EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES: San Diego County is currently in the process of developing a plan for comprehensive evaluation of the base station hospital system (BSHS) and trauma center catchment area designation (TCCAD). This comprehensive review and evaluation began in January 2023 and is scheduled to be completed by Dec. 31, 2023. The county has hired a consultant, Public Consulting Group, which will collaborate with the county of San Diego, BSHS and TCCAD stakeholders, and the public to ensure all voices are heard as the county works on defining the future of the emergency medical services (EMS) system. More details and key tentative timelines are available on the county’s EMS web page.
KAUFMAN HALL REPORT: Last week, the California Hospital Association held a statewide media call to discuss the troubling findings in the latest Kaufman Hall report and reiterate the need for immediate funding from the state budget for struggling hospitals. Here are some key numbers from the report:
- 20% — The percentage of California hospitals that are at risk of closure.
- 52% — The percentage of California’s roughly 400 hospitals — more than 200 throughout the state — that are losing money every day to care for patients.
- $23.4 billion — How much more it cost in 2022 to provide hospital care in California compared to pre-pandemic levels.
- $8.5 billion — The amount that California hospitals lost in 2022. This is on top of the $12 billion in losses (even after federal relief) they sustained during the pandemic.
SUPPLIER DIVERSITY REPORTS: The Department of Health Care Access and Information (HCAI) has made changes to its Hospital Supplier Diversity Report, which hospitals are required to submit annually on their minority, women, LGBT, and disabled veteran business enterprise procurement efforts. Changes include:
- For reporting on certification, HCAI added a statement that submitters must complete certifying the veracity of the data submitted.
- A new reporting section titled “Hospital System/Regional Network Profile.” Hospitals can manage information associated with a Hospital System/Regional Network name. This new section will allow hospitals to update the names of hospitals associated to a system or regional network.
In addition, it is important to note that HCAI promulgated regulations that granted the authority to impose civil penalties on hospitals that fail to submit a report by the due date or request for extensions after the due date. Reports are required to be submitted annually to HCAI via its online portal by July 1, however, because it falls on a weekend, this year’s due date is July 3.
DEMENTIA CARE AWARE SCREENING TOOL: The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) recently announced a new dementia screening tool for primary care providers in California. The cognitive health assessment is available to help identify cognitive decline in patients ages 65 and older and determine the next steps. Dementia Care Aware, a statewide initiative led by DHCS, provides training on this new assessment and support through a warmline to help primary care providers successfully screen for dementia in older adults.
HCAI PROGRAM ELIGIBILITY: The Department of Health Care Access and Information (HCAI) has developed an online eligibility tool for students, health care professionals, and organizations to quickly see what HCAI programs they may be eligible to apply for.