October 17, 2014
Volume 57, Issue 42




Wallace to Serve as 2015 WHA Chair-Elect

Pandl will chair Association in 2015


Mike Wallace, MHA, FACHE, president/CEO of Fort HealthCare, has been selected by the Wisconsin Hospital Association Nominating Committee to serve as WHA chair-elect in 2015 and chair in 2016. A member of the WHA Board since 2011, Wallace also chairs the WHA Council on Public Policy and is currently a member of the WHA Executive Committee, Network Adequacy Council and Wisconsin Hospitals Issue Advocacy Council. He was also a member of the WHA Medicaid Advisory Group in 2010.

Prior to joining Fort HealthCare in 2006, Wallace served at Trinity Regional Health System, located in Rock Island, Illinois and Bettendorf, Iowa. Previously, he was the chief executive officer at Lucas County Hospital in Chariton, Iowa. He also held similar positions while employed with HealthSouth Corporation, serving as chief executive officer of two hospitals in Phoenix, Arizona.


Wallace is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, where he received a master of health administration degree. He received his bachelor’s degree from DePauw University, Greencastle, Indiana. Wallace has achieved Fellow status with the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) and is Board certified in health care management. He is a two-time winner of the ACHE Regents Award-Early Career Healthcare Executive and is a past winner of the Iowa Hospital Association Young Executive Achievement Award.


Pandl to chair Association in 2015

Therese Pandl, president/CEO of the Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) Eastern Wisconsin Division, will chair the Association in 2015.


Prior to joining HSHS, Pandl served as executive vice president and COO at Columbia St. Mary’s in Milwaukee. During her tenure with Columbia St. Mary’s, she served in a variety of roles including lead executive for St. Mary’s Hospital Ozaukee, vice president of operations, vice president of inpatient services and nurse executive; as well as director and staff positions.


A member of the WHA Board since 2012, Pandl currently co-chairs the WHA Enrollment Action Council, the Wisconsin Hospitals Issue Advocacy Council and the WHA Executive Committee. She has also served as a member of WHA’s Medicaid Reengineering Group and Council on Public Policy.


Pandl earned both her bachelor’s degree in nursing and her MBA at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a master’s in nursing from the University of Washington, Seattle. She was a Commonwealth Fund Nurse Executive Fellow and is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.


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Ebola Resources Available on WHA Website


The recent transmission of Ebola to health care workers underscores the importance of the response work that Wisconsin hospitals are engaged in now to address Ebola. Hospitals across Wisconsin are closely following the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and the Wisconsin Department of Health Services as it pertains to Ebola preparedness.


To assist member hospitals and health systems, WHA has developed a resource page for materials and guidance (www.wha.org/ebola.aspx) and a separate page that lists upcoming webinars (www.wha.org/ebola-webcasts.aspx). If you have materials to share, forward to Mary Kay Grasmick, mgrasmick@wha.org. 


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Richards Receives WHA 2014 Distinguished Service Award


Terri Richards, corporate director of strategic initiatives, Ministry Health Care, received the WHA 2014 Distinguished Service Award for her service to the health care industry, community and the Association. WHA President Steve Brenton presented the award at a special luncheon held in Stevens Point October 14.


“Terri’s distinguished career as a health care leader, combined with her notable contributions to the Marshfield community and remarkable leadership on behalf of WHA absolutely personify what the WHA Distinguished Service Award is about,” said WHA President Steve Brenton.


Richards was recognized by her colleagues for her leadership and guidance in preparing the health system for the future, leading key initiatives that focused on raising the health status of residents of central and northern Wisconsin. Richards has been involved in state and national advocacy efforts as a member of the WHA Board of Directors and she has served on many WHA committees. She was WHA Board chair in 2001 and was a delegate member of the American Hospital Association.


“Terri is always upbeat, positive and optimistic, which is contagious, regardless of the difficulty of the issues she and our organization may be facing,” said Nick Desien, president/CEO, Ministry Health Care.  


Top of page (10/17/14)



Political Action Fundraising Campaign Reaches 88% Mark

Just over $30,000 needed to reach record goal


The 2014 Wisconsin Hospitals Conduit and State PAC Fundraising Campaign has raised more than $233,000 from 313 participants since the campaign launch in May. In the last two weeks, the Campaign has taken in $13,000 more in contributions from 20 more contributors. 


With just over two weeks until the November 4 election, contribution and disbursement activity will continue at a rapid pace given the tight high-profile races at the top of ticket and around the state.


Thank you to all 313 individuals listed below, including the 63 members of the Platinum Club! The next publication of the contributor list will be in the October 31 edition of The Valued Voice.


For more information, contact Jodi Bloch at 608-217-9508 or Jenny Boese at 608-274-1820.  


