MACHC
Weekly E-Blast:  
Voicing the latest news on Communities in Need
In This Issue

Next Enrollment Period starts
 November 15, 2014!!!
Have news to share with us? Want to be featured on our next E-Digest? Want to read about something in particular? Please email us at aneeqa@machc.com. 

Let's Stay Connected
    
May 27, 2014 
MACHC SPOTLIGHT
Congratulations Charles Wilt from Mountain Laurel Medicaid Center on his CHC Certification!

Mountain Laurel Medical Center and the Compliance Certification Board (CCB) announced that Charles Wilt has successfully completed the Certified in Healthcare Compliance Examination, thus earning the "CHC" designation.
The CHC Examination, available locally five days a week, was released June 26, 2000. Since that date, over 3,000 individuals have earned this professional credential.
Healthcare compliance is a relatively new industry, born out of the government's crackdown on Medicare fraud. Compliance professionals come from a variety of backgrounds including coding, medical records, nursing, medical practice, law and government. Regardless of background, compliance professionals are tasked with assuring that health care providers follow federal, state and local regulations that govern the delivery of healthcare.
CCB President Debbie Troklus, noted, "The United States government constantly updates the laws and regulations surrounding Medicare to ensure proper billing and to eliminate fraud. These new regulations demand professionals who both understand the new regulations and how to implement programs to ensure compliance within their companies."
Founded by the Health Care Compliance Association in 1998, the Compliance Certification Board exists to develop criteria for the determination of competence in the practice of healthcare compliance at a variety of levels and to recognize individuals meeting these criteria.
Charles joined Mountain Laurel Medical Center in 2010, and is currently holding the Chief Compliance Officer position. He is a graduate of Frostburg State University and The George Washington University, holding a Graduate Certificate in Healthcare Corporate Compliance. He will receive his Master's in Health Administration in 2015.
His current role is to assess healthcare risks from a legal perspective, including HIPAA regulations, tax laws and employment laws. He carries a vast knowledge of the ever-changing healthcare environment, leaving Mountain Laurel Medical Center poised for growth in the community.
As a community health center, Mountain Laurel provides its patients and area residents with extraordinary care and personal support services. Mountain Laurel is known for its experienced and talented providers who give care to persons of all ages, to those insured and uninsured. Mountain Laurel is located at 1027 Memorial Drive, in Oakland, MD.





















MACHC Website Under Construction..... 

New Updates coming this SUMMER 

Technical Assistance Request Form 
---to be submitted prior to receiving any TA from MACHC---

Join the Access is the Answer Campaign and advocate for CHC Funding!

Health Centers are facing an unprecedented threat and a unique opportunity in 2014. Like every year, Health Centers will have to fight to secure annual funding from Washington. But unlike any year in Health Center history, this year we face a looming Health Center funding cliff - a potential 70% reduction in Health Center program funding scheduled to take effect in 2016. As Health Center Advocates we will also have to make sure that programs, like Medicaid, that are essential to our survival remain intact and strong in the face of efforts to save money.

These are threats to Health Centers AND to the more than 22 million patients Health Centers currently serve and the millions more that Health Centers will need to grow to serve in our communities. Your advocacy through the Access is the Answer campaign is essential if we are to ensure that Health Centers will be there for everyone who needs access to health care.

What can YOU do?

To make the Access is the Answer campaign a success, commit to taking 3 easy action steps:

Number 1: Sign the Access is the Answer petition. 

Number 2: Work with your Health Center leadership to collect Access is the Answer support letters from local elected officials

Number 3:  Work with your Health Center leadership to collect community support letters. 

The value of advocacy:

All politics is local. Congress and the President do really pay attention to the voices of those back home in the community. That means the most effective advocacy has to come from YOU back home.

The Access is the Answer Campaign will be asking Advocates to weigh in on many issues as the campaign goes forward, but if YOU and tens of thousands of Advocates take the 3 steps, we will be laying the foundation for success in a fight neither Health Centers nor our patients can afford to lose. Thanks for joining the Access is the Answer campaign and building the power of Health Center Advocacy.  

MACHC Happenings
MACHC EVENTS & WEBINARS
OTHER EVENTS & WEBINARS
 (1) Updates in Diabetes Care and Self-Management   
May 29th, 2014 12:30 PM -1:30 PM

Diabetes is a serious disease and can lead to severe side effects.  Diabetes is a major cause of stroke, and is a leading cause of kidney failure, non-traumatic lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the United States.  In this presentation, you will review the newest guidelines in diabetes management.
Target Audience:  Physicians, Nurse Practitioners and Nurses  

Presenter:  Michele McBride RN, BSN CDE is both an inpatient diabetes educator and the Coordinator of the Outpatient Diabetes Education Program for Adventist Healthcare.  Michele has over 30 years experience in Nursing, the last 7 years in diabetes Education.  She is the mother of a son with type 1 diabetes.  

