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

Next Enrollment Period starts
 November 15, 2014!!!
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August 11, 2014 
MACHC's 32nd Annual Meeting and Conference:
"Leveling the Playing Field Through the Power of One Voice''
When: September 18-19, 2014
Where: Dover Downs Conference Center

Never has there been a more important time for health centers to lead and shape the health care delivery system of the Mid Atlantic and never has it been a more critical time to speak with one voice.

Maryland and Delaware community health centers have played - and continue to play - a pivotal role in reforming their state's health care system. Decisions and efforts affecting the future of the health center network and our patients are well underway. Reform initiatives requiring us to change the way we organize care, diagnose illness, bill for reimbursement and measure improvements in health care have challenged us from every angle. All of these demands are time-consuming and come with significant cost - and financial risk.

Our conference theme "Leveling the Playing Field Through the Power of One Voice'' signifies this need. From the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, to the new Hospital Waiver in Maryland, we are key players in the face of health care reform in our state. If you are interested in learning more about such topics as ICD-10 implementation, population health management, managed care contracting in an Affordable Care era, diversifying your FQHC portfolio, best practices in Behavioral Health and Primary Care integration, you should attend this conference.

We invite you to attend our 32nd Annual Meeting and Conference on September 18-19th in Dover, Delaware at the Dover Downs Conference Center where we will engage you in the important questions before us.

For overnight accommodations, please contact Dover Downs VIP reservations at 1-866-473-7378 and refer to the MACHC Annual Conference for a discounted rate of $139.00 per night. The room block will close on August 25, 2014.
Happy HEALTH Center Week

Today is Day Two of National Health Center Week 2014 (August 10 -16), America's Health Centers; Local Engines for Healthier Communities!

National Health Center Week 2014 (August 10 -16) is in full swing! Events are underway, Members of Congress are visiting Health Centers, Proclamations and Resolutions are rolling in, and local media coverage of this year's celebration is everywhere. Here are some of the latest NHCW updates.



(1) Transformational Conference Call

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 10 am - 11 am EST

 Call in 1-866-740-1260 Access code: 4319483

Audience: FQHC Leadership

Discuss State news and happenings, share MHBE updates, present and address issues/obstacles and share best practices. MACHC provides advocacy and assistance with addressing issues/obstacles of MD/DE FQHCs.


(2) CLAS Standards Training Project

 September 10, 2014 I  12:30 - 1:30 PM

Learn about the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS Standards) are increasingly important and useful as guidelines for health care practices to better serve their diverse patient populations and address persistent health disparities.  In addition, CLAS Standards implementation is strategic at this time because it is directly linked to major statewide initiatives currently underway in Maryland, and provides a blueprint of strategies to help address the "triple aim" in health care-improving patient experience of care and health care quality, improving population health, and reducing costs. Such issues are the focus of an increasing body of evidence about the positive impact of CLAS-related approaches to health care delivery. 

Registration Link:

(3) MACHC's 32nd Annual Meeting and Conference: "Leveling the Playing Field Through the Power of One Voice''
When: Thursday, September 18th - Friday, September 19th, 2014 
Where: Dover Downs Conference Center
1131 North Dupont Highway,Dover, DE 19901
Never has there been a more important time for health centers to lead and shape the health care delivery system of the Mid Atlantic and never has it been a more critical time to speak with one voice
Maryland and Delaware community health centers have played - and continue to play - a pivotal role in reforming their state's health care system. Decisions and efforts affecting the future of the health center network and our patients are well underway. Reform initiatives requiring us to change the way we organize care, diagnose illness, bill for reimbursement and measure improvements in health care have challenged us from every angle. All of these demands are time-consuming and come with significant cost - and financial risk. 
Our conference theme "Leveling the Playing Field Through the Power of One Voice'' signifies this need. From the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, to the new Hospital Waiver in Maryland, we are key players in the face of health care reform in our state.
If you are interested in learning more about such topics as ICD-10 implementation, population health management, managed care contracting in an Affordable Care era, diversifying your FQHC portfolio, best practices in Behavioral Health and Primary Care integration, you should attend this conference.
We invite you to attend our 32nd Annual Meeting and Conference on September 18-19th in Dover, Delaware at the Dover Downs Conference Center where we will engage you in the important questions before us.   
Discounted upgraded rooms are available for $142.31 per night (plus applicable taxes and fees).This fee is for one traditional single/double or deluxe room.  For upgrades, additional fees will be incurred.  
NOTE: Each reservation will include an eventbrite fee per person. To reserve a room, please go to our registration page. If you have any questions, please contact Deitra Bell at 301-577-0097, ext 123 or Monique Alexander at ext 124 
Vendor registration now open:

    Tuesday, August 12, 2014: 2:30-4:00pm EDT  Register Here
    There is strong evidence that team-based primary care has significant benefits for patients and providers. Some care teams now include non-clinicians, such as medical assistants, health coaches, care coordinators, or community health workers. This requires both a financing source to support non-clincians' services and training to integrate them with clinical care teams. This webinar will provide context on the evidence supporting expanded roles for non-clinicians as members of care teams, and highlight case studies from two states, Maine and South Carolina, that have successfully leveraged Medicaid financing for non-clinician services and harnessed training opportunities to support expanded roles within redesigned primary care teams.

    (3) The Road to Evidence-Based Decision Making: Steps for Using Research to Inform State Policy
    Thursday, August 14, 2:00-3:30pm Eastern 
    Join NASHP for a webinar introducing a new tool for state policymakers: A Roadmap for State Policymakers to Use Comparative Effectiveness and Patient-Centered Outcomes Research to Inform Decision Making (coming August 5, 2014). With support from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), NASHP created this guide to assist states in making evidence-based policy decisions. This webinar will provide an overview of the Roadmap and discuss how policymakers can-and are-using research to inform their work.

    Thursday, August 14, 2014, 1:00pm - 2:30pm, ET. BPHC is hosting a webinar to provide information to American Indian/Alaska Native communities about the advantages and responsibilities of being a Health Center Program grantee. Two recently awarded Tribal health centers will be featured. To participate in the session use the following link: American Indian/Alaska Native Communities

    . Connect to the audio line using 1-888-795-3252; passcode: 9649057.

     View more information on this webinar.


    (5) The Intersection of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and HIV; An Independent Study Webinar -
    This independent learning webinar explores the intersection of IPV and HIV in a family planning setting and  offers participants knowledge, skills, and tools to identify "red flags" for IPV and HIV.
    Register for the webinar

    AUGUST 23-27, 2014


    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                                       

    (7) 2014 Mid Atlantic Medical Neighborhood Forum -The Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center
    National Harbor, MD  October 3 -4, 2014

     The Mid Atlantic Medical Neighborhood Forum is the second event in a series of local and regional forums to advance collaboration among all community healthcare stakeholders.  Dr Paul Grundy, Founder and President of the Patient Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC), is confirmed as the keynote for the first day of the two-day event.  On the second day, we will host the Inaugural Mid Atlantic Medical Neighborhood Golf Tournament and Awards Luncheon at the Andrews AFB.  

