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

Faith Engagement Outreach & Enrollment Webinar is on Friday, January 8, 2016. Registration details under MACHC Happenings!
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. 

December 15, 2015
Congratulations to Baltimore Medical System's Lindsey Schaumberg for passing Incident Command System 100 Test! MACHC is so proud.
We strongly urge all our FQHCs to participate on Emergency Preparedness activities and complete ICS Trainings/tests.

From MACHC Family to YOU:

***Please note this is MACHC's last Eblast until the new year starts. The next Eblast will be out on January 19th.***


(1) Outreach & Enrollment Webinar Series Dates with Enroll America:
  • January 15, 2015 1pm -2pm Faith Engagement Webinar
(2)  Leadership Development Institute - Double Tree Annapolis, MD 
January 14, 2016

(3) Outreach & Enrollment Call 
Friday, January 15, 2016
1-866-740-1260 Access 4319483
Who: Outreach Staff
Discuss state updates, best practices, barriers/issues that need attention and provide any support and advocacy where needed.


  • (1)  Managing Ambulatory   Health Care I: Introductory Course for Clinicians in Community Health Centers
    Delray Beach, Florida
    January 11-18, 2016
    Apr 10 - 12, 2016
    Cambridge, MD 
    Type: Conference/Meeting
    Sponsoring organization: Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center

    Emergency Preparedness Events: 

    The city of Boston and Community Health Centers joined efforts on an initiative to reach out to neighborhoods most affected by violent crime.  Trauma Recovery Teams -- staffed by clinicians and a community workers-- are stationed in each health center located in some of the most violent-riddled neighborhoods.   They are deployed within up to 72 hours after an incident and provide counseling, organize support groups, and assistance with shelter food and healthcare to victims.
    "These health centers have a broader definition of their role working in the community, promoting resilience and healing," explained Catherine Fine, director of violence prevention at the Public  Health Commission, to Globe reporter Jan Ransom.
    Chronic exposure to violence does affect people's health, often in ways they are not aware of, according to the article.  When combined with poverty the health complications can include obesity and heart disease.

    The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) has launched
    The Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange
    (TRACIE) which now allows health and emergency preparedness professionals access to the nation's most comprehensive system of resources designed to help communities better manage the health impacts of disasters.  TRACIE features resource materials, a help line, just-in-time suggestions, and tools to share information gleaned from real-life experiences in preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters.To learn more about preparedness, response and recovery from the health impacts of disasters, visit the HHS public health and medical emergency website via clicking on the title above.

    Important Announcement for Maryland FQHCS
    Please get in touch with your Regional Coordinators if you have not already done so and be more active in your Regional Coalition. MACHC has reached out to you in order to make sure you know who your coordinators are and has planned MINI GRANTS as incentives to help with travel for the Coalition meetings.
    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 UNTIL JANUARY 1, 2016
    New Regional Coordinator will be posted here
    Allegany County Health Department
    12501 Willowbrook Road
    Cumberland, MD  21502
    301-759-5238 (Office)
    443-934-2232 (Mobile)
    301-777-2069 (Fax)

    [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)

    Region IV 
    [Caroline, Cecil, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne's, Somerset, Talbot, Wicomico and Worcester Counties]
    Kristin McMenamin
    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)
    410-778-4862 (Fax)

    Region V  Emergency Preparedness Coalition
    [Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George's and St. Mary's Counties]
    Casey Owens
    Office of Preparedness & Response
    Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
    300 W. Preston Street, Ste. 202
    Baltimore, MD  21201 

    Preparedness Resources 
    September is National Preparedness Month, a time for everyone to plan how to stay safe and communicate during the disasters that can affect your community. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) developed resources that can help you spread the word about preparedness in your community.
    , and public service announcements. 

    What to look forward to:
    MACHC has been working diligently to finalize this year's Emergency Preparedness Plan. The tentative goal for us is to 1.) increase participation at DHMH Regional Meetings (we are looking into mini grants to incentivize this effort further; we will keep you posted) 2.)  Gather the number of FQHCs that have existing MOUs and those who are currently working/partnering with a neighboring hospital/clinic (please email this information to Aneeqa Chowdhury at aneeqa@machc.com with the subject: EP MOU Status) and 3.) Conduct two Tabletop exercises and two Functional Exercises this year. The focus of our exercises this year will be mass care, ebola and pathogen illnesses. 
    Please remember to participate during Fall Regional Public Health and Medical Preparedness Conferences. The DHMH HPP Regional Preparedness Conferences are being held in October 2015. Please see below for schedule:
    Items on this year's agenda: Ebola "In Progress" Review; Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) Planning; Regional Updates; 3M Fit Testing and PPE Donning & Doffing Training
    Who should attend: acute care and specialty hospitals, DHMH state facilities, community health center/FQHCs, local health departments, regional healthcare coalition members (current and prospective)
    To register, visit the DHMH/OP&R Events Calendar:


    How Prepared Is Your Community for an Emergency? 

