MHA Board of Trustees Conducts February Meeting

Posted on February 15, 2018

The MHA Board of Trustees held its first meeting of the 2018 calendar year Feb. 14 and focused much of its attention on the legislative and regulatory arenas, which could significantly impact the health of communities across Michigan.

The board heard from Joan Budden, president and CEO of Grand Rapids-based Priority Health, who outlined some of the strategies the payer is using to advance price transparency and evaluate overall healthcare costs. She described in detail national trends around the issues of consumerism, the impact of indemnity products in the marketplace, and new providers seeking to appeal to consumer desires for convenient care. She also highlighted the growing aspect of vertical integration and identified national disruptors in the healthcare marketplace and the growing phenomenon of national health systems.

Following Budden’s remarks, the board discussed the work done thus far by the MHA Board Task Force on Price Transparency and the need to continue to evaluate what pricing information will be of most value to consumers, including interest in models like the Priority Cost Estimator, which was described as a “nonjudgmental, pre-process” price indicator.

The board also received a brief update from members who attended the Jan. 23 Visioning Session with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) leaders, noting that key hospital issues include:

  • Utilization reductions through reduced clinical variation should lower consumer premiums and improve affordability
  • Improvement of population health requires alignment of physicians, hospitals, health plans and other stakeholders
  • Transformational relationships are required to achieve success in changing the healthcare reality

Board members further indicated the support of BCBSM and MHA leaders for additional efforts regarding a transformational framework to address the yet-undefined future healthcare environment.

The board also heard from American Hospital Association (AHA) Executive Vice President Tom Nickels, who provided an in-depth look at the most recent developments in Washington, DC. These updates covered the congressional budget deal, the 2018 federal elections, and attempts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Nickels also discussed current attempts to dismantle the 340B drug program, which uses pharmaceutical industry dollars to lower drug prices for certain hospitals. Members will continue to receive updates from the AHA and the MHA on 340B advocacy efforts.

The MHA Advocacy team provided the board with updates on the state budget, including the governor’s recent executive budget recommendation that supports healthcare priorities, such as rural and obstetrical services and graduate medical education funding; ongoing efforts to repeal the auto no-fault insurance system; continued Medicaid program challenges; and the 2018 state elections.

The board also approved four Type 3 membership applications submitted by 4th IR, operational efficiency consultants located in Bay City, MI; FocusOne Solutions, LLC, a staffing solutions firm located in Omaha, NE; Lumeris, strategic advice and technology service providers located in Maryland Heights, MO; and Switch, a technology infrastructure corporation located in Grand Rapids, MI.

Featured in Monday Report. Click to view the full edition.The meeting concluded with the kickoff of the 2018 MHA Health PAC campaign, which is chaired by MHA Chair-elect Greg Lane, executive vice president and chief administrative officer, McLaren Health Care, Flint.

Questions about the board meeting should be directed to David Seaman at the MHA.

Tags: MHA board

Posted in: Member News

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