 

(2) Outreach Team Conference Call

When: Friday, May 30, 2014

11 a.m. - 12 p.m.

1-866-740-1260 Access Code: 4319483

Target Audience: Outreach staff members

Discuss latest Outreach and Enrollment resources, best practices, trends and issues. These issues are presented on HRSA reports and other platforms to find resolutionsIn this presentation, you will review the newest guidelines in diabetes management.
 

 (3) Transformational Call

When: Tuesday, June 3, 2014

10 a.m. - 11 a.m.

1-866-740-1260 Access Code: 4319483

Target Audience: FQHC Leadership

Discuss latest State news, barriers, trends and issues. These issues are presented on HRSA reports and other platforms to find resolutions.

(4) Emergency Preparedness Table Top Event
When: June 12, 2014, 9:15 am - 2 pm
Where: Maritime Conference Center, MD
Target Audience: At least 2-3 Emergency Preparedness per health center are required to attend as well as DHMH Chairs and Coordinators.
This TTX is an interactive, discussion-based activity focused on a plausible scenario. The TTX will focus on health centers ability to make high-level decisions and use emergency management concepts in response to an event which will result in staffing/supply impacts and difficulty sustaining operational status.  The progressive scenario and corresponding prompts will aid and facilitate the exploration of the health centers understanding of emergency management fundamentals including the National Incident Management Incident (NIMS) and the relationship with their Incident Command System (ICS), the emergency planning process, the role of mutual aid agreements, and emergency public information. Ultimately, the TTX will highlight the need for a networked approach to preparedness and response.

(5) MACHC Board Retreat
When: July 10 - 11th, 2014
Where: TBA
Look out for more details here in the coming weeks.
 
 
(6) SAVE THE DATE
MACHC's Annual Conference
When: Thursday, September 18th - Friday, September 19th, 2014 
Where: Dover Downs Conference Center, Dover, DE
  • (1) Stage 2 Meaningful Use Requirements Focus of May 29 Call
  • One of the upcoming MLN Connects™ National Provider Calls will cover Stage 2 Meaningful Use requirements, reporting options, and the data submission processes for Eligible Professionals (EPs).  Register online for this Thursday, May 29, 1:30 pm - 3 pm, ET call that will cover:

      

    • the differences between Stage 1 and Stage 2 criteria
    • reporting quality measures once to meet multiple reporting requirements
    • the processes for submitting data

    EPs who have completed at least two program years under Stage 1 of Meaningful Use in the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs are required to meet Stage 2 criteria starting in 2014, the first year of Stage 2 implementation. You can email questions in advance to e-measures@mathematica-mpr.com  no later than May 21 to be considered for inclusion in the presentation. 

      


    (2) Maryland Rural Health Association

    Call for Proposals The Call for Proposals is now open. The conference will gather rural health leaders in the public, private, and non-profit sectors to discuss the major issues facing rural Maryland. Past conference attendees have pointed toward the value of illustrating best public health and community level practices as most useful to participants. Additionally, the conference planning committee is hoping to illustrate how recent statewide programs and policies have been implemented or are impacting rural Maryland both in terms of health and the economy. Examples include, but are not limited to the following: behavioral health, CMS Waiver implementation, Community Transformation Grant, the Affordable Care Act, oral health. Every proposal will be given consideration by the Rural Health Conference Planning Committee and presenters will be notified by June 13, 2014. 

    Please submit proposals online at Call For Proposals Due Date May 23, 2014.

    Outline of Information Asked on Online Submittal: Link

     

    (3) Office of Women's Health Quick Health Data Online

    The Office of Women's Health has announced the availability of telephone trainings on their new online information system - Quick Health Data Online.  The system contains data on demographics, mortality, reproductive and maternal health, disease incidence, and access to care at the county level for all states and territories.  It also includes data on prevention, violence, and mental health at the state level.  Where possible the data provided includes race, ethnicity and gender and, if able, age.  It incorporates graphing and mapping features so that the data of interest can be used directly as tables, graphs/chart and maps.  There will be two one-hour trainings per month: a basic training of an overview of the system and mapping and a second training that will provide emphasis on mapping techniques.  To access the calls, use the toll-free number:  1-877-925-6129; passcode, 410171 and go to the Quick Health Data Online website.  

    Quick Health Data Online 101 Trainings:

    • Monday, May 19, 2-3 pm, ET (Basic)
    • Wednesday, May 21, 11-12 pm, ET (Focus on Mapping)
    • Tuesday, June 17, 3-4 pm, ET (Basic)
    • Thursday, June 19, 1-2 pm, ET (Focus on Mapping)

     

    (4) Enroll America's State of Enrollment Conference

    When: June 16th-18th

    Enroll America will be convening their first national conference in Washington DC . This conference will offer trainings, workshops, keynotes, and events to learn and exchange best practices and prepare for the next open enrollment period. Early-bird registration rates expire on Friday, April 11th. Click here for more information.