    Event details and registration here.

    Emergency Preparedness Events:



    Email from MACHC relative to the Ebola Virus sent last week: 

    As many of you may have read on the news, the Ebola Virus is a public health concern that has impacted 2 US citizens who are being treated here in the US.  We thought it might be helpful to arm you with some information regarding the virus and what is being done right now by the CDC to address the virus.   The following is a hyperlink to the CDC web-page on the Ebola Virus:


    Also attached please find a fact sheetand a info graphic that address the Ebola Virus produced by the CDC.


    2014 HPP-PHEP Fall Regional Preparedness Conferences



    DHMH has scheduled this year's round of Fall conferences. The dates and locations are:


    Regions I and II

    October 10, 2014 / Wisp Resort Conference Center (McHenry, MD)


    Region III

    October 3, 2014 / Maryland Department of Transportation Headquarters (Hanover, MD)


    Region IV

    October 17, 2014 / Tidewater Inn (Easton, MD)


    Region V

    October 24, 2014 / Universities at Shady Grove Conference Center (Rockville, MD)   


    Results from June 2014 Quarterly Communications Drills

    Statewide HAN Drill for Healthcare Partners

    On June 26, DHMH/OP&R conducted a statewide, no-notice test of the Maryland Health Alert Network (HAN) system for healthcare partners. The goals of this drill: (1) to successfully deliver a test notification message to all Maryland acute care hospitals, DHMH State Facilities, and federally qualified health centers (FQHCs); and (2) to receive a response back that the message was received within the specified timeframe.


    Drill results: 112 recipients were notified; 82 recipients acknowledged receipt of the message within the 2-hour allotted response timeframe. This represents a 73% success rate.


    Thank you healthcare partners, for your continued participation in the quarterly HAN drills! The next drill will take place in September.



    MSAT Satellite Phone Maintenance Check-up Visits Underway


    MSAT preventive maintenance visits to health departments and healthcare organizations are now underway. For detailed information to assist you in preparing for your facility's visit, see the attached handout: "MSAT Satellite Phone Preventive Maintenance Visits".



    We thank you in advance for your cooperation as we work to ensure that all of our state partners have functional redundant communications capabilities.



    HPP Facility Inventory Assessment Project Update


    The Facility Inventory Assessment sponsored by OP&R is now underway. Multiple vendors are assisting with this project. A goal has been set to complete the inventory assessment of all HPP-funded supplies and materials by December 31, 2014. HPP Regional Coordinators are contacting each facility to schedule inventory assessment visits.


    To ensure an efficient and effective inventory process, please notify all appropriate personnel at your facilities. It is essential that the vendor has safe access to all relevant HPP supplies and materials during the assessment visit.




    Preparedness News


    DHMH Response to Ebola Outbreak: Update


    DHMH continues to monitor the situation surrounding the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa. There are currently no known cases of EVD in Maryland, and EVD poses little risk to the U.S. general population at this time. However, healthcare workers are advised to be alert for signs and symptoms of EVD in patients with compatible illness who have a recent (within 21 days) travel history to countries where the outbreak is occurring, and should consider isolation of those patients meeting these criteria, pending diagnostic testing. Maryland clinicians who suspect Ebola virus in a traveler should contact their local public health department immediately.


    See the attached letter from Lucy Wilson, MD, ScM, Chief of the Center for Surveillance, Infection Prevention and Outbreak Response at DHMH. It contains guidance on epidemiology and identification of potential Ebola virus disease (EVD) cases and web links for additional information. Additional guidance for clinicians can be found at the CDC's Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) website [ ].


    For specific information regarding infection control recommendations and other healthcare-related resources, go to [ ] and scroll down to the Additional Resources section.


    A folder has been created on the Maryland Health Alert Network (HAN) website where new and updated information will be posted. To access the folder, log in to HAN, click on the Documents tab, and select the folder "Ebola Virus". We recommend that you "watch" this folder in order to receive automatic notifications when new content has been added. (Simply select the folder and click the "Watch" link by the star icon in the panel on the right.)



    Governor's Cabinet-Level Tabletop Exercise Addresses Ebola Virus


    Governor O'Malley convened several state agencies, including the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) in partnership with the Governor's Office of Homeland Security, to participate in a Cabinet-level tabletop exercise (TTX). The goal of the exercise was to test Maryland's operational readiness for preparing and responding to a significant public health crisis impacting the broad community of emergency responders, stakeholders, partners and residents. A variety of capabilities were tested during this exercise, including information sharing across several governmental levels and disciplines, public messaging and notification protocols, law enforcement operations in support of public health interventions, and biosurveillance.


    TTX participants included DHMH; the Governor's Office of Homeland Security (GOHS); Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems (MIEMSS); Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA); US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR); and the CDC's Division of Global Migration and Quarantine.


    For additional details, visit:



    Results Released: 2014 National Survey on Emergency Management


    In April 2014, Health Facilities Management (HFM), the American Society for Healthcare Engineering, the Association for the Healthcare Environment, and the Association for Healthcare Resource & Materials Management conducted a targeted online survey to investigate recent trends in healthcare emergency management. A random sample of 911 hospital and health system executives were selected for participation. The results of this survey have now been released.


    To review the HFM article containing the survey results, visit: Hospital Disaster Planning: 2014 Emergency Management Survey



    Star-Spangled Spectacular Celebration: September 10-16, 2014


    The 200th anniversary of the National Anthem will be celebrated in Baltimore during September 10-16, 2014. A series of large public events have been planned for September 11-14, when the State Emergency Operations Center will be fully activated. See the attached flyer for further details regarding this event.




    Healthcare Coalitions: Regional Spotlight


    Region III Health and Medical Task Force Hospital Evacuation and Patient Tracking Exercise


    The Region III Health and Medical Task Force and DHMH will be hosting a two-day exercise on August 19 & 20, 2014 to review and practice the implementation and execution of facility emergency operations plans and Hospital Incident Command during an earthquake that causes facility damage, power and utility failures, and the need to evacuate patients. The exercise will test critical decision making for hospital evacuation, the utilization of patient tracking software, and the use of various communication platforms during a regional surge event.



    Hospital Evacuation & Information Sharing Tabletop Exercise

    Date: August 19, 2014

    Time: 8:00am - 12:00pm

    Location: Alternate Care Site at Greater Baltimore Medical Center


    Hospital Evacuation & Electronic Patient Tracking Functional Exercise

    [Please note: participation in the functional portion of the exercise is limited to those who have already been identified as players.]

