Today’s NewsStand – August 15, 2019

Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the Web.

Iowa News

State responsible for suicide death of ISU student Dane Schussler, jury finds
A Linn County jury Wednesday found the state of Iowa caused the death of Iowa State University student Dane Schussler, who went to the university’s counseling center for mental health issues and died by suicide Nov. 9, 2015. Martin Diaz, the Schusslers’ lawyer, said the family was happy the jury found the state was negligent in providing adequate mental health services to students at the university. They wanted to bring awareness to the issues surrounding mental health, and show that the diseases are treatable and there should be accountability when services are not meeting the needs. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

Vera French opens Crisis Stabilization house for those in need
A new option for those going through a mental health crisis has opened in Davenport. Vera French opened a new Crisis Stabilization home in Davenport in late July, allowing for short-term stays for people to stabilize and reintegrate back into the community. Program Manager Kate DeRooi says the five-bedroom, two-bathroom home provides another option to help people through a crisis. Either the client or others in that person’s community can call the 24-hour hot line to begin the screening process. It is a voluntary process. (Quad-City Times)

Iowa City law enforcement, EMS practice active shooter response at UI campus
It’s all about being prepared for a worst-case scenario and that’s exactly why more than 100 law enforcement and first responders descended on the University of Iowa’s campus today. At least 6 agencies, including Johnson County Emergency Mangement, JOCO Sheriff’s Department, Iowa City Police, and Fire were apart of an active shooter training exercise at the UI’s Recreation and Wellness Center. It all started around 8 a.m. shutting down S. Madison Street in Iowa City until 2 p.m. Volunteers from area nursing programs and hospitals played the role of victims, creating a very realistic scene. (KWWL)

National News

Federal appeals court limits hospitals’ disproportionate-share funding
Hospitals that care for a large share of Medicaid, low-income and uninsured patients stand to receive less funding from the federal government after the D.C. Circuit reconsidered how Medicaid disproportionate-share hospital reimbursement is calculated. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed a lower court and reinstated a 2017 rule establishing that payments by Medicare and private insurers are to be included in calculating a hospital’s DSH limit, ultimately lowering its maximum reimbursement. (Modern Healthcare)

Hospitals call for overhauling Medicare Advantage prior authorization rules
Hospitals and health systems are demanding that the CMS set national rules for how insurers manage prior authorization and payment for pre-approved claims in Medicare Advantage. In response to the Trump administration’s request for information on its Patients over Paperwork initiative to cut Medicare red tape, hospitals complained that prior authorization is a complicated system where payment isn’t guaranteed even if they follow all the steps insurers lay out for them. They want national standards so that clinicians will know what they have to do to get treatments approved regardless of the insurer, and that they will get paid. (Modern Healthcare)

Medicare public option would harm rural hospitals, study finds
As many as 55 percent of rural hospitals – or 1,037 hospitals – would be at a high risk of closure under a Medicare public option, revealed a recent analysis conducted by Navigant Consulting on behalf of the Partnership for America’s Healthcare Future. The analysis uncovered that financial harm to rural hospitals would range from $4.2 billion nationally if only the uninsured and current individual market participants move to the public option to $25.6 billion under the most comprehensive Medicare public option. (RevCycle Intelligence)