      

    (5) SAVE - THE - DATE 

    2014 COMMUNITY HEALTH INSTITUTE (CHI) & EXPO at MANCHESTER GRAND HYATT

    AUGUST 23-27, 2014

    REGISTRATION IS NOT YET OPEN!

    Community Health Institute (CHI) & EXPO is THE largest and most important annual gathering of 2000 community health center  managers, clinicians, employees, board members and leaders. Every aspect of the community health center movement is represented and  fully-vested at CHI, making it an excellent networking opportunity. CHI provides essential up-to-date information, training and technical  assistance on the latest community health center challenges, providing professionals in the industry with cutting-edge strategies for community health center success                                       

    Emergency Preparedness Events:

    During the month of June, OP&R and MEMA are co-sponsoring two ICS position-specific awareness trainings, to be held at DHMH Headquarters in Baltimore. Please see below for detailed information and registration links.

    June 3: Incident Command and Operations Section Chief

    DHMH Training and Exercise Project

    ICS Position Specific Awareness Training - Incident Commander and Operations Section Chief

    Course Announcement

    In coordination with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH), the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), Active Learning and Exercise Branch invites you to participate in the ICS Position Specific Awareness Training - Incident Commander and Operations Section Chief training course.

    Date: June 3, 2014

    Time: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

    Location: Lobby Conference Room L-3, 201 W. Preston Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

     Overview: This awareness-level course will provide local- and State-level emergency responders with an introductory understanding of the duties, responsibilities, and the capabilities of an effective Incident Commander (IC) and an effective Operations Section Chief (OSC).

    The IC is responsible for the overall management of the response. The IC directs and/or controls resources by virtue of explicit legal, agency, or delegated authority. The IC is responsible for all aspects of the response and therefore sets priorities and defines the ICS organization for the particular response.

    The OSC activates and supervises organization elements in accordance with the Incident Action Plan (IAP) and directs its execution. The OSC also directs the preparation of Unit operational plans, requests or releases resources makes expedient changes to the IAP, as necessary; and reports such to the IC.  

    Prerequisites: IS-100.b; IS-200.b; IS-700.a; and IS-800.b; (or equivalent)
    Recommended: ICS-300; and ICS-400

    Logistics: Lunch will not be provided.  Attire is business casual or daily uniform.

    Register: Registration closes on June2, 2014.  To register, please click here

    Before registering for the class, students must create an account on the MEMA Learning Management System (LMS) website and obtain a FEMA Student Identification Number (SID). Links to the FEMA SID registration site and the MEMA LMS account registration website are found at the above link.

    For additional assistance, contact Reed Correll at reed.correll@maryland.gov



    June 30: Incident Command and Planning Section Chief

    DHMH Training and Exercise Project

    ICS Position Specific Awareness Training - Incident Commander and Planning Section Chief

    Course Announcement

    In coordination with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH), the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), Active Learning and Exercise Branch invites you to participate in the ICS Position Specific Awareness Training - Incident Commander and Planning Section Chief training course. This course is awareness-level only.

    Date: June 30, 2014

    Time: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

    Location: Lobby Conference Room L-3, 201 W. Preston Street, Baltimore, MD 21201

    Overview: This awareness-level course will provide local- and State-level emergency responders with an introductory understanding of the duties, responsibilities, and the capabilities of an effective Incident Commander (IC) and an effective Planning Section Chief (PSC). 

    The IC is responsible for the overall management of the response. The IC directs and/or controls resources by virtue of explicit legal, agency, or delegated authority. The IC is responsible for all aspects of the response and therefore sets priorities and defines the ICS organization for the particular response.  

    The PSC is responsible for the collection, evaluation, dissemination and use of information about the development of the incident and the status of resources. 

    Prerequisites: IS-100.b; IS-200.b; IS-700.a; and IS-800.b; (or equivalent)
    Recommended: ICS-300; and ICS-400

    Logistics: Lunch will not be provided.  Attire is business casual or daily uniform.

    Register: Registration closes on June29, 2014.  To register, please click here.

    Before registering for the class, students must create an account on the MEMA Learning Management System (LMS) website and obtain a FEMA Student Identification Number (SID). Links to the FEMA SID registration site and the MEMA LMS account registration website are found at the above link.

    For additional assistance, contact Reed Correll at reed.correll@maryland.gov



    *These are excellent training opportunities for those who may need to brush up on their skills or gain fresh knowledge and insight into the Incident Command System.
    Policy, Advocacy and Legislation
    National News
    FYI - in a notice of proposed rulemaking, CMS plans to extend Stage 2 MU an additional year (through 2016) and put off Stage 3 until 2017.  They are also allowing providers to use 2011 certified EHR technology to attest this year, relaxing the requirement that all providers attest using 2014 technology this year.  The end result is more time to upgrade and meet Stage 2 requirements. See more information copied below and the hyperlink above.
    Below you will find the proper FTCA deemed entity notice language for a health center's website:  This health center is a Health Center Program grantee under 42 U.S.C. 254b, and a deemed Public Health Service employee under 42 U.S.C. 233(g)-(n). 