    Date: August 20, 2014

    Time: 8:00am - 12:00pm

    Location: participating Region III hospitals and local health departments


    Representatives from public health and healthcare (e.g. designated emergency planners and at least one additional staff member) are being invited to participate in the tabletop exercise on August 19, 2014. The additional staff member should be someone with extensive knowledge of your hospital/agency's capabilities, particularly with regard to emergency response.


    To register, email Lauren Terry, DHMH Exercise Coordinator, at For questions regarding exercise content, please contact Lauren Terry or Edward Johnson, HPP Region III Coordinator, at




    Preparedness Training, Exercises and Events


    September is National Preparedness Month!


    September is 2014 National Preparedness Month! Throughout September, activities to promote emergency preparedness will be taking place across the country. National Preparedness Month is a time toprepare yourself and those in your care for emergencies and disasters, both large scale and smaller local events. For additional information and to find out how you can get involved, visit



    Integrated Public Health and Medical Preparedness Forum (IPHMPF)


    The next IPHMPF will be held on August 25, 2014 at 9:30am. Please watch your email for a reminder notice containing information on this month's featured presenter as well as the teleconference/webinar log-in instructions.




    Upcoming Training Opportunities  ------------- 


    Community Psychological First Aid.

    The MD Responds MRC is pleased to announce Psychological First Aid training opportunities to be held on multiple dates and locations throughout Maryland. Take this free, half-day training and learn about how to improve your mental health! In Coping in Today's World-Community Psychological First Aid, the Red Cross will provide information about mental health and emergencies, including about how to prepare, respond, and recover from trauma. Participants will also receive information on community resources for coping with stress.


    Intended Audience: this course is open to the general community (healthcare background not required). Bring your friends or neighbors!


    For additional information and registration details, see the attached flyer.




    Response Planning for Functional Needs Populations in Rural Communities.

    This training is designed to educate participants on planning for the safety of those with functional needs during a crisis event - particularly persons housed in assisted-living facilities and nursing homes. Because of their restrictions and gaps in community support, rural people with functional needs are at greater risk of injury and death during a crisis than those living in suburban and urban areas. Such individuals require specialized care, transportation, shelter, and medical needs that must be considered before a crisis occurs.


    Region I

    Date: August 11, 2014

    Time: 9:00am - 4:00pm

    Location: Garrett College


    Region IV

    Date: August 14, 2014

    Time: 9:00am - 4:00pm

    Location: Talbot County Emergency Services


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


    To register:




    Joint Criminal and Epidemiological Investigation Workshop.

    This training focuses on the unique challenges of responding to a biological incident. The purpose of the workshop is to train law enforcement and public health professionals in how to work closely together for notification and information sharing purposes in order to successfully and rapidly respond to a suspected biological incident. The training will be conducted by subject matter experts from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


    Region IV

    Date: August 19, 2014

    Time: 8:30am - 4:30pm

    Location: Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay, Cambridge, MD


    Region III

    Date: August 21, 2014

    Time: 8:30am - 4:30pm

    Location: Mt. Washington Conference Center, Baltimore, MD


    Target Audience: public health epidemiologists/investigators, healthcare planners, law enforcement, EMS, Fire/HazMat, military personnel, and public information officers who may be involved in joint investigation.


    For additional information and registration details, see the attached flyer.




    G290 Basic Public Information Officer/G291 Joint Information Center/System.

    The MEMA Preparedness Directorate, Active Learning and Exercising Branch invites you to participate in the jointly-offered G290 Basic Public Information Officer and G291 JIC/JIS course. The G290 course segment emphasizes the basic skills and knowledge needed for emergency management public information activities. The G291 segment discusses how to work in a multi-jurisdictional and/or multi-agency JIC, JIC concept of operations, and how to plan for and equip a JIC. These courses are intended for the new or less experienced PIO. [Note: this is the class that is required prior to taking the Advanced PIO class at the Emergency Management Institute, Emmitsburg, MD.] 


    Date: August 19-21, 2014  (3-day course)

    Time: 8:00am - 4:30pm

    Location: Allegany County Department of Emergency Services (Cumberland, MD)


    For additional information and course registration instructions, see the attached flyer.



    VI.  Preparedness Resources


    Guidance for Infection Prevention and Respiratory Protection.

    1. The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) has released a guidance document containing CSC guidance for respirators. This document, titled "Infection Prevention for Ambulatory Care Centers During Disasters," has been posted to the ASPR Communities of Interest (COI) website. To download, visit scroll down to the "Tools" section.



    2. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH), Occupational Health Branch (OHB) has developed a useful guide and template for healthcare organizations to employ in developing and implementing effective respiratory protection programs, with an emphasis on protecting healthcare workers from aerosol transmissible diseases. The template is not copyright protected; rather, it is intended to be modified and tailored by the end user to suit their individual facility's needs. The CDPH guide and templateare included here.




    FEMA National Incident Management System (NIMS) Online Training Courses.

    FEMA's Emergency Management Institute (EMI) offers a variety of interactive, web-based NIMS training courses. For additional information and access to these free online courses, visit:





    ATTENTION MD FQHCS - Thank you for joining the MACHC Emergency Preparedness & Management Call on Wednesday, July 23rd at 10 AM. 


    1. MACHC's Table Top Exercise (see slides attached) After Action Report Improvement Plan (AARIP). Please find AARIP attached here. Additionally, the Situational Manual discussed during the discussion is attached here


    2. DHMH Satellite Phone Recall FQHCs that still have the satellite phones distributed by DHMH 4 years ago, please send them back to: 
    L. Kay Webster, MPH

    Office of Preparedness & Response

    Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene

    300 W. Preston Street, Ste. 202

    Baltimore, MD  21201 

    3. Please get in touch with your Regional Coordinators if you have not already done so and be more active in your Regional Coalition. You should already have their contacts in emails I have sent within this year numerous times. Please find them below: 


    Regions I and II Health Care Coalition 

    [Allegany, Frederick, Garrett and Washington Counties]

    Alison Robinson

    Allegany County Health Department

    12501 Willowbrook Road
    Cumberland, MD  21502
    301-759-5238 (Office)

    443-934-2232 (Mobile)

    301-777-2069 (Fax) 


    Region III  Health and Medical Task Force


    [Baltimore City; Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford and Howard Counties]

    Edward Johnson

    Harford County Health Department

    120 S. Hays Street, Suite 230
    Bel Air, MD  21014 
    410-877-1031 (Office)

    443-388-6290 (Mobile)

    410-420-3448 (Fax)


    Region IV -

    [Caroline, Cecil, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne's, Somerset, Talbot, Wicomico and Worcester Counties]

    Aniket Telang

    Kent County Health Department

    A.F. Whitsitt Center

    300 Scheeler Road

    P.O. Box 229
    Chestertown, MD  21620

    410-778-4861 (Office)

    443-690-3091 (Mobile)


    Region V  Emergency Preparedness Coalition

    [Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George's and St. Mary's Counties]

    Kamelah Jefferson

    Prince George's County Health Department

    9201 Basil Court, Suite 318

    Largo, MD  20774


    443-462-0230 (Mobile) 



    4. Find ATTACHED (Please click here) the guide was developed to provide hospitals in California with a useful tool for developing and implementing effective respiratory protection programs, with an emphasis on protecting health care workers from aerosol transmissible diseases. It was prepared by the Occupational Health Branch (OHB) of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) with funding from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOS H) National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL).  It sure looks like something that we can perhaps modify for Maryland.  
    Also attached, you will find the template for setting up a respiratory protection program in hospitals.  

