ICHA 2015 Annual Meeting

Here is the agenda and registration form for ICHA’s 2015 Annual Meeting.

Info_for_ICHA_2015_Fall_Meeting

IL Catholic hospitals ‘relieved’ over demise of CA physician-assisted suicide bill, warn of future efforts

The Illinois Catholic Health Association released the following press release today.

Illinois Catholic Health Association relieved over
roadblock to physician-assisted suicide movement

CHICAGO – The board of directors of the Illinois Catholic Health Association today expressed relief that a California legislative push to legalize physician-assisted suicide has stalled for the year, but warned Illinois residents to remain vigilant against similar efforts.

The California legislation allowing doctors to prescribe life-ending drugs to terminally ill patients was approved by the state senate in June but was pulled from a lower chamber committee hearing on Tuesday for lack of needed votes.

However, ICHA Executive Director Patrick Cacchione said the issue will remain on the political landscape, noting the recent court-ordered legalization of physician-assisted suicide in Canada. He said ICHA board members will seek to stymie any potential initiative in Illinois, and stressed that the board’s stance is based on Catholic social teaching and sound medical care standards.

“This position is grounded in our respect for the sacredness of human life, our long tradition of caring for persons who are most vulnerable, our commitment to the provision of high quality palliative care and our concern for the integrity of medical, nursing and allied health professionals,” Cacchione said.

Currently legal in four states and pending in another due to a court case, physician-assisted suicide made national headlines last year when Brittany Maynard, a 29-year-old California woman with terminal brain cancer, moved to Oregon to take advantage of that state’s law allowing doctors to prescribe lethal doses of medication to terminally ill patients. Maynard died on Nov. 1 after taking the drugs.

Cacchione said conversations about end-of-life issues too often focus on fears of pain, isolation and becoming a burden on family. But Catholic health care’s traditional focus on palliative care relieves those concerns by providing dignified and compassionate end-of-life care.

“Palliative care anticipates the physical, psycho-social and spiritual needs of persons living with advanced serious illness and addresses their suffering,” Cacchione said.

He noted that although proponents of legalizing physician-assisted suicide paint the issue as a matter of self-determination, the opposite is true.

“It is in fact a social act, involving others beyond the patient and requiring government oversight,” he said.

Cacchione said greater access to palliative care is needed, a concern echoed by the 2014 Institute of Medicine study, “Dying in America.”

“We promote public policy that will improve and expand access to the implementation and delivery of high-quality palliative and end-of-life care,” he said.

****

ICHA is a voluntary association of Catholic health and social service organizations, along with their religious sponsors and health systems. Currently over 95 percent of the Catholic hospitals, nursing homes, and social service agencies in Illinois belong to ICHA.

 

Executive Director’s Report – June, 2015

RECENT ACTIVITIES
The second quarter of 2015, ICHA’s Executive Director continued to meet individually with leadership and is responding to various challenges facing Catholic healthcare in Illinois. The greatest challenge has been a bill sponsored by the ACLU to amend Illinois’ Healthcare Right of Conscience Act (SB 1564). ICHA, in conjunction with the Catholic Conference of Illinois (CCI) and the Bishops, have worked hard to modify SB 1564 to have it comply with current Catholic healthcare practices. Although we feel the bill is unnecessary, our position is now neutral, much to the consternation of the pro-life community. As part of this effort, the Executive Director of ICHA has interviewed with and been quoted in a variety of media outlets.
ICHA’s Executive Director continues his travels throughout the state, meeting personally with Sponsors, Bishops, Board members and CEOs.
In May, ICHA hosted a meeting of the Mission Leaders on May 7th at the Portiuncula Center for Prayer, Frankfort, IL. The speakers included Terry McGuire, principal of McGuire Associates, on managing change in Catholic healthcare, and Maureen Gallagher, with the Reid Group, on preparing Catholic healthcare leaders for the future. Mary Ann Bibat, with Chicago Catholic Charities, presented on coordinated community based care.
In June, ICHA hosted a meeting of the Ethicists/Healthcare Vicars on June 10th at the Presence Health offices in Mokena, IL. Speakers included Zach Wichmann, Director of Government Relations for CCI, on SB 1564; Fr. William Grogan on limited physician practices; Amy Martin, Presence Health ethicists, on POLST implementation; and Erica Laethem, OSF ethicist, on physician assisted suicide. Other issues covered included:
• Uniform Province wide protocol re: ERDs Part VI/Responsum,
• Recent CHA report on ethicists re: theological/ecclesial competencies,
• Corporate integrity over pension plan funding re: public juridic persons and
• ERD formation for clinical providers e.g. residency programs.