Contributors ranging from $1 to $499
Aittama, Craig Ministry Saint Michael's Hospital
Alstad, Nancy Fort HealthCare
Anderson, Phil Sacred Heart Hospital
Anich, Matthew Memorial Medical Center - Ashland
Appleby, Jane Aurora Health Care
Arnett, James Meriter-UnityPoint Health
Bagnall, Andrew St. Nicholas Hospital
Bair, Barbara St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Ballentine, Anne Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Bayer, Tom St. Vincent Hospital
Becker, Kathleen Aurora Health Care
Brenholt, Craig St. Joseph's Hospital
Brenny, Terrence Stoughton Hospital Association
Buser, Kenneth Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Campau, Patricia Columbia St. Mary's, Inc.
Capelli, A.J. Aurora Health Care
Cardinal, Lori Agnesian HealthCare
Ceelen, John Ministry Health Care
Censky, Bill Holy Family Memorial
Clark, Julie St. Joseph's Hospital
Clark, Renee Fort HealthCare
Cliffe Kucharski, Elizabeth Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Collins, Sherry Wisconsin Hospital Association
Coopman, Dianne St. Mary's Janesville Hospital
Cormier, Laura Bellin Hospital
Courtney, Chip Aspirus Medford Hospital & Clinics, Inc.
Dalebroux, Steve St. Mary's Hospital
Danner, Forrest Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Donlon, Marcia Holy Family Memorial
Duda, Carrie Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Dux, Larry Froedtert & MCW Community Memorial Hospital campus
Dwyer, Maxine St. Mary's Hospital
Erickson, Susan Meriter-UnityPoint Health
Ewald, Sandra Aurora Health Care
Ferrigno, Sandra St. Mary's Hospital
Fielding, Laura Holy Family Memorial
Freitag, Vanessa Ministry Our Lady of Victory Hospital
Furlong, Marian Hudson Hospital & Clinics
Gormican, John J. Agnesian HealthCare
Graul, Mark Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Groskreutz, Kevin St. Joseph's Hospital
Gulan, Maria Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Gullicksrud, Lynn Sacred Heart Hospital
Gustafson, Andy SSM Health Care-Wisconsin
Hafeman, Paula St. Vincent Hospital
Halida, Cheryl St. Joseph's Hospital
Hamilton, Mark
Harrington, Kathleen Mayo Health System - Eau Claire
Hattem, Marita Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Heaney, Dwight Fort HealthCare
Helgeson, Jason HSHS-Eastern Wisconsin Division
Henricks, William Rogers Memorial Hospital
Hieb, Laura Bellin Hospital
Hill, Juliet Sacred Heart Hospital
Hockin, Jennifer Aspirus, Inc.
Hofer, John Bay Area Medical Center
Holub, Gregory Ministry Door County Medical Center
Huber, Mark Aurora Health Care
Hueller, Julie Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Jelle, Laura St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Jensen, Russell St. Mary's Hospital
Jones, Mary Meriter-UnityPoint Health
Karow, Deborah Ministry Health Care's Howard Young Medical Center
Kaufmann, Marilyn Holy Family Memorial
Kelsey Foley, Kathy Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Kempen, Jacob Aspirus Wausau Hospital
King, Steve St. Mary's Hospital
Kingston, Mary Beth Aurora Health Care
Kinney, Aric Aurora Medical Center Summit
Klay, Chris St. Joseph's Hospital
Klay, Lois St. Joseph's Hospital
Koch, Mark Mayo Clinic Health System
Koebke, Troy Bellin Hospital
Kuehni-Flanagan, Tracy St. Joseph's Hospital
LaBarge, Margie Ministry Health Care
Lakey, Sandy Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Lambrecht, Randy Aurora Health Care
Lange, George Westgate Medical Group, CSMCP
Larson, William St. Joseph's Hospital
Leonard, Mary Kay St. Mary's Hospital
Luehring, Sally St. Vincent Hospital
Lynch, Sue Mayo Health System - Franciscan Healthcare
Majewski, Joe Aurora Health Care-South Region
Marquardt, Amy Hospital Sisters Health System
Mason, Paul Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Maurer, Mary Holy Family Memorial
Mays, Laura Stoughton Hospital Association
McMeans, Scott Holy Family Memorial
Meicher, John St. Mary's Hospital
Mercer, Carla Reedsburg Area Medical Center
Mohr, Carol Sacred Heart Hospital
Moon-Mogush, Cindy Aurora Health Care
Neikirk, Jon Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin
Nevers, Rick Aspirus, Inc.
Newberry-Ferguson, Linda ProHealth Care - Rehabilitation Hospital of WI
Nickerson, Brian Aurora Health Care
Nicklaus, Todd Aspirus, Inc.
O'Brien, Laura
Ott, Virginia St. Joseph's Hospital
Oungst, Laurie Ministry Health Care's Howard Young Medical Center
Palecek, Steve St. Joseph's Hospital
Pavelec-Marti, Cheryl Ministry Saint Michael's Hospital
Peck, Lori Aspirus Medford Hospital & Clinics, Inc.
Peiffer, Susan Sacred Heart Hospital
Pempek, Kalynn Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Penczykowski, James St. Mary's Hospital
Penovich, Carrie Aurora Medical Center in Two Rivers
Prunty, Brian Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Revnew, Dorothy ProHealth Care - Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital
Riddle, Roberta Rusk County Memorial Hospital
Risley-Gray, Ruth Aspirus, Inc.
Ross, Daniel Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Roundy, Ann Columbus Community Hospital
Schaetzl, Ron St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Schneider, David Langlade Hospital - An Aspirus Partner
Schubring, Randy Mayo Health System - Eau Claire
Schweitzer, Susan Columbus Community Hospital
Sciuti, Jennifer Aurora Health Care
Selle, Ginger St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Shear, Jim  
Sheehan, Heather Hayward Area Memorial Hospital and Nursing Home
Slomczewski, Constance Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Smith, Melanie Aurora Health Care-South Region
Sommers, Craig St. Mary's Hospital
Sparacino, Gloria Aurora West Allis Medical Center
Steines, Sara Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Stelzer, Jason St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Stephens, Brian Ministry Door County Medical Center
Stranberg, Kevin Memorial Medical Center - Ashland
Strasser, Kathy Aspirus, Inc.
Sullivan, Anne Memorial Medical Center - Ashland
Tapper, Joy Milwaukee Health Care Partnership
Teigen, Seth St. Mary's Hospital
Theiler, Brian Gundersen Tri-County Hospital and Clinics
Turtenwald, Robyn Froedtert & MCW Community Memorial Hospital campus
Van Meeteren, Bob Reedsburg Area Medical Center
Vergos, Katherine Ripon Medical Center
Voelker, Thomas Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Walczak, Laura St. Mary's Janesville Hospital
Waldoch, Timothy Columbia St. Mary's, Inc.
Walker, Troy St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Washburn, Juliane Bay Area Medical Center
Werkheiser, Cindy Monroe Clinic
Westbrook, Diane River Falls Area Hospital
Wetenkamp, Vicki Holy Family Memorial
Wheeler, Susan St. Nicholas Hospital
Whitinger, Margaret Agnesian HealthCare
Woleske, Chris Bellin Hospital
Wymelenberg, Tracy Aurora Health Care
Ziebarth, Laura St. Mary's Hospital
Contributors ranging from $500 to $999
Andersen, Travis Columbia St. Mary's, Inc.
Anderson, Layton Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Bergmann, Michael Aurora Medical Center Summit
Brenton, Andrew Wisconsin Hospital Association
Carlson, Dan Bay Area Medical Center
Carlson, Peter Aurora Psychiatric Hospital
Connors, Lawrence St. Mary's Hospital Medical Center
Deich, Faye Sacred Heart Hospital
Dexter, Donn Mayo Health System - Eau Claire
Dietsche, James Bellin Hospital
Dolohanty, Naomi Aurora Health Care
Eckels, Timothy Hospital Sisters Health System
Frangesch, Wayne Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Freimund, Rooney Bay Area Medical Center
Graebner, David Aurora Sheboygan Memorial Medical Center
Granger, Lorna Aurora Health Care
Gullingsrud, Tim Hayward Area Memorial Hospital and Nursing Home
Huettl, Patricia Holy Family Memorial
Hyland, Carol Agnesian HealthCare
Jacobson, Terry St. Mary's Hospital of Superior
Jensema, Christine HSHS-Eastern Wisconsin Division
Kellar, Richard Aurora West Allis Medical Center
Kersten, Juliet Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Kerwin, Kathleen  
Kocourek, Cathie Aurora Medical Center in Two Rivers
Larson, Margaret Mercy Medical Center
Lentz, Darrell Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Logemann, Cari Aspirus, Inc.
Malone, Virginia St. Mary's Hospital
Mantei, Mary Jo Bay Area Medical Center
McNally, Maureen Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin
Miller, Clint Spooner Health System
Mulder, Doris Beloit Health System
Nelson, James Fort HealthCare
Nesse, Robert Mayo Clinic Health System
O'Keefe, James Mile Bluff Medical Center
Oland, Charisse Rusk County Memorial Hospital
Ordinans, Karen Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Ose, Peggy Riverview Hospital Association
Peterson, Douglas Chippewa Valley Hospital
Pollard, Dennis Froedtert & MCW Community Memorial Hospital campus
Quinn, George Wisconsin Hospital Association
Richards, Theresa Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Richardson, Todd Aspirus, Inc.
Rohrbach, Dan Southwest Health Center
Rutkowski, Jennifer Grant Regional Health Center
Schmitz, Bonnie Agnesian HealthCare
Sczygelski, Sidney Aspirus Wausau Hospital
Selberg, Heidi HSHS-Eastern Wisconsin Division
Shabino, Charles Wisconsin Hospital Association
Smith, Gregory Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Sobal, Larry Ministry Health Care
Sprecher, Lon  
Stuart, Philip Tomah Memorial Hospital
Swanson, Kerry St. Mary's Janesville Hospital
Thoreen, Peter Meriter-UnityPoint Health
VanCourt, Bernie Bay Area Medical Center
Wessels, Bill Aspirus, Inc.
White-Jacobs, Mary Beth Black River Memorial Hospital
Worrick, Gerald Ministry Door County Medical Center
Yaron, Rachel Ministry Saint Clare's Hospital
Contributors ranging from $1,000 to $1,499
Ashenhurst, Karla Ministry Health Care
Bablitch, Steve Aurora Health Care