    5. Upcoming: Assisting two FQHCs with Planning for Onsite Drill/Exercise in October 2014. The FQHC sites will be announced in the coming weeks. MACHC INVITES ALL FQHCS to participate during both or at least one of the drills as observers to take notes back to your own shop.
    N95 Masks POD (training) are in the horizon after the drill and release of After Action Report.
    Please look for the latest EP related updates RIGHT HERE!

    The Mid-Atlantic Association of Community Health Centers (MACHC) is proud to announce its partnership with NACHC's Value in Purchasing (ViP) Program.

    The Mid-Atlantic Association of Community Health Centers is proud to announce its partnership with Community Health Ventures, Inc. and The National Association's of Community Health Center's Value in Purchasing (ViP) Program. The ViP national program is managed by Community Health Ventures, the business development affiliate of the National Association of Community Health Centers. Unlike other group-purchasing program, the ViP Program supports the mission of America's Health Centers and works to leverage their collective buying power for better pricing. The program will deliver savings on operations to MACHC members.

     "Working with the Value in Purchasing (ViP) Program for medical supplies will allow for competitive service and pricing to the member health centers, thereby allowing the health centers to better serve the patients that are in need of high quality health care," said Duane Taylor, Chief Executive Officer. "ViP will deliver greater value as a partner who specializes in serving the primary care market.  It is a true win for MACHC, but more importantly for our member health centers and their patients."  

    "ViP brings a complete network of expertise and experience in helping community health centers optimize and expand quality, cost-effective care" says Danny Hawkins, Senior Vice President at Community Health Ventures, Inc. We're eager to introduce our value proposition and we are confident the community health centers in Utah will rely on ViP as trusted partners."

    The ViP Program is simple, user friendly and in most cases, MACHC health centers will generally start experiencing savings and superior service immediately. There are no membership fees to join and no contractual obligations. The program requires minimum implementation and streamlines the ordering process to save time. 

    Health centers and MACHC clinics are encouraged to ask for a free cost savings analysis by calling 1-888-299-0324 or by visiting:


    MACHC Website Under Construction..... 

    New Updates coming this SUMMER 

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


    National Health Center Week 2014   

    Celebrating America's Health Centers: Local Engines for Healthier Communities is August 10-16. Now is the time to  start planning and POSTING your events for this year's celebration. Access tools and resources on the NHCW website include best practices to recruit local event sponsors, event ideas, fact sheets, and  media tools and templates. 
    Check out the  NHCW Store to order event items and giveaways for your celebrations.

    Need NHCW Supplies? Take Advantage of the SALE!

    If you're planning to purchase a National Health Center Week Event Package (25 each of some of the most popular items!) from the NHCW Store, now's the time to do so! Through Sunday, July 27, the NHCW Event Package is on sale! Speaking of NHCW, if you haven't done so already, be sure to post your events to the NHCW website as soon as possible using the event posting password: healthy, and don't forget to check out all of the resources available to you on the site!

    Policy, Advocacy and Legislation
    National News
    Hoping to encourage District residents to take more interest in their health, AmeriHealth DC, the city's largest Medicaid managed care organization, has launched the "I Am Healthy" campaign, which is set to run through December 2014.  "We can transform our lives - and our health - by the many small steps we take, every day," said Karen Dale, AmeriHealth District of Columbia executive. "The goal of this campaign is to illustrate the power of choice our members and residents have to take charge of, and improve, their own health."

    221 Health Centers nationwide will expand behavioral health services using funds from the health care law

    Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced today $54.6 million in Affordable Care Act funding to support 221 health centers in 47 states and Puerto Rico to establish or expand behavioral health services for over 450,000 people nationwide. Health centers will use these new funds for efforts such as hiring new mental health professionals, adding mental health and substance use disorder health services, and employing integrated models of primary care.



    COMMUNITY CLINIC, INC., THESilver SpringMD$ 250,000

    NHCW TeleForum to Take Place Wednesday, August 13th at 3PM ET

    The National Health Center Week (NHCW) 2014 kickoff is just a few days away! In celebration of NHCW, please join NACHC President and CEO Tom Van Coverden, as well as Health Center representatives for an exciting call with HHS and HRSA officials to help celebrate NHCW on Wednesday, August 13that 3PM ET. Click here to sign up to receive the call, or dial 1-877-229-8493 and enter PIN 15035 to join the call directly on Wednesday. Stay tuned for more details coming soon.

    Next week during NHCW, don't forget to be snapping photos and capturing video during your events and submit them to the NHCW picture and video contest. The contest kicked off on August 1st and runs through August 29th. Please continue to take advantage of the many resources available to you on the NHCW website - check out the Media Toolkit for a template letter to the editor, OpEd, and press release - NHCW is a great opportunity for local press coverage. And, don't forget to keep posting your events (the password is healthy) and letting us know when your Members of Congress confirm their visits to your Health Center!

    New Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) Rule

    The FTCA Policy Manual has been updated to reflect recent amendments to the FTCA Health Center regulations. Program Assistance Letter (PAL) 2014-09 was issued to clarify the rule changes effective December 23, 2013.  

    Partnership for Prevention's ActionToQuit initiative has released a new guide titled, Help Your Patients Quit Tobacco Use: An Implementation Guide for the Armed Force.  It points out that rates remain higher among people serving in the military than in the civilian population.  "This is of particular concern because of the substantial negative effects of tobacco use on military readiness. Among these are impaired physical endurance, increased absenteeism for illness, delayed wound healing, and reduced night vision."  The Partnership recommends that tobacco cessation treatment should be a standard of care at every patient encounter, and views the Guide as a practical supplement to the publication,VA/DoDClinical Practice Guideline on Management of Tobacco Use (2008).

    Bipartisan House Funding Cliff Letter Launched; Ask Your Representative to Sign Today!