2015 UPCOMING MEETINGS
ICHA will be holding their Annual Meeting on October 22rd at the Union League Club in downtown Chicago. The keynote speaker will be Chicago Archbishop Blase Cupich. Additional speakers are Marian Jennings, President of M. Jennings Consulting, and Brian Corbin, Senior Vice President for Social Policy of Catholic Charities USA.
ADVOCACY UPDATE
With regard to the proposed federal HHS regulations mandating coverage for contraception and sterilization, ICHA’s Executive Director continues to follow this issue closely. Also, the Congress successfully extended funding for the State Children’s Health Insurance Plan (SCHIP) for two additional years. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Affordable Care Act and the constitutionality of subsidies to people enrolled in federal healthcare exchanges. Finally, as mentioned above, ICHA is actively involved in SB 1564, which has yet to be voted on by the full House.
MISSION EDUCATION
As an update on ICHA’s Chaplaincy Education Program with the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC), ICHA continues to register participants. To date, 145 persons registered for the course; 89 have completed it.
ICHA FINANCES
ICHA continues to operate under a balanced budget. ICHA recently developed their FY 15-16 budget which was recommend unanimously by the Finance Committee and approved by the Board on March 27th. For the first time in three years, ICHA’s dues will be increased by 3% in the upcoming fiscal year. Invoices for the FY 15-16 dues will go out on July 1st.
CONCLUSION
Thank you for all you do on behalf of the ministry. We continue to look for better ways to serve you and are always open to new ideas. If ICHA may assist you in any way, please contact me anytime at pcacchione@il-cha.org.

The passing of Francis Cardinal George

The staff of ICHA and its Board of Directors are greatly saddened by the news of the death of Cardinal George.
Francis Cardinal George was a steadfast supporter and leader of Catholic healthcare in Illinois. He was instrumental in strengthening the Illinois Catholic Health Association (ICHA) and maintaining its relevancy. Furthermore, his leadership as Cardinal of the Archdiocese of Chicago and as the President of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB), provided a strong voice that declared healthcare as a human right while recognizing the value of human life from conception to natural death.

May the Angels lead you into paradise;
may the martyrs greet you at your arrival
and lead you into the holy city, Jerusalem.
May the choir of Angels greet you and
like Lazarus, who once was a poor man,
may you have eternal rest.