Bailet, Jeffrey Aurora Health Care
Bard, Jeffrey Aurora Medical Center in Oshkosh
Bedwell, Elizabeth Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Garcia-Thomas, Cristy Aurora Health Care
Geboy, Scott Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman
Geraghty, Tricia Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Gunn, Veronica Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Gutzeit, Michael Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Hart, Shelly Aurora Health Care
Hayden, Kevin  
Janis, Gerald Aurora Health Care
Just, Lisa Aurora Health Care
Kosanovich, John Watertown Regional Medical Center
Kostroski, Sharon Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Lappin, Michael Aurora Health Care
Lewis, Jonathan St. Mary's Hospital
Loftus, Philip Aurora Health Care
Martin, Jeff Ministry Saint Michael's Hospital
McDonald, Mary Beth Aurora Health Care
McKevett, Timothy Beloit Health System
Mohorek, Ronald Ministry Health Care
Natzke, Ryan Marshfield Clinic
Nauman, Michael Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Nelson, Dave HSHS-Western Wisconsin Division
Norbin Killoran, Carrie Aurora Health Care
Potts, Dennis Aurora Health Care
Priest, Geoffrey Meriter-UnityPoint Health
Radoszewski, Pat Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Rakowski, Mark Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Rickelman, Debbie WHA Information Center
Rislov, Amy Aurora Health Care
Russell, John Columbus Community Hospital
Sanders, Robert Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Schafer, Michael Spooner Health System
Schmidt, Cheryl St. Elizabeth Hospital
Shanahan, Thomas Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Stamas, Peter Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Wolf, Edward Lakeview Medical Center
Contributors ranging from $1,500 to $1,999
Anderson, Sandy St. Clare Hospital & Health Services
Bloch, Jodi Wisconsin Hospital Association
Boatwright, Damond SSM Health Care-Wisconsin
Boese, Jennifer Wisconsin Hospital Association
Boland, Susan Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare - All Saints
Byrne, Frank St. Mary's Hospital
Coffman, Joan St. Joseph's Hospital
Court, Kelly Wisconsin Hospital Association
Duncan, Robert Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Falvey, Patrick Aurora Health Care
Francis, Jeff Ministry Health Care
Frank, Jennifer Wisconsin Hospital Association
Grasmick, Mary Kay Wisconsin Hospital Association
Harding, Edward Bay Area Medical Center
Herzog, Mark Holy Family Memorial
Heywood, Matthew Aspirus, Inc.
Hilt, Monica Ministry Saint Mary's Hospital
Johnson, Jodi Wisconsin Hospital Association
Kretschman, Robin Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Lepore, Michael Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Lewis, Gordon Burnett Medical Center
Meyer, Daniel Aurora BayCare Medical Center in Green Bay
Robertstad, John ProHealth Care - Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital
Roller, Rachel Aurora Health Care
Sexton, William Prairie du Chien Memorial Hospital
Sheehan, John
Stanford, Matthew Wisconsin Hospital Association
Wallace, Michael Fort HealthCare
Contributors ranging from $2,000 to $2,999
Alig, Joanne Wisconsin Hospital Association
Brenton, Mary E.
Brooks, Alenia Aurora Health Care
Brophy, Michael Aurora Health Care
Clapp, Nicole Grant Regional Health Center
Colman, Gerard Aurora Health Care
Desien, Nicholas Ministry Health Care
Gage, Weldon Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Gorelick, Marc Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Hanson, Gail Aurora Health Care
Kachelski, Joe Wisconsin Statewide Health Information Network
Kelch, Elaine
Kief, Brian Ministry Saint Joseph's Hospital
Leitch, Laura Hall Render Killian Heath & Lyman
Levin, Jeremy Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative
Normington, Jeremy Moundview Memorial Hospital & Clinics
O'Brien, Kyle Wisconsin Hospital Association
Pandl, Therese HSHS-Eastern Wisconsin Division
Potter, Brian Wisconsin Hospital Association
Sanders, Michael Monroe Clinic
Standridge, Debra Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Starmann-Harrison, Mary Hospital Sisters Health System
Troy, Peggy Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Contributors ranging from $3,000 to $4,999
Jacobson, Catherine Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin
Kammer, Peter The Kammer Group
Katen-Bahensky, Donna
Kerwin, George Bellin Hospital
Little, Steven Agnesian HealthCare
Mettner, Michelle Children's Hospital of Wisconsin
Neufelder, Daniel Ministry Health Care
Turkal, Nick Aurora Health Care
Contributors ranging from $5,000 to $9,999
Borgerding, Eric Wisconsin Hospital Association
Brenton, Stephen Wisconsin Hospital Association
Size, Tim Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative
Contributors $10,000 and above
Tyre, Scott Capitol Navigators, Inc