     

     

     

    ICD-10 Implementation Delay 

    The Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (PAMA) (Pub. L. No. 113-93) was enacted, which said that the Secretary may not adopt ICD-10 prior to October 1, 2015. HHS expects to release an interim final rule in the near future that would require the use of ICD-10 beginning October 1, 2015.  The rule will require HIPAA covered entities to continue to use ICD-9 CM through September 30, 2015. In agreement with PAMA, the Uniform Data System (UDS) reporting requirements will follow the revised ICD-10 implementation schedule. 

    Despite requirements that health insurance providers participating in insurance exchanges include pediatric dental coverage, reports show that many parents opted not to purchase that coverage.   

    Additional Support for Health Care Innovation  HHS announced twelve prospective recipients receiving as much as $110 million in combined funding to test innovative models designed to deliver better care outcomes and lower costs. 
    HHS also announced a second round of funding under the State Innovation Models initiative to provide states with an opportunity to apply for funding to design and test multi-payer payment and delivery models that seek to deliver high-quality health care and improve health system performance.

    Alliance for health reform briefing: Health centers at the launch of coverage expansion

    As health centers across the country experience increased patient volumes as a result of the Affordable Care Act, researchers are beginning to more closely examine their ability to ensure access, while at the same time manage dramatic transformation in health care delivery models.

    Confirmation Process Begins for HHS Secretary Nominee  

    The confirmation process for President Obama's choice for the next Secretary of Health & Human Services (HHS) began last week. Sylvia Mathews Burwell, the current Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), appeared before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) on May 8 for the first of two Senate confirmation hearings. Burwell faced few tough questions during the two-hour hearing, with the focus primarily on concerns around implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In an exchange with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Burwell expressed her support for Community Health Centers    and her commitment that the administration would work with Congress on a solution to the looming funding cliff that faces the Health Center Program.  Read more at NACHC's  Health Centers on the Hill.
    AHRQ has published a toolkit to help hospitals control and prevent Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase (KPC), a highly dangerous, antibiotic-resistant germ. KPC is sometimes referred to as a "superbug" because it is hard to kill and resists most antibiotics. KPC is a type of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, or CRE, a family of germs that are difficult to treat because they have high levels of resistance to antibiotics. AHRQ funded leading KPC researchers to develop the toolkit, which hospitals can use to control and prevent KPC outbreaks in their facilities. AHRQ's toolkit, "Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) Control and Prevention Toolkit," helps organizations implement guidelines from the HHS' Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which define what health care organizations should do to prevent KPC.
    As complex, high-tech testing continues to be favored over physical examinations, there is growing concern that many health care providers lack the skills needed to conduct routine physical examinations that may be more effective in diagnosing various ailments. 
    Calling for better integration of behavioral health and primary care, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force reports that primary care providers can do a lot to identify mental illness and prevent suicides.  "It's really important to understand that asking someone if they're thinking about suicide is not going to make them suicidal," Harkavy-Friedman says. "If anything it's going to make them feel better, because they don't have to go it alone. That's why primary care providers asking about it is an important step, regardless of if they're mandated to ask every single person."
    Community Health Centers were the focus of a recent Capitol Hill briefing launched by the Alliance for Health Reform. The topic was the challenges and opportunities of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The briefing "Health Centers at the Launch of the Coverage Expansion" included panelists: Michelle Proser, NACHC 's Research Director;  Jordan Valley Health Center (Springfield, MO) President Brooks Miller; Heart City Health Center (Elkhart, IN) CEO Vernita Todd and Leighton Ku, Director of the Center for Health Policy Research at George Washington University.

    The event revealed new findings from the Commonwealth Fund's 2013 Survey of FQHCs. Some highlights include:

    • Health centers anticipated a shortage of workforce to meet the needs of the expected influx of newly covered patients. This included a shortage of physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants. However, the Commonwealth Fund report noted that this is not a new concern for health centers and a recent report by NACHC showed 62 million people have little or no access to primary care.
    • Health centers have a hard time finding bilingual providers and those in rural areas have a harder time recruiting bilingual staff over those in urban settings.
    • Health centers have, and continue to prepare for, health system changes and the influx of new patients, including integrating new behavioral health, hiring new clinical staff and increasing IT capacity. 93 percent of health centers surveyed now have an EHR system, an increase of 133 percent from 2009.

    The panelists all underscored the critical need for access to care.

    "Insurance coverage is not enough to guarantee access to care. There will always be uninsured patients," said  Michelle Proser.

