health insurance coverage for telemedicine.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 6487, An Act Concerning Standards For Telemedicine Services, a bill that would encourage the appropriate use of technology by establishing standards for telemedicine. Read the testimony here.
  • SB 252, An Act Concerning Reports Of Infectious Disease At Hospitals, a bill that would require hospitals to report cases of infectious disease to the Department of Public Health.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 5625, An Act Concerning The Definition Of Surgery, a bill that seeks to establish a new definition of surgery.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 5324, An Act Concerning The Definition Of "Urgent Care Clinic" And Requiring The Provision Of Charity Care, a bill that would create a definition of "urgent care clinic" and establish a duty for urgent care clinics to provide charity care.  Read the testimony here.
  • SB 855, An Act Concerning Reports Of Nurse Staffing Levels, a bill that would require hospitals to report to the Department of Public Health on nurse staffing levels.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 5915, An Act Concerning The Practice Of Classical Homeopathy, a bill that would recognize nationally certified classical homeopaths and allow those persons to practice homeopathy in the state of Connecticut.  Read the testimony here.
  • SB 841, An Act Concerning The Implementation Of A Comprehensive Children’s Mental, Emotional And Behavioral Health Plan, a bill that would establish a Children's Behavioral Health Plan Implementation Advisory Board.  Read the testimony here.
  • SB 933, An Act Concerning The Prescription Drug Monitoring Program, a bill that would make licensing and license renewal for practitioners who distribute, administer, or dispense controlled substances contingent on registration in the electronic prescription drug monitoring program.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 5793, An Act Establishing Safe Haven Day, a bill that would designate April second as Safe Haven Day.  Read the testimony here.
  • HB 5816, An Act Concerning Audits By State Agencies, a bill that seeks to establish clear parameters governing the use of extrapolation in Medicaid provider audits.  Read the testimony here.


Special Elections Held for Seats in Bridgeport and Brookfield

On February 24, three special elections were held to fill the seats of legislators who were elected in November 2014 but did not get sworn into office on January 7, 2015.  The special elections, comprising two House of Representatives seats and one State Senate seat, resulted in no new net gain for either party in either chamber of the General Assembly.  Unofficial totals show the Democrats holding onto their seats in Bridgeport, and Republicans holding the Brookfield-based House seat.

In Bridgeport, Democrat Steven Stafstrom beat Republican Enrique Torres and petitioning candidates Robert Keeley Jr., Hector Diaz, and Robert Halstead for the 129th House District seat vacated by Auden Grogins.  A former Democratic city councilman, Representative-elect Stafstrom is an attorney with the Bridgeport-based law firm Pullman & Comley.

Also in Bridgeport, petitioning candidate and former Democrat Senator Edwin Gomes beat Democrat Richard DeJesus, Republican Quentin Dreher, and third-party candidates Charles Hare and Kenneth Moales Jr. for the 23rd Senate District seat vacated by Andres Ayala.

In Brookfield, Republican Stephen Harding defeated Democrat Howard Lasser for the 107th House District seat vacated by David Scribner.  The 107th District covers Brookfield and parts of Bethel and Danbury.

Representatives-elect Stafstrom and Harding, and Senator-elect Gomes, will be sworn into office as soon as Secretary of State Denise Merrill certifies the results of the elections.  Once certified, the Democrats will have an 87-64 advantage in the House and a 21-14 advantage in the Senate.


Save the Date: CHA Annual Meeting


CHA Annual Meeting Awards - Call for Nominations

We are pleased to announce the call for nominations for the CHA Annual Meeting awards.  The presentation of the awards is an important part of the CHA Annual Meeting and a valuable opportunity to showcase Connecticut hospital and staff achievements.  Award applications/nominations are linked below.

The 2015 John D. Thompson Award for Excellence in the Delivery of Healthcare Through the Use of Data recognizes outstanding achievement in patient care quality initiatives.  It is sponsored by CHA’s education and research affiliate, the Connecticut Healthcare Research and Education Foundation (CHREF).  All CHA acute care and other hospital members are encouraged to apply.  Note: There is a two-year period of ineligibility for previous John D. Thompson Award winners.

The 2015 Connecticut's Hospital Community Service Award is an excellent opportunity for recognition of outstanding achievements in community service.  The award is sponsored jointly by CHA and the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH).  Note: There is a three-year period of ineligibility for previous Community Service Award winners.

CHA’s Healthcare Heroes Awards celebrate the invaluable contributions of healthcare workers, both to their field and to the community at large.  CHA is seeking nominations from both direct patient care and nonclinical areas of CHA member facilities.  Ten healthcare heroes, selected by a panel of judges, will be awarded a $100 cash prize.

All entries must be received by Friday, March 27, 2015.  Winners will be honored at the CHA Annual Meeting on Tuesday, June 30, 2015.

If you have questions, please contact Michele Sharp at (203) 294-7213 or via e-mail at


Education Updates

HRO Leadership Method Training for Ambulatory Practices
Thursday, March 12, 2015
9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Event Registration

This ambulatory session will be held at CHA and all ambulatory participants are welcome to join us.  Leadership sessions teach the science of safety and behaviors and practices of High Reliability organizations.

HRO Creating Sustainability for High Reliability Organizations
Monday, March 16, 2015
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Event Registration

This session is for leaders in the organizations that have trained staff in high reliability behaviors and practices and are looking for techniques to improve the likelihood that high reliability does not become a flavor of the month.

HRO Fair and Just Accountability
Monday, March 16, 2015
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Event Registration

Fair and Just Accountability is for anyone who manages people and the course trains staff how to use the Performance Management algorithm and why Fair and Just Accountability is important to creation of a safety culture.

HRO Rounding to Influence
Monday, March 23, 2015
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Event Registration

Rounding to Influence is for leaders who want to learn how to be more effective up on the units, when they are coaching staff and reinforcing behaviors.

HRO Safety Coach Training
Monday, March 23, 2015
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Event Registration

Safety Coaches are peer mentors who help remind employees about the safety practices and behaviors that your organization has adopted.

HRO Leadership Method Training for Hospitals
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Event Registration

This Leadership session is for new Level 3 hospitals and any new hires in previously trained Level 3 hospitals. Leadership sessions teach the science of safety and behaviors and practices of High Reliability organizations.

Sterile Compounding: A Blueprint for Best Practices (for Hospital Engineers)
Tuesday, March 31, 2015
8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
View Brochure | Event Registration

This training—which is designed for hospital engineers—will include an explanation of current facility, environmental, and personnel metrics requirements for compounding sterile preparations in compliance with USP and the CETA Guidelines. A description of how primary and secondary engineering controls contribute to airflow velocity, direction, and ultimately ISO classification will also be provided.

Registration for this session includes access to CriticalPoint’s eLearning course Engineering Controls for Sterile Compounding. These two lessons and post tests must be completed by all participants prior to the scheduled training.  *Login information will be e-mailed to all registrants.

This live-training session will be submitted for continuing education credits.

CHA’s Corporate Compliance Conference
Thursday, April 2, 2015
9:00 a.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Event Registration

Join us for CHA’s Corporate Compliance Conference, which will feature the keynote presentation “You’re Not Paranoid, They Really Are After You: How To Survive The Inevitable Government Investigation” by Jim Kopf, President of Healthcare Oversight and Compliance.  The full-day conference will include additional presentations on high-stakes communication, key compliance issues in physician practices, and more.  Full program details will be available in the coming weeks.