Columbia County Public Hospital District Board Meeting Agenda: Board Agenda
Columbia County Public Hospital District #1 Board Agenda for Special Meeting, July 10th: Board Agenda
The news of the week is that the Thurston County Superior Court agreed with us that the state’s new Certificate of Need rules went too far – and she invalidated the rules. The rules dramatically expanded the types of transactions subject to CN, a step that the judge said was not supported by the underlying certificate of need law. Although the ruling has not yet been issued, the judge spoke from the bench about how the agency rules must enforce the law, but not expand it. This is a good outcome.
Affiliations between hospitals can help preserve and expand health care services in communities large and small. This isn’t a trend confined to Washington state. National industry and regulatory pressures are pushing hospitals to improve quality, reduce costs, and make it easier for patients to move between providers. This is critically important work, but it isn’t easy to do alone. And in some areas, a partner may not be enough. The reduction of services and the potential closure of hospitals is already happening, and will be a real threat for the next several years.
At the same time, community members are uncertain about what all this change means to them. It’s important that hospitals continue to engage the community in how changes in health care are going to affect them. We’ll be talking more about community engagement—along with a lot of other hot topics— at our annual WSHA & AWPHD Rural Hospital Conference in Chelan. We hope you can join us.
WSHA President and CEO