    New Data About Health Center Quality of Care

    new study in Health Services Research shows that patients, particularly those who do not have health insurance and receive care at Community Health Centers, have fewer hospitalizations.  They also receive similar or a better quality of preventive care compared to similar patients of non-health center primary care providers.

    "These findings suggest that federally funded health centers could be a more efficient system of primary care especially for the uninsured," said Neda Laiteerapong, M.D., the study's lead author and assistant professor of medicine at University of Chicago. "The fact that patients in our study had fewer office visits and received similar or better quality of care could suggest that these centers do more preventive care per visit."
    Researchers looked at data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey between 2004 and 2008 for the study.  They analyzed data from a sample of adult patients who visited a health center over a two year period of time and compared it to the outcomes of non-health center patients.   In addition to fewer hospital visits, health center patients were also more likely to have received dietary advice and breast cancer screening.
    Georges C. Benjamin, M.D., executive director of the American Public Health Association (APHA), Washington D.C., also responded to the study saying "It verifies that if you have a coordinated care model, you can have better outcomes most of the time-this is a good example of where health reform is going."  He also added, "We know only 10 percent of primary care wellness is about going to the doctor's office," he said. "It's the behavioral things that matter and federally-funded clinics understand that very well
    Also, since we're talking about quality of care, it's worth noting again that a previous study by  the Stanford University School of Medicine and the University of California-San Francisco, (July 2012)  found that health centers demonstrated equal or better quality performance than private practices on ambulatory quality measures, despite serving patients with more chronic disease and socieoeconomic complexity.
    Federal Health-Care Subsidies May Be Too High Or Too Low For More Than 1 Million Americans
    The government may be paying incorrect subsidies to more than 1 million Americans for their health plans in the new federal insurance marketplace and has been unable so far to fix the errors, according to internal documents and three people familiar with the situation. The problem means that potentially hundreds of thousands of people are receiving bigger subsidies than they deserve. They are part of a large group of Americans who listed incomes on their insurance applications that differ significantly - either too low or too high - from those on file with the Internal Revenue Service

    Blog Details Experience of FQHC-Only ACO

    A new blog post describes the experience of Family Health Accountable Care Organization (ACO), an ACO that is unique in that it is comprised entirely of Community Health Centers  . Like other ACOs, Family Health ACO is sailing in uncharted waters and faces significant challenges in better understanding patient utilization patterns, identifying high-risk patients, and implementing care coordination strategies. The blog describes how the ACO partnership is helping to further strengthen the ties between the participating health centers and their communities and the challenges it is attempting to address.

    NEW Fact Sheet on Health Centers and Uninsured by NACHC

    NACHC has released a new fact sheet, Health Centers and the Uninsured: Improving Access to Care and Health Outcomes that highlights health centers' essential role in providing a source of primary and preventive care for the uninsured and underinsured, who will rely on health centers more heavily for their care needs even after health reform expansion

    State News
    DELAWARE

    Congratulations La Red Health Center on all their successful Outreach efforts thus far!

      

    The following are the outreach efforts made by the Health Ambassadors during the first quarter of 2014.

    JANUARY

     

    • LRHC Coat Drive
    • Elizabeth Cornish Landing Apt (Bridgeville) 
    • Assisted with Mobile Food Pantry at Rehoboth 
    • Temple of Praise (Laurel)
    • Presentations at:
      • Mt.Calvary AME Church/Mobile Food Pantry (Seaford) 
      • Presentation at DAPI Action
      • Presentation at Mobile Food Pantry at Elizabeth 
    • ESL Class Presentations at:
      •  Milford Reformation Church
      • Lincoln Methodist Church
    • Table set up at Milford Catholic Church with hand-outs given out.

    FEBRUARY  

     

    • Del Tech Information Table: Give a Kid a Smile Day 
    • First State Community Action Health Fair 
    • Healing Heart" Laurel Wesleyan Church
    • Heart of Good Health" Laurel High School
    • Mobile Pantry set up at:
      • Presentation at Elizabeth Cornish Landing, Bridgeville
      • Harvest Ministries,  Delmar 
    • Table Display set up  for parents:
      • Delaware Early Childhood Center in Harrington 
      • Milford Early Childhood Center in Milford 

     

    March

    • Mexican Consulate at Dagsboro Church of God
    • Family Fun Night at Boys and Girls club, Seaford Theme: Carnival Night 7pm-9pm
    • Informational Table outside Seaford Wal-Mart 9am-1pm
    • Breast Feeding Conference ( Dover)
    • ACA speech given and table at Harbour Lights Cheer Center (Lewes)
    • DCUSA parent meet and greet event (Ellendale)
    • Table set up at Milton public library Expo   
    • Vida healthy lifestyle and breast health forum  
    • Participated in the following Health Fairs:
      • St. John's Health Fair in Millsboro, De 
      • Beebe Health Fair at Georgetown Middle School 
      • Beebe Health Fair at Georgetown Middle School 
      • Delaware State University Health Fair (Dover/ targeting all 3 counties)  
      • Milton Elementary School Health Fair
    • Participated in Kick Butts Day at:
      • Oak Orchard Boys & Girls Club (Millsboro)
      • Boys and Girls Club (Georgetown) 

    Community Impact

    A Patient Success Story!

