VAHHS: review of health care bill as lawmakers return home

by Devon Green, Vice President of Government Relations, VAHHS Ding, dong, the 2021-2022 legislative biennium is dead! Or, on life support until we see if the governor issues any more vetoes and calls a special session.

It’s been a long two years, as evidenced by the number of departing legislators, including Bill Lippert, Chairman of the House Health Care Committee. I will never forget that day in March 2019 when he asked health care providers what they needed during the pandemic and then passed supportive legislation in about 24 hours. Thank you.

Our priorities this year were workforce, mental health and regulatory relaxations. Regulatory flexibilities have been extended through the spring of 2023. The Legislature has passed several workforce initiatives for nurses, including: $2 million for nurse educators, $400,000 for preceptor compensation at hospitals at critical access, $2.5 million for employer nursing pipelines, $2.5 million in loan repayment to nurses. and other suppliers, $1 million in loans to nursing professors and $1 million to simulation labs. The Legislature also allocated significant funding for mental health personnel and passed the governor’s proposal for $500,000 in emergency services for mental health crisis patients with long stays.

Click HERE for links to VAHHS Bill Tracker.

These ventures would be strenuous during a regular session, but labor challenges, new variants, and supply shortages cropped up like a chainsaw murderer in a 70s horror movie every time we thought to be able to take a collective breath. Fortunately, I work closely with those who move our health care system and our government forward to serve Vermonters. These people are truly inspiring and I appreciate their work.

Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems May 16, 2022

Comments are closed.