ICHA 2015 Annual Meeting

ICHA’s Annual Meeting will be held on Thursday, October 22, 2015

ICHA Board of Director’s Statement on Governor Rauner’s Proposed Budget

Illinois Catholic health and social service agencies have a major, positive impact on the quality of life for many citizens in Illinois.
• 44 Catholic hospitals, 22 nursing facilities and 26 other Catholic sponsored services organizations including hospice, home health, assisted living and senior housing provide care to over 9 million Illinoisans annually, many who are poor, underserved or uninsured.
• Our hospitals alone provided impatient care to over 2 million Medicare beneficiaries and 1.3 million Medicaid beneficiaries in 2014. In 2014, Medicare accounted for 31% of all patients served, while Medicaid accounted for 19.6% of all patients served. (source: IDPH Annual Hospital Questionnaire)
• Catholic nursing homes care for over 4,000 residents daily, many who are Medicaid or Dual Eligible residents. They provide 1.5 million days of care annually and employ over 5,000 employees.
• In 2014 Catholic Charities provided services to hundreds of thousands of individuals through over 200 programs for food, clothing, shelter, literacy, etc.
All of this was provided as Illinois Medicaid spending ranked 49th in the country for per-enrollee spending. Governor Rauner’s proposed cuts of $1.5 billion in Medicaid and other social programs will hinder our efforts to serve the neediest among us.
Just estimating for our Catholic hospitals alone, the aggregate Medicaid cuts would total over $200 million. To sustain this shortfall, over 3000 jobs would be put at risk and the economic activity associated with these lost jobs would be a negative $480 million.
Because our faith and commitment are strong and constant, the state of Catholic healthcare and Catholic social service ministries in Illinois is strong and will remain strong. However, without the assistance and support of the State of Illinois, many of our neediest citizens, mostly children and the elderly, will bear the brunt of these draconian budget cuts.
Therefore, the ICHA Board of Directors strongly believes that Governor Rauner and the Illinois General Assembly have the economic, budgetary and moral obligation to pass a budget that provides for strong, equitable healthcare and social services for its citizens who are most vulnerable

Executive Director’s Report – March, 2015

RECENT ACTIVITIES
For the first quarter of 2015, ICHA’s Executive Director continued to meet individually with leadership and is responding to various challenges facing Catholic healthcare in Illinois and at the federal level. These challenges include advocating for continued funding of the federal State Children’s Health Insurance Plans (SCHIP) and draconian state budget cuts directed at Medicaid, Accountable Care Entities (ACEs) and a variety of social service programs. ICHA is also organizing an advocacy effort to defeat SB 1564, a bill sponsored by the ACLU to amend Illinois’ Healthcare Right of Conscience Act. On March 16th ICHA’s Executive Director was a guest on Relevant Radio discussing SB 1564.
ICHA’s Executive Director continues his travels throughout the state, meeting personally with Sponsors, Bishops, Board members and CEOs. He met with the Board of Directors on January 16th and March 26th and the Finance Committee on January 7th and March 18th. On March 27th the Executive Director also met with the Board of the Illinois Catholic Conference (CCI).
In February, ICHA’s Executive Director attended the City Club of Chicago luncheon featuring Archbishop Cupich as the keynote speaker. He convened a conference call with all the Healthcare Vicars, and organized and attended a meeting in Springfield with Bishop Paprocki, diocesan healthcare CEOs and the Executive Director of the Springfield Diocese Catholic Charities. He also met with Dougal Hewitt, Vice President of Presence Health, and Father Grogan, Healthcare Vicar for the Archdiocese of Chicago, in late February.
In March, the Executive Director attended the Illinois Business Immigration Coalition (IBIC) as a guest of Presence Health. Archbishop Cupich was a panelist along with Senator Kirk, Congressman Kinzinger, Congressman Dold and Governor Rauner. He also convened a conference call on ministerial positions with ICHA ethicists and attended Presence Health’s Ethics Day.
2015 UPCOMING MEETINGS
ICHA’s Executive Director will meet with the ICHA Mission Leaders on May 7th, which will be held at Presence Health Offices in Mokena. Dates still to be determined, in May or June, are conference call meetings for the Finance Committee, the Board of Directors; and the in-person meeting of ICHA Ethicists/Healthcare Vicars.
ADVOCACY UPDATE
ICHA continues to participate in advocacy calls by the Catholic Health Association (CHA) and working at the state level with the Illinois Catholic Conference (CCI). At the federal level, ICHA conducted a letter writing campaign to members of the Illinois congressional delegation urging them to support continued funding of the SCHIP program. ICHA is also coordinating efforts with CCI to distribute a fact sheet opposing SB 1564 and educating and lobbying in an effort to defeat the bill. Finally, ICHA is taking the lead from IHA on advocating against Governor Rauner’s budget cuts and lobbying accordingly.
MISSION EDUCATION
As an update on ICHA’s Chaplaincy Education Program with the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC), ICHA continues to register participants. To date, 143 persons registered for the course; 89 have completed it.
ICHA completed its third webinar on February 26th in collaboration with Loyola University. The presenter was Jeannie Fry, Chief Legal Affairs Officer for Presence Health. Jeannie presented on “Structural Changes Needed to Compete in Today’s Healthcare Workplace”. Larry Singer, Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, co-hosted and participated in the webinar as well.
ICHA’s Executive Director also met with the Chicago Archdiocese’s Task force on Lay Ecclesiastical Ministries (LEM) to explore developing lay ministers in the healthcare field. This meeting was held at the Archbishop Quigley Center.
ICHA FINANCES
ICHA continues to operate under a balanced budget. ICHA recently developed their FY ‘15-‘16 budget which was recommend unanimously by the Finance Committee and approved by the Board on March 27th. For the first time in three years, the budget includes a 3% increase in ICHA dues. To avoid future dues increases, ICHA is actively pursuing foundation funding. In the last quarter, ICHA submitted six funding requests to a variety of foundations.
CONCLUSION
Thank you for all you do on behalf of the ministry. We continue to look for better ways to serve you and are always open to new ideas.  If ICHA may assist you in any way, please contact me anytime at pcacchione@il-cha.org.