     

    Maria came to La Red Health Center during the last week of December 2013 with a breast mass.  Days later, a "Promotora" drove her  to a specialist for testing which led to a diagnoses of breast cancer and the start of a treatment plan. Per Maria, the short time between her initial appointment and treatment was overwhelming  but, having  the "Promotoras"/Outreach staff by her side made her feel as if she was not going through it alone, especially since it was just her and her husband in Delaware with no other family nearby. 

     

    Maria shared how grateful she was that our staff picked her up from home and drove her to multiple appointments and always offered a warm smile and caring touch.  She said that her husband could go to work at peace knowing LRHC's staff would takes care of her. Maria's voice was full of emotion when she told us that her husband would have been fired if he had to take time off from work to drive her to the appointments.

     

    For Maria, what started from finding a mass on her breast, and led to tests and appointments with hematologists, surgeons, and chemotherapists  turned into an opportunity to meet people that really cared for their patients. "I'm a new patient at LRHC and you have done so much to help me as I go through such a difficult situation.  I know it is your job to transport, interpret and hold my hand  when I need it,  but you have become my support group at the doctor's office, during chemo treatments and while I am in the van going to and from my appointments. My husband and I just wanted to say, thanks from the bottom of our hearts. We could not do  this without you!"

     

    MARYLAND

     The Maryland Open Meetings Compliance Board has found that the board that oversees Maryland's health exchange repeatedly violated a law requiring full explanations for closed meetings.

    The Washington Post reports that opinion released Tuesday states the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange Board of Trustees didn't fully disclose and document reasons for confidentiality. The board has promised to change.

    Kent County News journalist Craig O'Donnell filed complaints, saying the board held nearly 50 closed meetings and often didn't follow the law.

    The compliance board examined meetings of interest, including a Sunday conference call where members voted to fire the company hired to build the exchange's website. The board says notice of the meeting was inadequate and the law isn't clear on whether the vote behind closed doors was legal. 

    Finance & Business
    States To Decide On Key Part Of Small-Business Health Exchanges
    The Obama administration said Friday it would let states decide whether to implement a key part of the health law's small-business exchanges next year, extending an earlier delay. The Department of Health and Human Services said in rules released Friday that it would be up to state insurance commissioners to decide whether employees at small businesses using the health-insurance exchanges could choose from a range of plans or be limited to just one selected by their employer 
     
    As federal officials continue to examine health care spending in the U.S., it appears one easy fix is to reduce the use of "low-value" services, which are often unnecessary. 
     
    Time and Effort Reporting: Burdens and Risks for Health Centers 
    Tuesday, June 3, 2014 
    Registration cutoff June 1 

    Click here for more information and to register.

      

    Interested in registering for the entire series?  Click here to register for the all 4 webinars at a discounted price!

    The
    Latest News on ACA

    The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) has

    published guidance outlining three new special enrollment periods (SEPs) for the federal marketplace and two new hardship exemptions, which apply to both the federal marketplace and state marketplaces:


    New Special Enrollment Periods:

    • Individuals Eligible for or Enrolled in COBRA 
    • Individuals Whose Individual Market Plans are Renewing Outside of Open Enrollment
    • AmeriCorps/VISTA/National Civilian Community Corps Members

    New Hardship Exemptions:

    • Persons who obtained coverage that was effective as of May 1, 2014
      AmeriCorps/VISTA/National Civilian Community Corps Members 

    HHS/IRS Webinars: Premium Tax Credits and Shared Responsibility Payments

    The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) in partnership with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will be offering two webinar presentations:

    • Premium Tax Credits and Changes in Circumstances: Wednesday, June 11, 2:00 pm, ET
    • Shared Responsibility Payments: Wednesday, July 9, 2:00 pm, ET
    Registration information will be shared when available. 
     
     
    Outreach and Enrollment (O/E) Resources -People may still enroll in a private health plan through the Marketplace only if they qualify for a special enrollment period. Use the following resources to assist in O/E efforts: 

    In the fourteenth in the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' "Beyond the Basics" series of webinars titled "Beyond the Basics of Exemptions, Penalties and Special Enrollment Periods," we focus on triggers and timing for special enrollment periods, how people can qualify for exemptions from the individual responsibility requirement, and how the penalties for not having coverage are calculated.  We review information from past webinars as well as address new developments and updates.

