February 9, 2022
One of the biggest challenges facing hospitals during the pandemic is workforce shortages – specifically beside nurses. This crisis started before COVID-19 and will continue after – fueled by a myriad of developing issues. One constant is that we face an increasing need & a decreasing supply of the hospital nurses who are critical to providing the lifesaving care that patients need every day.
Dr. Peter Buerhaus joins Chip to discuss the cyclical nature of these shortages, how COVID has made it worse, and what hospitals and policymakers can do to alleviate some of these challenges.
A nurse by training, Peter is also a health care economist and active researcher on the economics of the nursing workforce. His most recent research was published in Health Affairs titled “Nurse Employment During The First Fifteen Months Of The COVID-19 Pandemic” and detailed critical information about the country’s nursing infrastructure. A short summary of the findings was outlined by Montana State University.
Would you like to hear from a nurse who travelled to one of the nation’s first hotspots to battle COVID-19? Listen to Fighting on the Frontlines with Fiona Chew for a firsthand depiction of saving patients during the pandemic.
January 26, 2022
In many ways 2022 is starting off just like 2021 with COVID-19 dominating our lives and health care policy taking centerstage in front of a gridlocked Congress. And just like last year, Chris Jennings and Doug Badger return to Hospitals In Focus to prognosticate on the upcoming year in health policy. Coming from each side of the political spectrum, the two long-time health policy wonks discuss with Chip how the Biden administration has handled the COVID crisis. - What did they get right and where do they need to course correct? The three also examine the seemingly new role of the Supreme Court in the role of legislating in a divided Washington and what this could mean for health care policy.
Chris Jennings has spent decades working in the White House, Congress and private sector. He served in both the Clinton and Obama White Houses as Senior Advisor to the President for Health Policy and helped pass, enact and implement the ACA, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and numerous other health reforms.
Doug Badger has been in public policy for many decades serving as a policy advisor to the White House, U.S. Senate, Department of HHS and the SSA. Doug worked in the Bush (43) administration and developed the administration’s proposal for adding prescription drug coverage to Medicare. He also represented the White House in negotiations with Congress that resulted in the enactment of the Medicare Modernization Act.
Interested in hearing Doug and Chris’ first episode of HIF? Take a listen to Building Biden’s Health Agenda with Chris Jennings and Doug Badger.
November 29, 2021
In this special edition of Hospitals in Focus, we are sharing a fireside chat Chip recently had with retiring Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO). It was recorded last month at the Federation’s Board of Governors meeting.
This is a wide-ranging, informative discussion where Chip and Sen. Blunt talk about everything from Medicaid expansion to the growing partisan divide in Washington, DC.
After serving more than 25 years in Congress and nearly 50 years in public service, Senator Blunt has a unique perspective on where we are today – and where health care policy is headed in the future. He is also one of the few members of Congress to ever hold leadership positions in both the Senate and House.
We hope you enjoy this conversation as much as the audience did.
November 17, 2021
Despite being pushed to the brink during the COVID-19 pandemic, rural hospitals answered the call – fighting adversity to save millions of lives.
It was just another example of the important role these facilities play in the communities they serve. During this episode Chip talks to a veteran of rural hospitals – Doug Weaver, CEO of Hillcrest Hospital Pryor in Oklahoma, which is part of FAH member Ardent Health Services. He discusses the unique challenges his facility, and others like it, faced at the height of the COVID-19 surge.
Doug also talks about the changes in rural health care he has seen during his 40-year career – from the rise of telemedicine to growing staffing shortages. Additionally, Doug explains to Chip how being part of an integrated health care system, like Ardent, helps smaller hospitals keep their doors open to patients.
November 3, 2021
Jessica Smith, a respiratory therapist from outside Pulaski, Tennessee, is well known in her small community for her extraordinary dedication and compassion to her patients and family. In this episode, Jessica explains to Chip that like many frontline caregivers she has begun to experience “hero fatigue,” but adds that she still loves her job and does her best to focus on the positive. Her inspiration home life, along with her work ethic led to her winning LifePoint Health’s Mercy Award this year. The episode wraps up with her talking about what that recognition meant to her and her team at Southern Tennessee Regional Health System.
September 22, 2021
Every year, FAH joins mental health organizations and other proponents across the U.S. and around the world to raise awareness of suicide prevention during September, National Suicide Prevention Month. As society continues to struggle with COVID-19, there has been much discussion of the adverse psychological impacts of social distancing isolation and being away from loved ones. In this episode, Chip is joined by Karen Johnson of Universal Health Services and they discuss a wide range of topics from the ways COVID has affected the psyche of children and how to reemerge back into society after lockdown to what Universal Health Services is doing to help prevent suicides and the importance of celebrities sharing their struggles with mental health.
September 7, 2021
As the pandemic persists, and the increasing caseload caused by the Delta variant continues to force hospitals to adapt to new challenges, we turn to learning hospital and health systems to understand how they are uniquely positioned to treat patients during the COVID crisis. Chip and his guest Marty Bonick, President & CEO of Ardent Health Services, discuss what hospitals are seeing on the ground during this latest surge. They also spoke about the efforts of integrated health systems, like Ardent, to increase the quality of care for patients during and after the pandemic.
August 11, 2021
Hospitals are not just the four walls of a building; they are also the backbone in an American community. As the pandemic continues across the country, Chip and Jeff Goldsmith examine how hospitals learned to treat a disease without a proven cure or readily available therapies. They also spoke about what characteristics were displayed by hospitals that demonstrated successes during the past 18 months of this COVID-19 crisis. Jeff is the President of Health Futures, Inc. The two discuss the benefits of the ever-evolving hospital as well as its changing role in health care.
July 28, 2021
Fiona Chew is the kind of nurse you want at your bedside. Her positive attitude and willingness to go above and beyond make her an excellent advocate for her patients and colleagues. Early on in the pandemic during the New York/New Jersey surge, Ardent Health Services asked for volunteers to assist the hospitals in the hotspot. Fiona didn’t hesitate to go. Listen to Fiona give you her story from the frontline.
July 14, 2021
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has just survived its most recent challenge at the Supreme Court. We wanted to hear both its incredible history of survival in the courts and the basic tenets of the ACA. Chip is joined by the founder of Families, USA, Ron Pollack. The two discuss their personal stories of working to help support the ACA and how the ACA should be expanded under the Biden Administration to help end coverage gaps.
Interested in learning more about the ACA and its expansion? Check out What the Nation Could Learn from ACA Health Coverage Expansion in CA with Peter Lee