ICHA WISHES ALL OF YOU A HAPPY EASTER!

Executive Director’s Report, January 2015

RECENT ACTIVITIES

For the final quarter of 2014, ICHA’s Executive Director continued to meet individually with leadership and is responding to various challenges facing Catholic healthcare in Illinois and at the federal level. These challenges include implementing same sex marriage benefits, expansion of Illinois Medicaid contraception benefits and cooperation issues around Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and Accountable Care Entities (ACEs).

ICHA’s Annual Meeting on October 23rd, at the Hilton Rosemont/Chicago O’Hare Hotel, was a great success. Approximately 50 persons attended morning Mass and over 110 persons were in attendance for the meeting. The speakers examined the ethical and administrative challenges in a rapidly changing healthcare environment and the specific challenges to Catholic healthcare facilities and their sponsors. Cardinal George also provided his reflections on 17 years as Cardinal of the Archdiocese of Chicago and Catholic healthcare. The evaluations were extremely positive and offered suggestions for next year’s meeting.

Also, during the Annual Meeting, it was announced that the Sponsors had approved ICHA’s new Board of Directors and Officers for 2014-2015. They are as follows: Daniel Perryman (Chair), Bishop Thomas Paprocki (Vice Chair), Br. Thomas Keusenkothen (Finance Chair), Bishop Daniel Jenky, Msgr. Michael Boland, Sr. Jeanne Haley, Sr. Patricia Ann Koschalke, Msgr. Mark Merdian, Nancy Razo, Steve Roach, Sr. Jomary Trstensky, Sandra Bruce, Barbara Prosser, Janine Rossi, Theresa Rutherford and new member, Sr. Sharon Ann Walsh. A special presentation was made to both Br. Tom and Cardinal George for their years of service to ICHA and the Catholic healthcare ministry.

ICHA’s Executive Director continues his travels throughout the state, meeting personally with Sponsors, Bishops, Board members and CEOs. In October and November, the Executive Director attended Peoria Diocese’s Ethics Conference with Bishop Jenky. Cosponsored and attended the Neiswanger Ethics Conference at Loyola Medical Center, organized and participated in conference calls with both ICHA ethicists and Diocesan Healthcare Vicars on Ebola concerns, attended a Chicago City luncheon with Sandy Bruce as the keynote speaker, met with Mario Dickerson, Executive Director of the Catholic Physicians Guild, attended the Catholic Conference of Illinois (CCI) Board meeting and the Installation Mass of Archbishop Blase Cupich.

