September 18, 2015
The Power of Volunteers
"Guide us so that we may use the privilege given us to help the aged, the ill, and the very young with generosity, with discretion, and gentleness."
Those words are part of the Maryland Association of Hospital Auxiliaries (MAHA) prayer for auxilians, words that capture the spirit of the thousands of women and men who volunteer at Maryland's hospitals and have a profound impact on your patients and families. Hospital auxiliary members and volunteers make sure families are updated on their loved ones' statuses; they guide stressed visitors through maze-like halls; they knit warm wool caps for newborns; and they provide countless other services, some noticed, some not. Think HCAHPS scores are important? Undoubtedly, hospital volunteers have a hand in boosting them. Have budget concerns? Auxiliaries can go a long way toward stretching a hospital's dollar. A 2009 National Institutes of Health study concluded that the use of volunteers offers significant cost savings to hospitals and enhances patient satisfaction scores.
But Maryland's hospital volunteers and auxiliaries need your help.
This week, I had the opportunity to speak with members of MAHA about the massive health care delivery transformation underway in the state and how volunteers will never cease to be essential to the work hospitals do.
There were two lessons I took from this meeting. The first is that auxilians - intensely humble, hard-working and dedicated people - are powerful reminders that the most important work you do is in service of patients and their families. It can be too easy for executives to get caught up in the hustle of management - long-term strategic planning, contract negotiations, regulatory navigation, etc. But these volunteers remind us that hospitals are, at their heart, simply places of healing and hope. Spend some time with them and you'll reconnect with and be inspired by that purpose.
The second lesson - really more of a challenge for us all- is that volunteers' and auxiliaries' numbers are dwindling, and so is membership in MAHA - just 32 of Maryland's hospitals are currently members. Roughly 125,000 Marylanders volunteer at hospitals or other health care organizations, but their percentage has dropped from a decade ago. Unsurprisingly, the majority of hospital auxiliaries are older, and there doesn't seem to be enough younger volunteers entering the pipeline to help the next generation of patients.
So, what can you do? Start by checking out some of the many online resources available to encourage volunteerism at nonprofit organizations, like this handy slide deck from Get Involved Canada. You can also encourage your volunteer leaders to be part of MAHA (for more information or to join, email MAHA President Marlene Cochran at But perhaps the best way to help your auxiliary thrive is to make a conscious commitment to them and include their work - and their input - in your organization's future plans.

Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter
MHA's 2016 Annual 
Membership Meeting

June 13 and 14, 2016
Four Seasons Hotel, Baltimore

September 22
September 24
Population Health and the Role of Nursing
Graduate Medical Education Work Group Meets
The Health Services Cost Review Commission's Innovations in Graduate Medical Education work group met last week to consider preliminary recommendations for its final report, due to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation by December 31. Joe Ross, President and CEO of Meritus Medical Center, briefed the work group on the establishment of a primary care residency program in rural Maryland. Materials on the meeting, along with future meeting dates, can be found here. The next meeting will be held October 23.
Quarterly Financial, Utilization Reports Available
The financial reports for the second quarter of 2015 are now available for MHA members. To access the Accounts Receivable and Combined Financial Trends and Utilization reports, click here. Reports are available only to members.
Regulatory Reform Commission Seeks Input
Gov. Larry Hogan's Regulatory Reform Commission is conducting a comprehensive review of Maryland's regulatory climate in an effort to identify problems that affect Maryland businesses. The commission is co-chaired by Abba Poliakoff and Jim Soltesz, with Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford serving as ex-officio chair. As part of the review, the commission is holding regional meetings, meant to reach business communities in various parts of the state. The commission welcomes your attendance and participation in providing examples of specific regulatory challenges. All meetings are from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • September 17, 2015 - University of Maryland - College Park, Adele H. Stamp Student Union, 1021A Union Lane, College Park
  • September 24, 2015 - Decoy Museum, 215 Giles Street, Havre de Grace
  • September 30, 2015 - Volvo Group Trucks, 13403 Volvo Way, Hagerstown
  • October 7, 2015 - Jaycee's Community Center, 3090 Crain Highway, Waldorf
  • October 13, 2015 - Hyatt Regency, 100 Heron Boulevard, Cambridge
The commission can also be contacted at: Office of Lt. Governor, Boyd K. Rutherford, State House, 100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401, or 410-260-3814.
MHEI Annual Conference Encourages Physicians
The Maryland Healthcare Education Institute's fall conference (October 18 and 19) will increase participants' knowledge of population health; especially issues that impact physicians.

Accelerate Collections by Capturing Missing Charges and Lost Revenue
Health care providers are facing common challenges - transitioning to ICD-10, managing the risk of new reimbursement models, improving net revenue, reducing days in accounts receivable, and increasing efficiency.

2016 American Hospital Association Environmental Scan Released
The 2016 American Hospital Association Environmental Scan has been released. The scan is compiled from national sources with recommendations from select AHA governance committees and provides insight and information about market forces that have a high probably of affecting the health care field.

Monday, September 21
Carmela Coyle presents to Anne Arundel Medical Center Foundation board

Thursday - Friday, September 24 - 25
MHA Executive Committee retreat
The Washington Post, By Ovetta Wiggins, September 13
Washington Business Journal, By Tina Reed, September 11
Baltimore Business Journal, By Jeff Clabaugh, September 15
Modern Healthcare, By Shannon Muchmore, September 14
WUSA, September 15
The Washington Post, By Josh Hicks, September 15
The Baltimore Sun, By Meredith Cohn, September 16