Top of page (10/17/14)


Medicaid Funding Among WHA’s Top Priorities in Upcoming State Budget Talks


When state budget discussions start after the first of the year in the Legislature, advocating for Medicaid funding will remain one of WHA’s top priorities. WHA will continue to aggressively seek adequate payment in this historically underfunded program.


“The hidden health care tax continues to be an anchor on Wisconsin employers,” WHA Executive Vice President Eric Borgerding told the WHA Board at its October meeting. “According to a study from the Milwaukee Business Foundation on Health, recouping unpaid costs from Medicare and Medicaid accounts for 23 cents of every commercial dollar paid to southeast Wisconsin hospitals. Unpaid costs from Wisconsin’s Medicaid program alone added $200 million to southeast Wisconsin employer health care costs in 2012.”


The WHA legislative agenda will also explore opportunities to expand funding for graduate medical education (GME). Borgerding said WHA will shift its focus to refining the existing GME programs to better meet the demand to create more in-state residency opportunities for physicians. 


WHA President Steve Brenton described two state-level initiatives that will be major WHA priorities in 2015. First, WHA has partnered with state officials and others to support a federal grant designed to accelerate action on five statewide priorities including population health improvement, payment and delivery transformation, new inpatient and ambulatory measures that will serve as a common core set used by purchasers and providers, HIT and behavioral health. Brenton said the grant, if awarded, will provide additional staff infrastructure that will help identify and spread best practices already ongoing in Wisconsin and encourage new initiatives that will improve the state’s health care status.


Brenton also noted the Wisconsin Council on Medical Education & Workforce (WCMEW) would be in receipt of provider surplus funds from the recently-dissolved Health Insurance Risk Sharing Plan (HIRSP). The positive development has caused WHA to formally incorporate WCMEW with two other founding members—the Wisconsin Medical Society and the Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative.


“This is a real shot in the arm that will help us boost programming designed to address tomorrow’s primary health care needs,” said Brenton.


George Quinn, executive director of WCMEW, reported that WCMEW is focused on developing a statewide strategy to ensure Wisconsin’s health care workforce can meet the increasing and changing demands for care. Quinn said the Council is taking a leading role in facilitating discussion around team-based care that is becoming more prevalent in Wisconsin. The WCMEW team-based care conference, which will be held November 12 in Wisconsin Dells, already has more than 150 registrants. For more information, go to: http://events.SignUp4.net/14TBC-1112


“We are delivering care in a rapidly changing environment,” Quinn said. “WCMEW’s goal is to serve as a multi-stakeholder venue for dialogue and discussion on how to ensure that Wisconsin has an adequate supply of health care professionals ready to meet the needs of our residents.”


In other business, the Board accepted the Nominating Committee’s recommendations for WHA Board appointments. Mike Wallace, president/CEO, Fort HealthCare, will serve as WHA 2015 chair-elect. The Board also approved the Association’s 2015 budget, including a three percent dues increase, the first dues increase in three years.


WHA Council Reports 

Physician Leadership – Chair Chuck Shabino, MD, reported that the newly-formed Council is already working on issues related to a proposal that would establish a physician health program in Wisconsin. Interstate medical licensure issues and barriers to the implementation of telemedicine were also discussed.


Public Policy – Chair Mike Wallace said Rep. Jim Steineke briefed the Council on what to expect in the next legislative session. Steineke said he appreciates the feedback he receives from WHA and its member hospitals and health systems. WHA staff briefed the group on a number of other key topics, including Medicaid, the health insurance exchange, and other issues related to advanced practice nurse prescribers.