    In addition to the Funding Cliff Letter led by Senators Blunt, Stabenow, Boozman, and Carper now circulating in the Senate, a similar letter was launched in the House this morning. The bipartisan House companion letter led by Representatives Kay Granger (TX), Gene Green (TX), Leonard Lance (NJ), and David Price (NC) is now open for signatures. Please reach out to your Representatives to request that they sign on to this letter to Speaker Boehner and Minority Leader Pelosi to publicly state their support for the Health Center program and a responsible, bipartisan solution to the looming Health Center Funding Cliff. You can use the same link to also request that your senators sign on to the Senate Funding Cliff Letter currently circulating. Both the Senate and House Dear Colleague letters and a current list of signers can be viewed on the Funding Cliff section of the NACHC website.

    Congress Passes Legislation to Improve Veterans Health Care Access 

    After months of deliberation, Congress passed legislation to provide $17 billion in emergency spending to improve access to care for veterans who either cannot get a timely appointment or live more than 40 miles from a VA facility. Under this legislation, veterans who meet these qualifications can choose to seek care from any provider participating in Medicare, an FQHC, the Department of Defense, or the Indian Health Service, with a guarantee from the VA that those services would be reimbursed at Medicare rates, up to $10 billion in total. Support for the final legislation was nearly unanimous, passing by a vote of 91-3 in the Senate and 420-5 in the House. The President is expected to sign the bill sometime this week. 
    NC Mayor Walks To DC To Protest Hospital Closure
    A North Carolina mayor fighting for the hospital that closed in his rural North Carolina town finished his two-week protest march to the nation's capital, where he told a crowd that his community's problems are part of a larger health care struggle. "The story of Belhaven is bigger than the trials of a single small town," Mayor Adam O'Neal said at a news conference Monday in Washington, D.C. The 45-year-old registered Republican started his two-week march of more than 200 miles to protest the closing of Vidant Pungo Hospital in Belhaven on July 1 
    That shift might seem surprising in this political season, when there has been a renewed focus on reproductive issues like access to abortion and birth control. Yet advocates say that the term pro-choice, which has for so long been closely identified with abortion, does not reflect the range of women's health and economic issues now being debated 

    BPHC All Programs Webcast


    The Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) held an "All Programs" webcast this week.  Some of the highlights:

    • In recognition of National Health Center Week, Department of Health & Human Services Secretary  Sylvia Mathews Burwell,  HRSA Administrator Mary Wakefield, and leaders of the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) will hold a conference call on Wednesday, August 13, 2014, 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm  ET to discuss National Health Center Week and thank all health centers across the country for their efforts to provide millions of Americans access to affordable, high quality health care.  To join the call: 1-877-229-8493, Passcode 15035.
    • Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) supplemental base awards will be distributed later this week and next week.  Eligible health centers will receive a base amount of $25,000 plus $5,000 for each additional site.
    • Health centers that received outreach & enrollment (O/E) grant funds in July 2013 have already received the ongoing O/E funds in their base award to cover the months between July 1, 2014 through the end of their FY 2014 budget period.  Health centers should be preparing for the upcoming open enrollment period that begins on November 15, 2014.
    • Next week state and local UDS data profiles will be available on the HRSA website.
    • The Health Center Program Satisfaction Survey is coming in mid-August - all health centers are urged to please respond and complete the survey - BPHC values the input and feedback.

    State News
    DPH Community Health seeks opportunities for launching community-driven strategic plans
    Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) staff is now trained in the interactive Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships (MAPP) facilitation process through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO).
    The specially-trained staff is seeking opportunities to facilitate community health strategic planning with organized communities. The MAPP process improves the efficiency, effectiveness, and ultimately the performance of local public health systems. Call Cassandra Codes-Johnson, MPA, DPH Director of Community Health, at 302-744-4741; or visit

    Substance abuse treatment services available by county
    Delawareans addicted to illegal and prescription drugs, alcohol, and gambling can access many treatment avenues.
    "Please don't be ashamed or embarrassed to seek treatment," said DHSS' Director of Community Mental Health and Addiction Services Steve Dettwyler, PhD. "Addiction is a disease. It can be treated, and people do recover."
    DHSS' Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) provides public drug and alcohol treatment services for adults in every county. Services include counseling, opioid treatment, continuous treatment team programs for people with long-term, disabling alcohol and drug dependence disorders; detoxification, and residential services.
    For treatment help, Delawareans suffering from substance abuse can call 800-652-2929 in New Castle County and 800-345-6785 in Kent and Sussex counties. Those with gambling problems should call the Delaware Council on Gambling Problems, Inc. at 888-850-8888. Visit:

    CareFirst to Award $3.3 Million for Maternal and Child Health Initiatives

    As part of efforts to lower infant mortality rates and improve health outcomes for newborns in DC, Maryland and Northern Virginia, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield is offering up $3.3 million dollars in funding over the next three years.  "Generally, maternal and child health outcomes in our service areas continue to lag behind the national average, and significant disparities along racial and socio-economic lines persist," said Maria Harris Tildon, CareFirst Senior Vice President of Public Policy and Community Affairs. "By expanding access and eliminating the barriers these mothers and their children face in seeking quality, affordable care, we hope to achieve lasting change that will have a real, measurable impact in these communities." 

    Finance & Business

    HHS Establishes October 1, 2015 ICD10 Launch Date

    In a final rule (PDF) issued last Thursday, the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) formally set an October 1, 2015, compliance date for conversion to ICD-10 diagnostic and procedure codes.  The agency had the option to issue an interim final rule with comment period, but instead proceeded with a definitive date through issuance of the final rule. 


    Good News For Boomers: Medicare's Hospital Trust Fund Appears Flush Until 2030

    Medicare's Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, which finances about half the health program for seniors and the disabled, won't run out of money until 2030, the program's trustees said Monday. That's four years later than projected last year and 13 years later than projected the year before the passage of the Affordable Care Act"  

    Medicare Finances Improve Partly Due To ACA, Hospital Expenses, Trustee Report Says
    The annual report, issued Monday by trustees overseeing the government's two largest entitlement programs, found little change overall in the finances of Social Security. The trustees warned, however, that the part of Social Security that pays monthly benefits to people with disabilities is especially fragile and, without changes, will start to run short of money for benefit checks in 2016.


    Medicare Finances Improve As Healthcare Inflation Slows, Trustees Say

    Medicare Part B premiums are expected to remain the same through 2015 because of that improvement, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell told reporters as the report was released. Medicare is "considerably stronger than it was just four years ago," she said. 