     

     

    For other helpful outreach and enrollment resources, please click here

    For General FAQs on HRSA Health Center Outreach and Enrollment Assistance Supplemental Funding, click here

    Transformational Team Talk & Outreach Upates

    MACHC's ACA- Moving Forward Webinar

    To access the webinar slides, click here 
    For the webinar recording, please email Aneeqa Chowdhury at aneeqa@machc.com

    A Message From MARYLAND HEALTH EXCHANGE:
    ACSE Status Meeting

    When

    Tue May 27, 2014 10am - 11am Eastern Time

    Where

    Conference Call 877-431-1883 code 370 252 4147 (map)

    Who

    *

    Leslie Lyles Smith -DHMH- - organizer

    *

    Debbie Ruppert -DHMH-

    *

    Tia Witherspoon -DHMH-

    *

    Jody Hartzell -DHMH-

     
    All MHBE efforts concentrated towards the transition to Connecticut system. The ACSE Conference Call will provide latest updates relative to the changes thus far and future plans.

     

     

    The MHBE Call Center Hours of Operation & Holiday Closings for the period of May 1, 2014 through September 30, 2014 will be as follows:

     

    Hours of Operation

    Mon - Fri - 8am-6pm

    Sat - 8am - 2pm

    Sun - CLOSED

     

    Holiday Closings

    Memorial Day - May 26

    Independence Day - July 4

    Labor Day - September 1

     

    Grants & Funding Opportunities

    USDA Announces Funding for Advanced Communications Technology in Rural Areas | USDA Newsroom

     

    DLT NOFA:

    Rural Utilities Service

     

    NOTICES

    Funding Availabilities ,

    29399-29405 [2014-11700]

    [PDF]

    DLT Resources, including the 2014 Grant Application Guide, Grant Toolkit, FAQs and much more:

     

    USDA Rural Development- DLT Resources

    Please direct any questions to: The Loan Origination and Approval staff is available to answer questions about the application process and program requirements. If you have questions, the time to contact us with those questions is before you submit the application. Contact us at:  

    Phone: 202-690-4493  Email: dltinfo@wdc.usda.gov  

     
    HRSA:
    Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health:Improving Maternal Health and Safety (HRSA-14-134)

    Apply By: Mon, 16 Jun 2014 

    Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program States/Territories Part B Supplemental Grant Program (HRSA-14-048)
    Apply By: Wed, 28 May 2014 
     
    Application Deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis
    Funding for hunger prevention, self-sufficiency, healthcare, and education to those who are underserved. Pennsylvania is one of the eligible states.
     
    Application Deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis
    Provides seed funding to emerging nonprofits, or to new projects of established organizations in the areas of education; environment; health and human services; and hunger and nutrition. Pennsylvania is one of 13 eligible states.
     
    Application Deadline:  Applications Accepted on an Ongoing Basis
    The Community Response Fund supports organizations, activities, and events that address access to needed oral health care and community resources that improve oral health. Programs that address an immediate response to an urgent issue that impacts access to clinical care, provide short-term access to needed care for the underserved, or sustain organizations experiencing short-term challenges are the focus. A limited number of program concepts that provide longer term solutions or essential services for particularly underserved populations will also be considered. The program will also support Missions of Mercy clinics.
    Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Corner 
    Within multi-payer medical home initiatives, it is critical to develop and implement attribution and/or enrollment methodologies that assign participating patients to the practice most responsible for managing their care. This brief, supported by The Commonwealth Fund, presents key considerations for states when developing assignment models: determining the degree of alignment across payers; establishing a means to collect and distribute patient assignment data; assessing the accuracy of the model; and ensuring sustainability. Key considerations presented in this brief are gleaned from challenges and lessons learned from multi-payer initiatives in Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Rhode Island.
     
    NASHP Meeting: Using Research to Inform Policy Decisions: A Roadmap for State Policymakers - Apply Here 
    With the support of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), NASHP is convening a one-day meeting on August 5, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois to launch our "Roadmap for State Policymakers: A Guide in Using Research to Inform Decision Making". The purpose of the meeting is to help guide state policymakers in the use of the Roadmap and to strategize about how to build support for more engagement on the use of evidence to support policy decision making back in your state. State policymakers who currently use research to inform their work or who would like to incorporate more evidence-based approaches in their work, particularly Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) and Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR), are invited to submit an application to participate in this meeting by June 3, 2014.
     
     

    AHRQ has released a new video series featuring three profiles of health care professionals sharing stories about how they are working in partnership with patients and families to improve the quality of health care services delivered at their facilities. The series, "Frontline Innovators on Providing Patient- and Family-Centered Care," was developed as part of the AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange, an online repository of information where health professionals and researchers can share and learn about evidence-based practices and tools that can be adopted for use within an array of health care settings and populations. Stories highlighted in the videos explain how current and former patients and families advise a hospital on care improvement; how a day-treatment program partners with parents to support and stabilize children with dual psychiatric and chronic disease diagnoses; and how a hospital brings together the expertise of families and geriatric-trained staff to improve outcomes in a separate, seniors-only emergency department setting. 

