May 26, 2021

Around the nation: Senate confirms Brooks-LaSure to lead CMS

Daily Briefing

    The Senate on Tuesday voted 55-44 to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to lead CMS, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from New Jersey, the District of Columbia, and West Virginia.

    • Washington, D.C.: The Senate on Tuesday voted 55-44 to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to lead CMS, where she will be charged with overseeing Medicare, Medicaid, and key pieces of the Affordable Care Act, among other responsibilities. Brooks-LaSure has previously served as deputy director for policy at CMS' Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, as well as director of coverage policy at HHS (King, Fierce Healthcare, 5/25; Weiland/Sanger-Katz, New York Times, 5/25; Alonso-Zaldivar, AP News, 5/25; Hellman, Modern Healthcare, 2/25).
    • New Jersey: Gov. Phil Murphy (D) on Monday announced that New Jersey will lift its mask mandate effective Friday. Businesses will still be permitted to require customers to wear masks, and masks will still be required in certain settings, such as health care facilities, schools, child care centers, and on public transportation. Murphy also said the state will lift social distancing requirements in a number of indoor venues, including restaurants, retail stores, churches, and gyms (Sutton, Politico, 5/24; Oshin, The Hill, 5/24).
    • West Virginia: Mountain Health Network last week announced that Mike Mullins, the health system's CEO, has left his role to pursue other opportunities. Mullins had been CEO since March 2019. Paul English Smith will serve as interim CEO of the health system and as president of Cabell Huntington Hospital and St. Mary's Medical Center. Smith has served as the health system's general counsel for the past two years and previously served as VP and general counsel for Cabell Huntington Hospital (Gooch, Becker's Hospital Review, 5/21).
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