The Health Care Cost
Review Authority (HCCRA) was created by the Legislature in 1983 as an
autonomous agency within state government.
The HCCRA became known as the West Virginia Health Care Authority
(WVHCA) in 1997. The WVHCA’s mission is
to collect information on health care costs, develop a system of cost control
and ensure accessibility to appropriate acute care services.
The West Virginia Legislature during 2016 and 2017
passed legislation which resulted in significant changes to the agency. Those changes included the elimination of the
salaried board of directors, elimination of rate review, elimination of the
authority to fund rural health grants, as well as significant changes to the
Certificate of Need Program. Additionally,
the legislation eliminated the autonomy of the agency and placed it under the
direction of the Department of Health and Human Resources. The funding for the agency (which comes from
an assessment) was reduced by fifty percent.
With the elimination of many functions of the WVHCA as well as the
reduced funding, staffing at the agency was significantly reduced.
These functions remain after the passage of House
Bills 2459 and 117, and Senate Bill 68, include:
of Need which helps to prevent
the unnecessary duplication of reviewable services and to contain or reduce
increases in the cost of delivering reviewable services by determining, prior
to the development of the service whether the service is needed in the service
Financial Disclosure which collects
required financial documents from facilities including financial, operational
and utilization information. Information
is collected from hospitals, behavioral health centers, primary care centers,
home health agencies, renal dialysis centers and ambulatory surgery
centers. The collection of financial
disclosure documents supports the CON program by providing necessary data. This data is also available to the public.
which collects health care
data. This data collection function also
supports the Certificate of Need program and allows the agency to engage in
state-wide health planning.
The agency is now under the direction of the
executive director who reports to the Secretary of the Department of Health and
Human Resources. The Board consists of
five members appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the
Senate, who serve part time and without compensation. The role of the board members is primarily
decision-making and adjudicatory for Certificate of Need matters.
The agency continues to house and provide support to
the West Virginia Health Information Network (WVHIN). The WVHIN is a public/private partnership
offering services that enable the secure electronic exchange of patient care
information among health care providers so that they can deliver high-quality
medical care to their patients. The
WVHIN became a non-profit agency in late December 2017.