    Latest News on ACA


    Women's Health Resources

    There are many  preventive health benefits for women that are available through Marketplace plans at no cost. There are resources designed to inform women about these benefits including: 

     Free Preventive Health Benefits; 

     Affordable Care Act and Women Infographic (PDF); 

    Well-Woman Visit Infographic

    and Health Care Providers‚€™ Role for Screening and Counseling for Interpersonal Violence.


    FOR FFM/ Federal Partnership States only:


    CMS Issues Updated O/E FAQs 

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released new guidance for promoting the availability of health center outreach and enrollment (O/E) assistance. Details on what activities are allowable, and under what circumstances, are available in the HRSA Health Center Ongoing (O&E) Assistance FAQs .


    CAC Certification Expiration Dates

    This is replicated as published in the CMS Weekly Assister Newsletter.


    Question: I am a certified application counselor (CAC) and completed my CAC training on the Medicare Learning Network (MLN) in July or August 2013. It's been a year or more since I was issued my training completion certificate. Does this mean that my CAC certification has already expired?


    Answer: No. As the training certificate from the Medicare Learning Network(MLN) itself indicates, a CAC's training certificate is not the official document indicating that the CAC is certified. The official CAC certification is not issued by CMS or by the MLN training website; it is issued only by the CMS-designated CAC organization with which the CAC is affiliated. Furthermore, a CMS-designated CAC organization is authorized to certify its staff or volunteers as CACs only after that organization has completed all steps required in the designation process and received a confirmation of designation email from CMS, which CMS sends only after the organization has signed its agreement with CMS and submitted the signed agreement to CMS. Last year, CMS sent no official confirmation of designation emails to organizations before mid-September 2013, which means that mid-September 2013 is the earliest that any individual CAC could have been validly certified by his or her designated organization. Therefore, no individual CAC's recertification anniversary date should be earlier than mid-September 2014. 


    CMS Friday Webinar Schedule

    Please note we have three webinars in the month of August.  Note we've added an additional webinar next Friday in addition to our planned bi-weekly webinars. Please be sure to mark these dates on your calendar. We will continue to send our newsletters every week throughout the summer. 

    Friday, August 8: Webinar at 2 p.m.
    Friday, August 15: Webinar at 2 p.m.

    Friday, August 22: Webinar at 2 p.m.
    Friday, August 29: No Webinar

    NOTE: All times listed are EDT. The webinar schedule is subject to change in order to deliver late-breaking information. 

    Stay Tuned... Navigator and CAC Recertification Training

    As you are aware, Navigators and Certified Application Counselor (CACs) must be recertified on at least an annual basis. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is in the process of finalizing the recertification process and training materials and expect to share more details soon.  Please stay tuned. 


    Webinar on Outreach to Individuals with Low Literacy

    There are challenges in effectively communicating with people who are eligible but not yet enrolled for Medicaid, CHIP and/or the Marketplace and may have literacy-related barriers to enrollment.  On Wednesday, August 13 from 3-4 pm, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is sponsoring a webinar offering tips to conducting outreach and enrollment assistance to individuals with low literacy skills, drawn from research and practical experience as part of CMS's Connecting Kids to Coverage Campaign.  The webinar will not be recorded and pre-registration is required. Register here. 


    Helping Medicaid/CHIP-Denied Consumers Enroll in Special Enrollment Periods 

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has posted a new assister tip sheet  to the Resources for Assisters page that clarifies that in limited circumstances, a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) may be available for two groups of consumers who were determined ineligible for Medicaid or CHIP and wish to enroll in Marketplace coverage outside of the annual Open Enrollment Period.  A consumer who wants to request a Limited Circumstance Special Enrollment Period must request the SEP by calling the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596.  Once a SEP is activated, a consumer has 60 days to select a plan. Coverage effective dates will follow the regular effective dates based on the date of plan selection.


    Resources on Outreach to Homeless Populations
    The National Health Care for the Homeless Council has developed a series of papers that describe practices and strategies for outreach and enrollment. Some of these papers include: 
    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


    Invitation: ACSE Monthly Status Meeting @ Monthly 

    from 10am to 11:30am on the fourth Monday, August 25th

    Conference Call 877-431-1883 code 370 252 4147 

    Change Agent Newtwork Meeting

    MHBE Standing Advisory Committee Meeting
    August 15, 2014 1:30 - 3:30 pm
    4160 Patterson Avenue,Baltimore, MD21215,United States

    Message from the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange

    MD HBX System Sneak-Peek

    Consumer Account Management

    The MD HBX Consumer Portal offers users the ability to apply and enroll in health insurance when they arrive on the landing page.

    When users visit, they can create an account right away or engage in "anonymous browsing" to shop for Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) without having to enter personal information. Anonymous browsing is a new feature for Maryland. This helps consumers identify if they may qualify for a MAGI Medicaid program or a QHP. The feature also reduces incomplete enrollments.


    We Are Making Progress

    The MD HBX system implementation project continues to move forward. Below are a few brief system updates from the team:

    • Templates containing insurance plan information from the health insurance carriers have been received. Our team has uploaded these plans into the system for display to consumers. We are also working with exchange insurance carriers to make sure that the system's internal logic is correct.
    • The team is working to understand how carriers need to see the data sets created during enrollment that are sent nightly on 834s.
    • Plan management was the first functionality to undergo testing to make sure we are ready for Open Enrollment. MD HBX eligibility and enrollment features are being tested now.
    • Nineteen notices have been edited to fit State requirements and completed for delivery via email or postal mail that can alert consumers to important messages regarding their account.
    • Language changes have been received and sent to the developers and translators to adapt the system to Spanish language.
    • In the meantime, MHBE has a plan to ensure that all people using the system are ready to use the system on Nov. 15 through comprehensive training. To date, 33 real-world training scenarios and related training material are being developed.
    • In addition, key communication messages are being delivered to help promote awareness of the project and commitment to its approach.
    • MHBE is looking at all the impacts of using the new MD HBX system as it was originally designed. This means that all of the people that will be using the system will need to understand how their work may change to support a successful open enrollment. To facilitate this effort, 12 chalkboard-sized process maps have been developed.


    Know Your Role


    Caseworkers and their supervisors work for the Maryland Department of Human Resources (DHR) and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH). They help consumers complete each interaction with a consumer from end to end.

    Within the MD HBX system, they can:

    • Create new applications
    • Report changes on existing applications
    • Submit redetermination applications
    • Complete verification checklist items. (As indicated by information from the consumer or other databases.)

    Each caseworker will have access to the MD HBX worker portal. This means supervisors will still be able to assist case workers within the MD HBX system when applications are ambiguous or unusually complex. Caseworkers will also be assigned to roles that enable them to process paper applications that have been received and converted into work items. This is critical to the success in maintaining regulatory compliance.