2015 UPCOMING MEETINGS

ICHA’s Finance Committee will meet on Wednesday, January 7th and on March 18th by conference call. The Board of Directors will meet by conference call on Wednesday, January 19th. The spring Board of Directors Meeting will be held in person on Thursday, March 26th, at the Hilton Rosemont/Chicago O’Hare Hotel.

On Tuesday, February 24th, ICHA will meet with Bishop Paprocki and healthcare and social service representatives in the Springfield Diocese to begin the process of building a coordinated healthcare care plan to keep people healthy and reduce the rates of readmissions.

On Thursday, February 26th, ICHA will co-host their third Webinar with Loyola School of Law. The topic will be will a discussion on the structural changes needed to compete in today’s healthcare marketplace. The presenters will be Jeannie Frey, Chief Legal Affairs Officer, Presence Health, and Larry Singer, Professor of Law at Loyola School of Law.

ADVOCACY UPDATE

With the new Republican Congress in Washington and a new Republican governor in Illinois, ICHA’s Executive Director is waiting until after the New Year to determine what issue may arise legislatively both at the federal and state levels.
On the state level, ICHA will be watching closely to see if there is any activity on end of life issues (EOL) and at the federal level, we will be following proposed changes in the Affordable Care Act and immigration.

MISSION EDUCATION

ICHA conducted a webinar in collaboration with Loyola Law School on Wednesday, November 5th. The topic was Ministerial Positions. Speakers included Larry Singer (Loyola Law School), Fr. William Grogan, Jim Geoly (ICHA Attorney) and Theresa Rutherford (CEO, St. Anthony’s Hospital in Effingham). A recording of the webinar was sent to all members of ICHA.

ICHA is also working with CCI and others to update and distribute “A Catholic Perspective on Advance Directives”.

As an update on ICHA’s Chaplaincy Education Program with the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC), ICHA continues to register participants. To date, 143 persons registered for the course; 87 have completed it.
ICHA FINANCES

ICHA continues to operate under a balanced budget and ICHA has collected all of its FY 14-15 dues (Two hospitals have not paid their dues and they will be written off as bad debt). ICHA has received the final audit, from the firm Hochfelder & Weber, and has shared it with the Finance Committee and the Board of Directors.

CONCLUSION

Thank you for all you do on behalf of the ministry. We continue to look for better ways to serve you and are always open to new ideas. If ICHA may assist you in any way, please contact me anytime at pcacchione@il-cha.org.

 

FORTNIGHT FOR FREEDOM: OP-ED

We are leaders of Catholic organizations dedicated to educating, healing, comforting, feeding, and caring for all. The love of Christ compels us to do this.

We are public in our ministry and yet we are also religious. Our services flow from our Catholic character, mission and values, and they benefit many – Catholic and non-Catholic alike.

We are lending our voice to an upcoming nationwide call for religious freedom. This “Fortnight for Freedom” beginning on June 21 will spotlight the federal government’s recent mandate from the Department of Health and Human Services. This mandate ignores the First Amendment right of the free exercise of religion.

The mandate requires that an entity meet certain criteria if it is to be deemed religious: The purpose of the organization is to indoctrinate its religious values; it must primarily employ individuals of its faith; and it must primarily serve people of its faith. We would not qualify as “religious” under these terms – and neither would the works of Jesus or Mother Teresa.

The word “Catholic” means universal and comprehensive, as is the mission of the Catholic Church. We serve, feed, and care for anyone who comes to our door. We employ anyone who is qualified. That is our definition of “religious.”

Our faith goes beyond the sanctuary of the local Catholic Church. It is found at the bedsides of our nursing homes and hospitals, in the classrooms of our universities and schools, and in the soup kitchens of our Catholic Charities.