Workforce Development – Joanne Alig, senior vice president policy and research, provided information to the WHA Workforce Council members about the changes expected in 2015 in the Wisconsin insurance exchange. The group also discussed the ACA employer mandate that begins in 2015.


Finance and Payment – Chair Steve Little reported that Craig Steele, project manager in the Division of Health Care Access and Accountability provided an update on the latest enrollment information in the federal marketplace and the BadgerCare Plus enrollment numbers. WHA staff briefed the Council on the issues and strategies regarding telemedicine policies.  


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WHA Board Approves Nominating Committee Recommendations


The Nominating Committee presented their recommendations to the WHA Board October 9. The Board voted and approved the Nominating Committees recommendations. The following individuals will serve on the WHA Board effective January 1, 2015.


Nicole Clapp

(2nd term)


Grant Regional Health Center, Lancaster

·         Council on Workforce Development, 2011 - 2014

·         WHA Financial Solutions Board, 2007-2012

·         WHA Executive Committee, 2012-2014

·         Network Adequacy Council, 2014

·         WHA Board, 2012-2014


Cathy Jacobson

(1st term)


Froedtert Health, Milwaukee

WHA Board (filling unexpired term), 2013-2014

·         Task Force on Graduate Medical Education, 2012-2014


Debra Standridge

(1st term)

President, North Market

Wheaton Franciscan – St. Joseph, Milwaukee

WHA Board (filling unexpired term), 2014


Peggy Troy

(Filling unexpired term)


Children’s Hospital and Health System, Inc., Milwaukee

·         AHA Alternate Delegate, 2012-2014


The WHA Board approved the following individual to chair the WHA Audit and Investment Committee:


John Russell

President and CEO

Columbus Community Hospital, Columbus

·         Council on Rural Health, 2009-2014

·         Council on Finance & Payment, 2009-2014

·         Audit and Investment Committee, 2009-2014

·         WHA Financial Solutions Board, 2009-2012

·         Medicaid Reengineering Group, 2011

·         WHA Enrollment Action Council. 2013-2014

·         Network Adequacy Council, 2014


The WHA Board approved the following AHA Delegates and Alternates:


Sandy Anderson



St. Clare Hospital, Baraboo

·         Physician Taskforce, 2003

·         HIT Taskforce, chair 2009

·         WHA Board, 2006-2014, chair 2012

·         WHA Executive Committee, 2011-2013

·         WHA Advocacy Committee, 2005-2012, chair 2013

·         Nominating Awards and Bylaw Committee, 2004, 2006, 2012

·         Wisconsin Hospitals Issue Advocacy Council, Inc., 2011, 2013

·         WHA Succession Planning Committee, 2013-2014

 ·        Council on Public Policy, 2104


Dan Neufelder


Sr. VP & Chief Operation Officer

Ministry Health Care

·         Council on Public Policy, 2008-2012

·         Advocacy Committee, chair 2014

·         WHA Succession Planning Committee

·         Wisconsin Hospitals Issue Advocacy Council, Inc., 2012, 2014

·        WHA Board, 2009-2014, chair 2013


John Oliverio

(AHA Alternate)

President and CEO

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare

·         WHA Board, 2007-2014

·         AHA Alternate Delegate, 2014


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WHA Testifies at State Tribal Relations Study Committee on Safe Haven Law

Staff express concerns about policy options presented to committee


A special committee of the Legislature, the Legislative Council Special Committee on State-Tribal Relations, held a hearing October 16 to take input and consider changes to Wisconsin’s safe haven law. Specifically, some of the proposed changes would have required a hospital worker to ask every parent who drops off their child under the safe haven law about that child’s tribal heritage, if any. WHA expressed concerns with this proposed option, both in written testimony and in-person at the committee hearing.


Jodi Johnson, WHA vice president of workforce and clinical practice, helped the committee understand the situation that occurs when a mother decides to relinquish her child at a hospital, either while still a patient of the hospital or from the general public. Johnson described a safe haven relinquishment as a “delicate situation,” saying that the main responsibility of any health care worker in that situation is to ensure that the baby is medically stabilized, healthy and provide the mother comfort that she can remain anonymous. Johnson also said that hospitals are already required to make a reasonable effort to obtain information, like race and ethnicity, but only once a parent decides to voluntarily provide that type of identifying information.    


WHA’s written testimony to the committee highlighted several concerns with any proposed additional hospital mandate, including the impact any requirement could have on the mother’s willingness to move forward with the safe haven relinquishment. Several individuals at the meeting raised the concern of requiring questions to be asked of a mother who expected this process to be completely anonymous. Some stated the mother may then second-guess her decision, choose to leave the hospital with her baby and subsequently leave her newborn child in an unsafe place.


