CVS Health and Uber Health are partnering to offer free transportation to access medical care and other services, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Alaska, California, North Carolina, and Rhode Island.
- Alaska: The office of Gov. Mike Dunleavy (R) on Thursday announced that he joined Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's (R) lawsuit to block the Biden administration and the Department of Defense from imposing a vaccine mandate on the National Guard. According to the lawsuit, the federal government should not have authority over national guardsmen since they are serving the state. "There has long been a clear and distinct line between when National Guardsmen are governed by state authority and when they are governed by federal authority. When National Guardsmen are serving the State, the federal government has no command authority," the lawsuit states. (Saric, Axios, 1/27)
- North Carolina: Novant Health will give full-time workers either an additional week of paid vacation, or the cash equivalent, to reward them for working through the Covid-19 pandemic. Although this move follows a nationwide trend of salary increases, bonuses, and incentives intended to retain health care workers, it may not adequately address the issues causing health care workers to leave their jobs, according to Modern Healthcare. "Like any other health system, we're faced with the same talent shortages [that] exist," said Carman Canales, SVP and chief people officer at Novant. "We want to pay as much attention to keeping our existing talent here, as much as we're paying attention to inviting others to join us." (Gillespie, Modern Healthcare, 1/27)
- Rhode Island/California: CVS Health and Uber Health have joined forces on a program that will offer free ride-sharing services to help improve access to medical care. The program will pilot in Atlanta; Hartford, Conn.; and Columbus, Ohio, then expand to additional areas after the initial launch. "We've long known that access to reliable transportation can help address critical gaps in care that often disproportionately affect vulnerable communities," said Caitlin Donovan, global head of Uber Health. "With the past two years of the pandemic only further highlighting today's health inequities, it's more important than ever for communities to have the tools they need to bridge care gaps and achieve better patient and population health outcomes." (Wicklund, HealthLeaders Media, 1/27)