    Download the kit checklist: 

    Family communication and evacuation plan: 


    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

    *** Look for the latest EP related updates RIGHT HERE!
    Policy, Advocacy and Legislation
    National News
    MACHC 2015 Techincal Assistance & Satisfaction 
    Attention all MACHC FQHCS, please find the following survey link http://svy.mk/1PgQEZG for MACHC's 2015 Technical Assistance (TA) & Satisfaction. We strongly urge you to complete this short survey to submit your opinion on this past year's TA. Please note that these surveys help to plan the following year's TAs for all of you. Therefore, we encourage you to fill the survey out NO LATER than COB on Friday, January 8, 2016. Thank you so very much for your opinion and support!

    The electronic exchange of health information has increased over time and is used most in hospitals and the least in long-term care settings. However, the practice of exchanging health information electronically remains low overall. Some evidence suggests electronically exchanging health information may reduce duplicative laboratory and radiology testing, lower emergency department costs, reduce hospital admissions, improve public health reporting, increase ambulatory quality of care and improve disability claims processing. Barriers to electronically exchanging health information include lack of participation, inefficient workflows and poorly designed features. To advance our understanding of how to better exchange health information electronically, future studies need to address comprehensive questions, use more rigorous designs and be part of a coordinated, systematic approach to studying the electronic exchange of health information.

    Nonpharmacological Versus Pharmacological Treatments for Adult Patients With Major Depressive Disorder
    Second-generation antidepressants and cognitive behavioral therapy can alleviate symptoms for mild to severe major depressive disorder when used as a first step in outpatient treatment, according to a new AHRQ-supported systematic review. The review looked at the benefits and harms of second-generation antidepressants, psychological therapies, complementary and alternative medicine and exercise treatment options as first-step outpatient treatments for adults with major depressive disorder. The review also assessed second-step interventions for patients with major depressive disorder whose illness did not go into remission after it was first treated with second-generation antidepressants. Related research, which appeared online December 8 in BMJ, compared the benefits and harms of second-generation antidepressants and cognitive behavioral therapy for treating depression in adults. Clinicians providing initial treatment to patients with major depressive disorder should consider the patient's history and preferences, following a discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of treatment options

    Analysts had been concerned that higher premiums and deductibles might scare off new enrollees. But, according to the administration, 2.4 million of the roughly six million people who signed up as of Dec. 17 were new customers. Administration officials said that is about a third more than had signed up last year ahead of the deadline for coverage starting Jan. 1. 
    Pressure is building on some of the remaining 20 states that have yet to take advantage of federal dollars available to expand Medicaid programs for poor Americans under the Affordable Care Act. ... A snapshot of the pressure on the 20 states still opposed to Medicaid expansion can be seen this month in Kansas where GOP lawmakers and Republican Governor Sam Brownback have faced an onslaught of lobbying from hospitals in the state, advocates for the uninsured, media and Kathleen Sebelius, Kansas' former Democratic governor and the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services in President Obama's first term. 

    At The Democratic Debate, Only Clinton Promises No Middle Class Tax Increases
    Hillary Clinton was the only one of the three Democrats on stage Saturday night willing to pledge that she wouldn't raise taxes on those making less than $250,000 a year. ... Her chief rival Bernie Sanders said he wants to move to a "Medicare for all" health-care system under which taxes would increase for many middle-class Americans. But Sanders argued the overall cost of care would go down for most people by "thousands of dollars" because they would no longer pay premiums or co-pays

    Disputes over surgeons running more than one operating room have erupted at hospitals across the country in recent years, some of them long before double-booked surgeries became a divisive issue inside Massachusetts General Hospital - divisions that burst into public view after a Spotlight Team report this fall. The conflicts were, at the time, treated as local and separate events, and simultaneous surgery remained unknown to much of the public even though it is widely practiced. Now, in the wake of the Mass. General controversy - which led to the dismissal of the hospital's leading critic of double-booking and ongoing federal and state investigations - the world's largest surgeons' organization is considering new guidelines for overlapping surgery, and numerous hospitals are examining their own policies
    FDA Proposes Ban On Indoor Tanning For Minors  
    Anyone under the age of 18 would be barred from using indoor tanning equipment, under a federal proposal to help reduce skin cancer linked to the devices. The Food and Drug Administration also wants to require tanning bed users to sign consent forms acknowledging the risks of the radiation-emitting devices. Tanning salons and other businesses would have to collect the forms from customers before their first tanning session and every six months thereafter. 
    In the latest government blow against rampant Medicare fraud, two doctors and a registered nurse in New Orleans were given stiff prison sentences and millions of dollars in fines this week in federal court for their roles in a long-term $50 million scheme. The trio and a fourth defendant were convicted of submitting roughly 8,000 fraudulent Medicare claims over a six-year period for referring patients to Memorial Home Health Inc. and three other "sham companies" for "medically unnecessary" home health services and treatment, according to a federal indictment reported by The Times-Picayune. In many cases, the treatments were never rendered 
    State News
    Open enrollment for coverage through the Health Insurance
    Marketplace runs through Jan. 31, 2016. Enroll by Jan. 15 if you want coverage to start Feb. 1. The Dec. 15 deadline was for those who wanted coverage to kick in Jan. 1. You can still sign up now.Go to www.ChooseHealthDE.com for more information and to connect to www.HealthCare.gov, where you can shop for coverage and see what financial assistance you might get to lower your monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs. Eighty-four percent of Delawareans received financial help in 2015.
    At ChooseHealthDE.com, you'll find a list of certified agents and brokers who can help individuals and businesses apply and enroll.
    To be ready to enroll, bring birthdates and Social Security numbers of those applying for coverage; paystubs; W-2 Forms/other information about your family's income; policy/member numbers for any current health coverage; and information about health coverage from a job that's available to you or your family.