    Clinical Quality 

    Hospitals are leading the movement to improve the quality of care delivered to U.S. patients, outpacing improvements in other settings, according to two national reports issued by AHRQ on May 15. Three-quarters of hospital quality measures showed significant improvement, compared with 60 percent for home health and nursing home care, and about half for ambulatory settings, according to AHRQ's 2013 National Healthcare Quality Report and National Healthcare Disparities Report. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Partnership for Patients initiative, HHS' Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) quality reporting programs, such as the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting Program and Hospital Outpatient Quality Reporting Program, and private-sector initiatives such as those sponsored by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement have been catalysts for the current quality improvement effort in hospitals. "Hospitals are clearly engaged in efforts to improve health care quality in the United States," said AHRQ Director Richard Kronick, Ph.D. "The intense national focus on quality improvement in hospitals is starting to pay off, but much work remains to make sure that all Americans have access to high-quality care in every setting." The reports include trend data for most measures of quality and disparities from 2000-2002 to 2010-2011, which predate implementation of most of the Medicaid expansions and health insurance exchanges under the Affordable Care Act. The reports provide a baseline for tracking progress under the Affordable Care Act in upcoming years. The quality and disparities reports also are available online at NHQRnet, a website that has been redesigned to facilitate benchmarking and trending capabilities. It includes a data query tool to compare national- and state-level data. Printed copies of the reports can be obtained by calling 1-800-358-9295 or by sending an email to
    ahrqpubs@ahrq.hhs.gov.

     

    New Reports Shows Promise of Text Messaging  to Improve Health 

    The Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) has released a new report that provides encouraging evidence related to the use of health text messaging to improve health promotion, disease prevention, and disease management.The trends toward wide spread ownership of cell phones and widespread text message use across virtually all segments of the U.S. population support the spread of health text messaging programs. The report is an initial component of an evaluation of the Text4baby program, a free mobile health education service for pregnant women and mothers with an infant under one year of age.

     

     
    New Brief: Using Consumer Experience Surveys for Quality Improvement in Maine Health Centers
    Maine was one of six states selected to participate in NASHP's Medicaid-Safety Net Learning Collaborative. NASHP helped organize a series of web trainings for Maine's health centers on using the Consumer Assessment for Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) patient satisfaction survey for quality improvement and staff training. CAHPS is being used in the state's expansion of Patient-Centered Medical Home and accountable care strategies. This new brief was supported by a cooperative agreement with the Health Resources and Services Administration. 

     
    Maine was one of six states selected to participate in NASHP's Medicaid-Safety Net Learning Collaborative. NASHP helped organize a series of web trainings for Maine's health centers on using the Consumer Assessment for Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) patient satisfaction survey for quality improvement and staff training. CAHPS is being used in the state's expansion of Patient-Centered Medical Home and accountable care strategies. This new brief was supported by a cooperative agreement with the Health Resources and Services Administration.   
    Health Observances This Week

    Remember......

     

    National Hurricane Preparedness Week - May 25-31

     

    Did you know 

    * The 2014 Atlantic season begins June 1 and lasts until November 30?
    * The 2014 Eastern Pacific hurricane season began May 15 and lasts until November 30?
    * Next week, May 25-31, is National Hurricane Preparedness week?

    Now is the time to get prepared for hurricane season. If you live in an area vulnerable to hurricanes, take the time to create an emergency plan or update your existing plan. If you don't have an evacuation kit, now is the time to gather the supplies you will need in case of a hurricane.  If you have a kit, go through it and get it ready by replacing expired supplies or equipment. If you don't live in an area affected by hurricanes, use this week as an opportunity to update your emergency plans and learn about the threats that can affect you.

     

    To learn more about hurricane preparedness, check out the  AVMA Hurricane Preparedness and Response resources page and National Weather Service;s Hurricane Preparedness page.  

    Has your FQHC joined the National Branding Campaign?

     

    With more than 43 billion people  eligible to enroll in private insurance starting this October 1, FQHCs strive to create an identifiable unifying identity for themselves. This is where the National Branding Campaign for Our Health Centers comes into place. 

    The campaign is a national branding effort to strengthen recognition of our Health Centers as a unified and nationwide network of quality community-based primary care providers.  Initially created at the state level by the Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers (PACHC) and its membership, the National Association of Community Health Centers has expanded the campaign nationwide.

     

    The FQHC Brand Components  

    MACHC recently hosted a Branding Webinar for MD and DE Health Centers with CEO of PACHC, Cheri Reinhart and Event and Communications Coordinator, Kirsten Keyes, as guest speakers. If you missed the webinar and would like access, please click here.

    Mid-Atlantic Association of Community Health Centers | | aneeqa@machc.com |
    4319 Forbes Blvd. Lanham, MD 20706    |    www.machc.com    |    301.577.0097
     

    Copyright 2013. All Rights Reserved.