    Call Center Representatives 

    Consumer support center representatives play several roles in assisting consumers with their enrollment needs. They answer questions to enable the consumer to continue with their online application in the MD HBX system. They provide end-to-end application assistance in MD HBX.

    They also can:

    • Create a new application
    • Continue an in-progress application
    • Report changes on an existing application
    • Submit redetermination applications

    Call center workers and their supervisors each have access to the system, allowing supervisors to assist in complex consumer situations. The call center workers will also provide password resets and help consumers resolve issues that are preventing them from completing an application.


    Producers use the Consumer Portal to complete applications on behalf of their clients for Qualified Health Plans. They will play a vital role in retaining last year's enrollees through their established connections with consumers and carriers. Producers are the only Consumer Assisters who provide direct advice to consumers about which plan will work best for them. Producers provide ongoing support to their clients throughout the year with life events and special enrollments.

    Connector Entities

    Connector Entities employ Navigators and Assisters. Navigators are certified to enroll Marylanders in health insurance using the MD HBX Worker Portal and are located in DHR and DHMH offices. They are unable to recommend specific health plans to users but can provide information that enables the consumer to pick their own plan.

    In-Person Assisters are non-certified personnel who are trained to provide information and enrollment help primarily for Medicaid. Assisters work for community organizations. They provide side-by-side help for consumers through the Consumer Portal. They also do not recommend specific health plans.

    Certified Application Counselors

    Certified Application Counselors help consumers use the MD HBX system and select health insurance coverage. Their role is typically a professional in a medical role at a care provider location. They will not have accounts in the MD HBX consumer or worker portals. They often enroll consumers who are uninsured and seeking medical treatment. This provides the consumer access to immediate treatment, without transfer to another facility.


    MHBE staff will have roles that allow them to administer the system and provide a view into how the system is operating. They will be responsible for maintaining global settings that affect all stakeholder roles. The plan management team works with carriers to ensure that the data provided are accurate and correct. This provides consumers a better shopping experience when they are able to compare plan data and make a more informed plan enrollment. They will begin using the system Sept. 1.


    Xerox will have a few system roles necessary to provide support for the system architecture, provide a solid technology environment and keep the system performing at a high level even during peak demand.


    You Will Be Prepared

    MD HBX system training will be provided for staff that who need immediate access and will be regular system users. Training will be provided in two releases.

    The training needed for the Release 1 Plan Management will be delivered directly to the plan management group in late August. This will prepare them for the Sept. 1 system usage to enter carrier plan data.

    Release 2 training involves more steps. In the initial training, Deloitte will train MHBE-selected trainers. This training begins in early September. Next, the selected trainers will begin training system users. This is scheduled to begin in early October and end in mid-November. DHR and DHMH will train their own staff. MHBE will train all other audiences, such as Navigators, Assisters, Producers, and Certified Application Counselors.


    In preparation for open enrollment, starting November 15, 2014, Maryland Health Connection's Training Department is in the process of developing a training schedule for the MD HBX.  MD HBX is the new system that will be utilized by consumer assistance workers, to include Certified Application Counselors (CAC), to assist consumers with the application process for enrollment into healthcare coverage through Maryland Health Connection.  We are extending the opportunity for Application Counselor Sponsoring Entities to reserve training space to train the CACs in their organization. Training is scheduled to begin October 6, 2014 - November 11, 2014.  Training will consists of a required online training, through the learning management system, which will serve as a prerequisite to the classroom hands on training. The online training will include topics such as: application entry; enrollment and intake/eligibility; functionality of the MD HBX system; and an overview of the MD HBX Consumer and worker portal. The one day, hands on classroom training will simulate real life family situations which are often complex.  Organizations and participants should plan for a seven hour day to complete the classroom training which will consist of 6 hours of training with a one hour break. As stated earlier, the MD HBX classroom training is hands on and will require each participant to access a computer either through a computer lab with internet access or a meeting room with wifi access for each CAC to connect to using a laptop provided by their organization. Classes should not exceed 16 participants per training session. The priority is to train individuals who have met all the requirements to become a CAC. We are in the process of transitioning the required CAC 3-day webinar into an online training format in which it will be accessible on the new learning management system for new applicants who are seeking to become certified and sit for the CAC final exam.   Please note, if organizations do not provide space to train their CACs, the CACs will be subject to travel to training locations during the dates and times scheduled by MHC. As of now, we do not have a training schedule for the CACs. Trainers will be assigned on a first come, first served basis, so we would like to have organizational availability to no later than COB July 31, 2014. If you would like to schedule a CAC MD MBX hands on training session at your organization, please send the following information to the name and address of your organization; the number of training participants; if training will be held in a computer lab with individual workstations or a meeting space with laptops; and the start and end time of the training room reservation. Please feel free to contact if you have any questions regarding this email.  


    Grants & Funding Opportunities

    Reminder: Outreach and Enrollment (O/E) Ongoing Funding 

    Health centers that received O/E grant funds in July 2013 have already received the ongoing O/E funds in their base award to cover the months between July 1, 2014 through the end of their FY 2014 budget period. Health centers should be preparing for the upcoming open enrollment period that begins on November 15, 2014. Contact with any questions or concerns related to O/E.


    Reminder: Fiscal Year 2015 Affordable Care Act (ACA) New Access Point (NAP) Grants (HRSA-15-016) - Applications for funding opportunity HRSA-15-016 are due in by Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 11:59pm, ET and in HRSA's Electronic Handbook (EHB) by Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 8:00pm, ET.
    View more information and resources on the NAP opportunity


    Federal Surplus Personal Property Program

    Application Deadline: None  

    Eligible state and local government agencies and nonprofit organizations, including health centers, can obtain property that the federal government no longer needs through the Federal Surplus Personal Property Donation Program.


    Update: Fiscal Year 2015 New Access Point (NAP) Funding Opportunity (HRSA-15-016) - Webinar recordings are now available from the NAP Applicant Technical Assistance Session and the Cooperative Agreement Partners Briefing which provided an overview of the $100 million announcement to support an estimated 150 NAP grant awards in FY 2015. 
    As a reminder, applications are due in by Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 11:59pm, ET and in HRSA's Electronic Handbook (EHB) by Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 8:00pm, ET.


    Healthy Smiles, Healthy Children Access to Care Grants 

    Application Deadline: August 18, 2014

    Matching grants to support community-based initiatives in the U.S. providing dental care to underserved/limited access children. Special consideration will be given to programs that have demonstrated success and/or have potential for replication in other communities.

