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5 fast facts on New York’s health equity impact assessment

health equity impact assessment

As of June 22, 2023, New York state hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers are among the New York Article 28 facilities that must file Health Equity Impact Assessment documentation when submitting a Certificate of Need application.

The goal of this change is to “provide information on whether a proposed project impacts the delivery of or access to services for the service area, particularly medically underserved groups,” according to the New York State Department of Health.

To help you better understand the CON HEIA requirement and its impact, we put together five fast facts to get you up to speed and ready to tackle the new requirement.

Multiple facilities are subject to the new requirement

Under the new requirement, the following New York state Article 28 facilities must complete an HEIA requirement criteria form to determine whether they are subject to the new equity assessment:

  • hospitals;
  • ambulatory surgery centers;
  • nursing homes;
  • select diagnostic and treatment centers; and
  • midwifery birthing centers.

1. HEIA guidelines apply to five scenarios

The HEIA requirement applies to CON applications involving new construction or equipment, a new facility operator, a new facility owner as the result of merger or consolidation, a facility acquisition and an updated operating certificate.

2. Four guidelines govern the HEIA requirement

The proposed project impact changes can impact patient access to care, particularly in underserved areas and among populations that are already disadvantaged. Access, in turn, impacts health equity. HEIA requirement criteria address whether a facility’s CON project will:

  • eliminate services or care;
  • reduce by 10% or greater the number of certified beds, certified services or operating hours;
  • expand or add to the number of certified beds, certified services or operating hours by 10% or more; and/or
  • change the location of service or care.

3. HEIA CON submissions must include six documents

If a facility answers yes to just one of the above scenarios, it must submit the following HEIA documents with its CON application:

  • HEIA requirement criteria form: Determines if an HEIA is required;
  • HEIA conflict-of-interest form: Affirms that there is no COI with the entity that performs the equity assessment;
  • HEIA template: Describes the project scope, impact, and mitigation and monitoring plans; and
  • HEIA data tables: Define demographics that facilities must report on impacted populations, e.g., sex, age, race, and insurance and disability status.
  • a full, redacted version of its CON application, which will be shared publicly; and
  • an assessment contract.

4. Facilities must contract with an independent third party to conduct the HEIA

An independent entity must conduct the HEIA. A qualified entity, per the HEIA conflict-of-interest form, has “demonstrated expertise and experience in the study of health equity, anti-racism, and community and stakeholder engagement” and “preferred expertise and experience in the study of health care access or delivery of health care services.”

The entity must be able to produce an HEIA assessment that includes whether and how “a facility’s proposed project will impact access to and delivery of health care services, particularly for members of medically underserved groups.”

5. It takes time to adjust to new compliance requirements

New processes like completing a CON HEIA have a learning curve. It’s normal that New York state Article 28 facilities will need some time to adjust. Despite this, they don’t have to do it alone. There is external help available to better understand and meet these new requirements.

DataGen can help you get more information on CON HEIA requirements, the assessment and the data analysis process. Schedule a time to speak with us today and learn the ways we can support you through this process.

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