CHA News

CHA’s Advocacy Continues as OHCA Moves Toward Final Growth Target

What’s happening: As the Office of Health Care Affordability (OHCA) inches closer to finalizing its first health care spending growth target, CHA and members continue to raise alarm bells on the proposal’s devastating impact, including testifying at this week’s OHCA board meeting.  

What else to know: This month, CHA commented on the OHCA board’s January discussion of the 3% target proposal, OHCA’s new effort to measure hospital spending, and the proposed data collection rules. 

Activity is heating up as the OHCA board prepares to finalize its initial spending growth target, with the final number expected as early as March 25 or as late as May 22. The OHCA board met this week for a deeper discussion of OHCA staff’s proposed spending target and the methodology underpinning it. CHA members came out in force at this meeting with six hospitals, two other hospital associations, and four physician organizations testifying during open comments, urging the office to reconsider its proposal. The board meeting also included discussion of OHCA’s proposal to increase the adoption of alternative payment methodologies and efforts to measure consumer affordability and spending. Meeting materials are available online.  

In the past week, CHA also submitted two comment letters to the office. The first addressed the board’s discussion of the 3% spending growth target that occurred in January, urging the board to take the necessary time to make a thoughtful decision and deeply consider the impact the proposed target would have on patients’ access to care. This letter also responded to OHCA’s recently announced effort to specifically measure hospital spending.  

The second letter addressed proposed but close-to-final data collection regulations, filed by the office on Feb. 21, that fail to provide clear, standardized guidance as to how data would be collected. CHA remains deeply concerned that the office’s ill-defined approach provides too much discretion to payers to determine how spending will be attributed to providers, making it near-impossible for providers to understand their own spending growth. 

CHA encourages members to continue submitting letters ahead of the March 11 comment deadline; additional information can be found in CHA’s recent alert. CHA will share its formal comment letter in advance of the submission deadline.