    Funds may be used to cover:

    • Child oral health care
    • Costs of clinic supplies and instruments
    • Patient/parent education materials
    • Take-home supplies (toothbrushes, toothpaste, etc.)
    • Education and/or outreach to recruit dentist participation in program activities
    • Other activity with clear, direct impact on pediatric oral health care  
    Application Deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis
    Funding for hunger prevention, self-sufficiency, healthcare, and education to those who are underserved. 
    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 
    2014 Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) Standards and Accreditation Updates Webinar - Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 1:00pm - 2:30pm, ET. 
    BPHC is hosting a webinar  with the National Committee on Quality Assurance (NCQA), The Joint Commission (TJC) and the Accreditation Association of Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) on the new 2014 PCMH standards and accreditation updates.

    To participate in the session use the following link: PCMH Standards and Accreditation Updates . Connect to the audio line using 1-800-857-5012; passcode: 9413383.

    Clinical Quality 
    AHRQ has published a new implementation guide to help state officials and other program administrators engage and partner with stakeholders in initiatives to improve the quality of child health care. It is the first implementation guide from the national evaluation of the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA) Quality Demonstration Grant Program. "Engaging Stakeholders to Improve the Quality of Children's Health Care" is an online guide that builds on the early strategies, lessons learned and challenges from Georgia, Idaho and Massachusetts to help other states plan and implement structures to support meaningful stakeholder engagement in child health care quality improvement initiatives. It includes a five-step approach to engaging stakeholders, breaking down each step into smaller tasks and providing key points and resources to consider throughout the process. The CHIPRA Quality Demonstration Grant Program aims to identify effective, replicable strategies for enhancing the quality of health care for children. AHRQ is leading the national evaluation of these demonstrations. The national evaluation is funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

    August 12 Webinar Will Focus on Preventing Falls in Long-Term Care Settings

    AHRQ is hosting the fourth in a series of four webinars August 13 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET on the use of "Improving Patient Safety in Long-Term Care Facilities Training Modules." The webinar, developed for nurses and staff educators in long-term care facilities, will focus on falls prevention and management. Continuing education credits will be available to participants at no cost. Registration is free, but space is limited. The first three webinars provided an overview of the series, tools to train staff on how to detect change in a resident's condition and tools on how best to communicate change in a resident's condition. Registration is open.
    Health Observances This Week


    August is HPV Awareness Month


    Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. Some health effects caused by HPV can be prevented with vaccines.
    What is HPV?

    HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI). HPV is a different virus than HIV and HSV (herpes).  HPV is so common that nearly all sexually active men and women get it at some point in their lives. There are many different types of HPV. Some types can cause health problems including genital warts and cancers. But there are vaccines that can stop these health problems from happening.

    How is HPV spread?

    You can get HPV by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the virus. It is most commonly spread during vaginal or anal sex. HPV can be passed even when an infected person has no signs or symptoms.

    Anyone who is sexually active can get HPV, even if you have had sex with only one person. You also can develop symptoms years after you have sex with someone who is infected making it hard to know when you first became infected.

    Does HPV cause health problems?

    In most cases, HPV goes away on its own and does not cause any health problems. But when HPV does not go away, it can cause health problems like genital warts and cancer.

    Genital warts usually appear as a small bump or group of bumps in the genital area. They can be small or large, raised or flat, or shaped like a cauliflower. A healthcare provider can usually diagnose warts by looking at the genital area.

    Does HPV cause cancer?

    HPV can cause cervical and other cancers including cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis, or anus. It can also cause cancer in the back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils (called oropharyngeal cancer).

    Cancer often takes years, even decades, to develop after a person gets HPV. The types of HPV that can cause genital warts are not the same as the types of HPV that can cause cancers.

    There is no way to know which people who have HPV will develop cancer or other health problems. People with weak immune systems (including individuals with HIV/AIDS) may be less able to fight off HPV and more likely to develop health problems from it.

    How can I avoid HPV and the health problems it can cause?

    You can do several things to lower your chances of getting HPV.

    Get vaccinated. HPV vaccines are safe and effective. They can protect males and females against diseases (including cancers) caused by HPV when given in the recommended age groups (see "Who should get vaccinated?" below). HPV vaccines are given in three shots over six months; it is important to get all three doses.

    Get screened for cervical cancer. Routine screening for women aged 21 to 65 years old can prevent cervical cancer.

    If you are sexually active

    • Use latex condoms the right way every time you have sex. This can lower your chances of getting HPV. But HPV can infect areas that are not covered by a condom - so condoms may not give full protection against getting HPV;
    • Be in a mutually monogamous relationship - or have sex only with someone who only has sex with you.
    Who should get vaccinated?

    All boys and girls ages 11 or 12 years should get vaccinated.

    Catch-up vaccines are recommended for males through age 21 and for females through age 26, if they did not get vaccinated when they were younger.

    The vaccine is also recommended for gay and bisexual men (or any man who has sex with a man) through age 26. It is also recommended for men and women with compromised immune systems (including people living with HIV/AIDS) through age 26, if they did not get fully vaccinated when they were younger.

    How do I know if I have HPV?

    There is no test to find out a person's "HPV status." Also, there is no approved HPV test to find HPV in the mouth or throat.

    There are HPV tests that can be used to screen for cervical cancer. These tests are recommended for screening only in women aged 30 years and older. They are not recommended to screen men, adolescents, or women under the age of 30 years.

    Most people with HPV do not know they are infected and never develop symptoms or health problems from it. Some people find out they have HPV when they get genital warts. Women may find out they have HPV when they get an abnormal Pap test result (during cervical cancer screening). Others may only find out once they've developed more serious problems from HPV, such as cancers.

    How common is HPV and the health problems caused by HPV?

    HPV (the virus): About 79 million Americans are currently infected with HPV. About 14 million people become newly infected each year. HPV is so common that most sexually-active men and women will get at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives.

    Health problems related to HPV include genital warts and cervical cancer.

    Genital warts: About 360,000 people in the United States get genital warts each year.

    Cervical cancer: More than 10,000 women in the United States get cervical cancer each year.

    There are other conditions and cancers caused by HPV that occur in persons living in the United States. 

    Each year, about 21,000 of HPV-related cancers could be prevented by getting the HPV vaccine.

    I'm pregnant. Will having HPV affect my pregnancy?

    If you are pregnant and have HPV, you can get genital warts or develop abnormal cell changes on your cervix. Abnormal cell changes can be found with routine cervical cancer screening. You should get routine cervical cancer screening even when you are pregnant.

    Can I be treated for HPV or health problems caused by HPV?

    There is no treatment for the virus itself. However, there are treatments for the health problems that HPV can cause:

    1. Genital warts can be treated by you or your physician. If left untreated, genital warts may go away, stay the same, or grow in size or number.
    2. Cervical precancer can be treated. Women who get routine Pap tests and follow up as needed can identify problems before cancer develops. Prevention is always better than treatment. For more information visit
    3. Other HPV-related cancers are also more treatable when diagnosed and treated early. For more information visit
    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.

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