UPH Government & External Affairs

Iowa Update – August 2021

by | Aug 23, 2021

UnityPoint Health Joins Iowa Lt. Governor Gregg in Updating Rural Leaders on Emergency Medical Services Legislation

UnityPoint Health – Jones Regional Medical Center chief executive officer Eric Briesemeister (photo, right) joined Iowa Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg (photo, left) at the Iowa Rural Development Council’s (IRDC) Iowa Rural Summit to update attendees on 2021 Iowa legislation of impact to rural communities. Eric provided the group of 300 leaders from communities across Iowa with an overview of landmark Emergency Medical Services (EMS) legislation that was passed by the Iowa legislature and signed into law by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds earlier this year. UnityPoint Health supports this legislation and Ashley Thompson, director of government & external affairs for the health system, serves as an executive committee member of the IRDC. 

Governor Reynolds Issues New Public Health Emergency Proclamation

On August 19, the governor issued an updated COVID-19 Proclamation of Disaster Emergency that extends some regulatory relief for an additional 30 days. There are no significant changes that relate to health care or UnityPoint Health is in latest proclamation.

Iowa Redistricting Process Moves Forward

On Monday, August 23 the five-member Iowa Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission met and approved the scheduling of three required public hearings as part of the state’s redistricting process. The meetings will be held virtually on September 20, 21 and 22, and will allow for public comments and input on new legislative and congressional district maps that are scheduled to be released by the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency (LSA) on September 16. Following the public hearings, of which virtual call-in or video options have yet to be announced, the Commission announced its intent to meet on September 23 and plans to have its required report to the Iowa legislature by the end of September. The legislature will then need to convene a special legislative session, likely in October, to review and vote to approve or reject and send back for further edits.

The redistricting process includes redrawing of Iowa’s four Congressional House and 150 state legislative (100 Iowa House and 50 Iowa Senate) districts every ten years.

Mitchell Selected to Serve as New President and CEO of the Iowa Hospital Association

The Iowa Hospital Association Board of Officers and Trustees this month announced the appointment of Christopher (Chris) Mitchell as the association’s next president & CEO. Mitchell will succeed Kirk Norris, who has been IHA’s president & CEO since 2002 and is retiring after 34 years with the association.


For more information about State of Iowa advocacy, legislative, policy and regulatory issues of impact to UnityPoint Health, please contact Ashley Thompson, director of government & external affairs.