The words of Richard Garnett, a law professor at the University of Notre Dame, perhaps sum it up best. “Religious institutions . . . are trying to avoid being conscripted by the government into acting in a way that would be inconsistent with their character, mission, and values.”

Americans have a long-standing tradition of upholding religious freedom. Please visit www.ilcatholic.org and join us in this “Fortnight for Freedom.”

ICHA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT – July, 2014

RECENT ACTIVITIES

During the second quarter of 2014, ICHA’s Executive Director continued to meet individually with leadership, and is responding to various challenges facing Catholic healthcare in Illinois. These challenges include implementing same sex marriage benefits and cooperation issues around Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and Accountable Care Entities (ACEs).

ICHA’s Executive Director continues his travels throughout the state, meeting personally with Sponsors, Bishops, Board members and CEOs. He met with the Board of Directors on June 2nd by conference call and individually with Board Chair, Brother Tom Keusenkothen on June 9th in St. Louis.

In April, ICHA’s Executive Director planned and hosted a webinar with Loyola University’s law school on April 30th to discuss cooperation (ERD Part 6) and Cardinal Mueller’s recent memo and 17 principles on cooperation. The speakers were Fr. Grogan, Larry Singer, Jack Gallagher and Sr. Terry Maltby.

In May, ICHA hosted a meeting of the Mission Leaders on May 13th in Mokena, IL. The speakers included Jack Gallagher on the future of Catholic healthcare and ICHA’s legal counsel, Jim Geoly, on ministerial positions.

In June, ICHA hosted a meeting of the Ethicists/Healthcare Vicars on June 17th at the University Club in Chicago. The morning session was a discussion of ministerial positions and the afternoon was a conversation with representatives of the ACLU concerning the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs). The outcome from the frank conversation was very positive. One of the ACLU representatives responded after the meeting by writing:

“Please accept again my thanks for inviting me and Lorie to join your meeting yesterday. As I said, I was deeply moved — by your openness, and by the respect the invitation accorded us. And I very much appreciated the conversation. I learned. We may not have ended the meeting seeing eye to eye on everything, but I trust we all ended the conversation having a greater understanding of one another and an openness to be in touch about issues going forward.”

The other ACLU participant responded by writing:

“I just wanted to second Louise’s remarks. I so very much appreciated being included. It was a fascinating and edifying experience. Please extend my thanks to your colleagues.”

The ICHA Executive Director has also been speaking with all the Bishops by phone or in person during the month of June, and met with the leadership team of Presence Health on June 18th in Chicago.

2014 UPCOMING MEETINGS

ICHA will be cosponsoring an ethics conference with Loyola’s Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics and the Catholic Health Association (CHA) on October 9-10 in Chicago.

ICHA will be holding their Annual Meeting on October 23rd at the Rosemont Hilton in Rosemont, IL.

 

ADVOCACY UPDATE

With regard to the proposed federal regulations mandating coverage for contraception and sterilization, ICHA’s Executive Director is pleased to report that the Supreme Court, on June 30, ruled that corporations can hold religious objections that allow them to opt out of the new health law requirement that they cover contraceptives for women. Although this case doesn’t directly mention religious organizations, it bodes well for ICHA’s members. ICHA will continue to monitor this and report on any further development.

MISSION EDUCATION

As an update on ICHA’s Chaplaincy Education Program with the National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC), ICHA continues to register participants. To date, 135 persons registered for the course; 87 have completed it.

ICHA FINANCES

ICHA continues to operate under a balanced budget. ICHA recently developed their FY 14-15 budget which was recommend unanimously by the Finance Committee and approved by the Board on March 27th. For the third straight year, ICHA dues will be frozen for the upcoming fiscal year. Invoices for the FY 14-15 dues will go out on July 1st.

CONCLUSION

Thank you for all you do on behalf of the ministry. We continue to look for better ways to serve you and are always open to new ideas. If ICHA may assist you in any way, please contact me anytime at pcacchione@il-cha.org.