As the Legislative Council described in their memo to the committee, “the right to anonymity that the safe haven law grants to a parent relinquishing a child is central to that law…The more the parent is pressed for identifying information, or otherwise delayed, the greater is the likelihood that the parent will leave with the child and subsequently abandon the child in an unsafe manner.”


WHA also highlighted the unrealistic expectation that any hospital worker at any moment in time would be required to know these specific questions—especially for a scenario that is so rare. The safe haven law allows any hospital worker to take custody of a child relinquished under the law. WHA’s written testimony to the committee said, “Hospital staff should have the ability to ask the parent for additional information, if the parent chooses to provide identifying information, but they should not be required to impose these questions onto any parent who correctly believes they have the right to stay anonymous.”


Last year, 51,609 births occurred in Wisconsin hospitals with 579 of those babies identified as having Native American Heritage. Out of all the births in Wisconsin last year, only 11 resulted in a safe haven relinquishment. 


The committee chose to not take action at the October 16 meeting and, instead, decided to form an advisory subcommittee that could take an in-depth look at the policy implications of changing Wisconsin’s safe haven law. The chairman of the committee, Rep. Jeff Mursau (R-Crivitz), stated that he would like the committee to be comprised of tribal members, legislators, a representative of the Wisconsin Hospital Association and a representative from a county social services department. 


See WHA’s testimony here: www.wha.org/pdf/WHAsafeHaven10-16-14.pdf.


See the Legislative Council’s memo to committee members here: www.wha.org/pdf/WisLegCouncil10-9-14.pdf.  


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Sens. Johnson, Baldwin Sign Onto Bipartisan Letter to CMS on Rural Health Care

WHA, RWHC continue similar efforts with CMS 


Wisconsin U.S. Senators Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) joined a group of bipartisan Senators led by Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) and John Thune (R-SD) in expressing concerns to the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS) that federal rules for health care facilities do not adequately consider the impact CMS decisions have on rural providers or communities.


In a letter to CMS Director Marilyn Tavenner, the group of 34 senators pressed for details about how the agency is incorporating rural health care experts earlier in rule-drafting, and called for comprehensive information on the rulemaking process. Noting that recent policy decisions have not adequately reflected the reality of health delivery in rural areas, the senators called on CMS to work toward practices and standards that take rural health facilities into account during its initial rulemaking process.


“We remain concerned these policy decisions do not reflect the reality of providing care in rural communities, and we request additional details on these consultation efforts in advance of future rulemaking,” read the letter. “The proportion of elderly rural Americans continues to grow, and even small policy changes or incremental payment adjustments have a significant impact on access to care in rural areas. Medicare beneficiaries should be able to obtain care within their own communities when possible, and we are committed to ensuring federal policies recognize and incorporate the unique challenges rural providers face.” Read the full letter at:



The Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) supports the Senate letter and thanks Senators Johnson and Baldwin for their support of rural hospitals and health care.


The Senate letter comes on the heels of a WHA/Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative (RWHC) initiative with U.S. House Members Ron Kind (D-WI 3rd) and Reid Ribble (R-WI 8th) to meet with high-level CMS officials regarding the impact of CMS policies on rural providers.


The August 4 meeting in Washington, DC with CMS included four rural Wisconsin hospital leaders and representatives from WHA and RWHC. The meeting was requested due to ongoing federal proposals that negatively impact rural health care. During the meeting Wisconsin hospitals leaders provided insight into how Wisconsin’s rural hospitals have demonstrated strong commitment to quality and cost efficiency—providing a value to the Medicare program—which is then undermined by CMS policies that fail to take into account the unique circumstances of rural hospitals. WHA and RWHC continue to advance this effort with CMS.


Read the WHA/RWHC letter to CMS at: www.wha.org/pdf/CavanaughCMS10-5-14.pdf.

Read the Kind/Ribble letter to CMS at: www.wha.org/pdf/CavanaughRuralHealth10-1-14.pdf.  


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WHA Health Law Manual Webinar: Deaths and Donation of Blood, Organs & Tissue


WHA will conclude its complimentary webinar series October 30 from 12 - 1 p.m. with a presentation of the “WHA Deaths and Donation of Blood, Organs & Tissue Manual.” This webinar will cover a health care provider’s legal duties to patients and their families after a patient’s death. It will discuss, among other things, the legal determination of death, procedures for the disposition of corpses and decedents’ personal property, death certificate and reporting requirements, autopsies, and HIV testing after death. The webinar will also cover the donation of blood, organs, and other tissues from both living and deceased donors.


