AHQA to re­struc­ture, will lay off two of three staffers

Modern Healthcare - - Late News -

The Amer­i­can Health Qual­ity As­so­ci­a­tion, a group rep­re­sent­ing 38 state and re­gional qual­ity im­prove­ment or­ga­ni­za­tions, or QIOs, will be re­struc­tured and two of its three staffers will be laid off in Fe­bru­ary, AHQA Ex­ec­u­tive Vice Pres­i­dent David Schulke said. “The board has been con­sult­ing with AHQA mem­bers,” Schulke said. “They’re looking for a way to have a less-ex­pen­sive or­ga­ni­za­tion.” Both Schulke and Michele John­son, the AHQA’s vice pres­i­dent of gov­ern­ment af­fairs, will be let go some­time next month, with Bruce Ehrle, se­nior di­rec­tor of gov­ern­ment af­fairs and ex­ec­u­tive op­er­a­tions, stay­ing on “prob­a­bly through the fall,” Schulke said. QIOs, which con­tract with the CMS to help poor­per­form­ing hos­pi­tals ad­dress qual­ity-of­care prob­lems be­fore they re­sult in reg­u­la­tory fines and penal­ties, have been op­er­at­ing un­der a three-year con­tract with CMS (Aug. 25, 2008, p. 18) that runs through July 2011 and which is $150 mil­lion less than their pre­vi­ous con­tract, a drop of 28%. The or­ga­ni­za­tion moved into a smaller of­fice in De­cem­ber 2009 and is hav­ing dif­fi­culty with its tele­phones, Schulke said, which has led some to be­lieve that the or­ga­ni­za­tion had closed.

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