Lawmakers and Hospitals Attend The Center's Legislative Roundtable

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On Sept. 4 The Center for Health Affairs was joined by Rep. Mike Dovilla (R-Berea), Rep. Nicholas Celebrezze (D-Parma), Rep. Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood) and Sen. Larry Obhof (R-Medina) at University Hospitals Case Medical Center for a legislative roundtable entitled, “The State of Health Care in Northeast Ohio.”

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In terms of economic impact, our member hospitals’ contribution to the region is like having the Gay Games every week – or the Republican National Convention every month of the year.

On Sept. 4 The Center for Health Affairs was joined by Rep. Mike Dovilla (R-Berea), Rep. Nicholas Celebrezze (D-Parma), Rep. Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood) and Sen. Larry Obhof (R-Medina) at University Hospitals Case Medical Center for a legislative roundtable entitled, “The State of Health Care in Northeast Ohio.” The collaborative event was held to highlight policy priorities of The Center’s members, with particular attention given to reauthorizing the expanded Medicaid program.

Member hospitals sent representatives to discuss various aspects of the healthcare environment in Northeast Ohio with roundtable participants. The list of presenters included:

  • Mike Szubski, chief financial officer, University Hospitals
  • Paul Tait, chief strategic planning officer, University Hospitals
  • Dr. James Gutierrez, chairman of community internal medicine, Cleveland Clinic
  • Heather Stoll, vice president of external affairs, Sisters of Charity Health System
  • Dr. James Misak, associate director, family practice, MetroHealth System
  • Dr. Alice Stollenwerk Petrulis, medical director, case management, MetroHealth System

After presentations from the four health systems, Bill Ryan, president and CEO of The Center, and Scott Borgemeke, senior vice president of advocacy for the Ohio Hospital Association, provided remarks. In his comments, Bill Ryan reiterated the enormous impact member hospitals have on the regional economy in terms of employment and also the amount of taxes area hospitals generate.

“In terms of economic impact, our member hospitals’ contribution to the region is like having the Gay Games every week – or the Republican National Convention every month of the year,” Ryan said.

On behalf of the OHA, Scott Borgemenke reminded lawmakers that the new recipients of Medicaid insurance coverage were working-class people who genuinely need those benefits in order to remain healthy.

The legislative roundtable not only provided an opportunity for member hospitals to showcase some of their successes but also left lawmakers with two important takeaways. First, The Center’s members have a unified vision when it comes to today’s top health policy issues. And second, through collaboration and commitment to the region’s workforce, healthcare providers are the backbone of the regional economy in Northeast Ohio.

After the roundtable discussion, legislators were taken on a tour of UH’s proton therapy center, which is the only of its kind in the state of Ohio.

For more information about The Center’s Advocacy Forum of the legislative roundtable event, contact Tony Gutowski, public policy development manager, by phone at 216.255.3610 or via email.

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With a rich history as the Northeast Ohio hospital association, dating back to 1916, The Center for Health Affairs serves as the collective voice of hospitals and the source for Northeast Ohio hospital and healthcare information. As the leading advocate for Northeast Ohio hospitals, The Center aims to enhance the effectiveness of the healthcare community and the health of the communities it serves by providing expertise, resources and solutions to address the challenges faced by the region’s healthcare providers. The Center’s efforts focus on areas that benefit member hospitals from a regional approach, including healthcare workforce; emergency preparedness; public policy and advocacy; finance and reimbursement; and community initiatives. And because of its business affiliation with CHAMPS Healthcare, The Center has the resources to provide a broad level of professional services to its members. The Center, located in downtown Cleveland, is proud to advocate on behalf of 34 acute-care hospitals and two long-term acute-care hospitals in six counties. The Center for Health Affairs is honored to be named as one of The Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Top Workplaces in 2014 and to ERC’s Northcoast99 List in 2003, 2004, 2010, 2012 and 2014. For more, visit chanet.org.

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Deanna Moore
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