WHA members are encouraged to register for this final webinar in the series. Sign-up information, as well as more information about this webinar may be found at http://events.SignUp4.net/HealthLawManual. Attorneys in attendance may earn CLE credit.


This webinar will be presented by Dennis J. Purtell and Kate L. Bechen of the law firm of Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek.


The Health Law Manuals are available for WHA members to view and download at www.wha.org/healthLawManual.aspx. WHA members who would like to access the Manuals should contact webmaster@wha.org to request a username and password.  


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WHA Workforce Council Discusses Upcoming Insurance Exchange


With open enrollment being only one month away, Joanne Alig, senior vice president policy and research, provided information to the WHA Workforce Council members about the changes expected in 2015 in the Wisconsin insurance exchange.  Alig provided the most recent data on enrollment in the exchange and in the Medicaid program, noting that key information about the impact on the uninsured is still unknown.  Hospitals are planning to continue enrollment efforts for 2015, including providing community outreach, hiring certified application counselors and participating in the regional enrollment networks.  Alig reviewed what is known to date about which insurers will offer qualified health plans in the exchange in 2015. Key issues for hospitals include network adequacy, 90-day grace period and changes in Medicaid and Medicaid reimbursement. Lastly, the group discussed the ACA employer mandate, which goes into effect in 2015 for businesses with more than 100 employees. While these issues are complex and dynamic, WHA continues to keep members updated as information develops and open enrollment begins November 15, 2014.  


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Member News: Normington Starts Role as President, Mercy Medical Center


Jeremy Normington assumed the role of president of Mercy Medical Center in Oshkosh October 1. Normington came from Moundview Memorial Hospital and Clinics in Adams-Friendship, where he had served as chief executive officer since 2009.  Prior to joining Moundview, Normington held positions at Cherokee Regional Medical Center in Iowa and St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Milwaukee.


Normington holds a doctorate degree in physical therapy from Concordia University in Mequon, and an MBA from Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. He is also a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.


Normington was appointed by Governor Jim Doyle to the Rural Health Development Council, and reappointed to this position by Governor Scott Walker. Normington also serves on the Board of Directors of Rural Wisconsin Healthcare Executives, and was a task force member of the Wisconsin Hospital Association Rural Health Initiative.  


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Wisconsin Quality Leaders Participate in Improvement Leader Fellowship


Nearly 60 quality leaders from across Wisconsin participated in the American Hospital Association/Health Research & Education Trust (AHA/HRET) Hospital Engagement Network (HEN) Improvement Leader Fellowship (ILF) held at the Kalahari in Wisconsin Dells October 8. 


According to HRET, “The ILF builds skills in leading improvement among AHA/HRET HEN hospital leaders. The ILF provides multi-faceted resources to support self-guided and peer-to-peer learning on improvement methods and tools, led by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) faculty through a blend of on-site networking events and live-streamed webinars.”


“The ILF has provided world-class quality improvement training and resources delivered to participants from IHI, which Wisconsin hospitals have taken full advantage of. The event in Wisconsin Dells was a culmination of the third year’s efforts,” said Tom Kaster, WHA quality improvement advisor.


Maryanne Whitney from Cynosure Health led the morning session, which focused on Sepsis and Clostridium Difficile (C-Diff) prevention, early recognition and care. IHI faculty member Jane Taylor provided an afternoon presentation on engaging patients and family members in improving the health care experience. In her presentation, Taylor introduced the concept of “Always Events.”  According to IHI and the Picker Institute, an Always Event is “… an event that is so important to patients and families that it is imperative that health care providers perform it consistently, every time.”


All three topics have been gaining attention and interest from Wisconsin hospitals. ILF attendees received valuable content that they can take back to their hospitals to lead their organization. Based on the significant amount of interest, WHA will be hosting patient and family engagement, C-Diff and Sepsis initiatives in 2015.  


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CEO Opportunity – The Richland Hospital, Richland Center


The Richland Hospital, an independent critical access hospital, is seeking candidates for the position of chief executive officer. The Richland Hospital owns and operates two rural health clinics in addition to the hospital. 


The CEO will report to a ten-member board of directors. Key areas of responsibility will include integrated strategic and financial planning, improved physician integration and collaboration, strong operations management and compliance, and the development and achievement of well-defined operating, financial, human resources, quality and marketing targets.


The ideal candidate will hold at minimum, a bachelor’s degree in business administration, healthcare administration, public health, medicine or a related discipline. In addition, a minimum of ten years of successful and progressive health care leadership experience in a rural critical access hospital setting is required. Previous CEO or COO experience is strongly preferred.


MSA Executive Search is assisting The Richland Hospital in the search for a chief executive officer. For additional information, or those wishing to share referrals, contact Patricia Neds at patricia.neds@msasearch.com.


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