    Free in-person enrollment assistance is available at the locations below:
    Chatman LLC, (302) 685-2379, www.chatmanllc.org
    Widener University School of Law, Clinic Wing, Room 257, 4601 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 
    9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    Newark Free Library, 750 Library Ave, Newark, noon to 4 p.m.
    Smyrna State Service Center, 200 S. Dupont Blvd., Suite 101, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Wilmington Police Athletic League (P.A.L.), 3707 N. Market St., Wilmington, 3:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

    Widener University School of Law, Clinic Wing, Room 257, 4601 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    Milford State Service Center, 253 NE Front St., 9 a.m. to noon
    First State Community Action Agency, 308 Railroad Ave., Georgetown. 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
    A.I. du Pont Hospital/Nemours, 1600 Rockland Rd., Wilmington, 9 a.m. to noon
    Elsmere Library, 30 Spruce Ave., noon to 4 p.m.       
    Pyle State Service Center, 34314 Pyle Center Rd., Frankford, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
    Division of Motor Vehicles, 2230 Hessler Blvd., New Castle, 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    Carroll's Plaza, Blue Hen Corporate Center, 655 S. Bay Road, Dover 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
    Bear Library, 101 Governors Place, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
    Nanticoke Hospital, 801 Middleford Rd., Seaford, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
    Widener University School of Law, Clinic Wing, Room 257, 4601 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

    Westside Family Healthcare, (302) 472-8655 in New Castle County, (302) 678-2205 in Kent and Sussex. www.Westsidehealth.org
    Nanticoke Memorial Hospital, 801 Middleford Rd., Seaford, 9 a.m. to noon 
    Seaford Library, 600 N Market St., Seaford, 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
    Westside Family Healthcare, 27 Marrows Rd., Newark, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
    Division of Motor Vehicles, 303 Transportation Circle, Dover, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
    Department of Labor's Division of Employment and Training, Blue Hen Corporate Center, 655 S. Bay Rd., Dover, 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. 
    Westside Family Healthcare, 1020 Forrest Ave., Dover, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
    Henrietta Johnson Medical Center, (302) 655-6187, www.hjmc.org
    601 New Castle Avenue, Wilmington, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    600 N. Lombard St., Wilmington, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
    3301 Green St., Claymont, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    601 New Castle Ave., Wilmington, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

    La Red Health Center, 302-752-3400 (Georgetown), 302-752-3450 (Seaford), www.laredhealthcenter.org
    Monday through Wednesday
    21444 Carmean Way, Georgetown, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. 
    300 High St., Seaford, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Brandywine Women's Health Associates, (302) 658-8545, www.brandywinewomenshealth.com
    Maryland Health Connection today launched its "Health Yeah!" campaign to promote the ongoing open enrollment for the state's marketplace for health coverage. The "Health Yeah!" television and radio commercials will air across the state. They feature Paris Jordan, 26, an enrollment navigator who works in Baltimore County for HealthCare Access Maryland (HCAM), and Lionize, a Silver Spring-based rock band. Two of its members receive health coverage through Maryland Health Connection. Digital and print advertising will also appear across Maryland, targeted to the uninsured. The TV ad is available on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bULfC7- mhXc The ads emphasize that more than 1,500 trained experts like Ms. Jordan provide free assistance to help Marylanders sign up for coverage. The experts can be found at MarylandHealthConnection.gov. The commercials also stress that of the 700,000 people who enrolled through the state's marketplace in 2015, nine of every 10 received assistance to lower or waive the cost of coverage. "We're excited about the new campaign," said Carolyn Quattrocki, executive director of the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange, which operates Maryland Health Connection. "We especially hope that people who were on the fence about getting 2 covered the past year or two are encouraged to check out the plans and prices on our website. We also very much want young people to enroll. Even if you're healthy, you can't take that for granted." The ads will be concentrated leading up to two major deadlines: Dec. 15, which is the last day that people can enroll for coverage to begin Jan. 1, and Jan. 31, which concludes open enrollment for 2016 coverage. After that, people would require a qualifying "life change" event such as job loss, divorce or birth of a child to be eligible to enroll. For those who qualify for Medicaid coverage, new enrollments are accepted year-round. 

    Maryland Health Connection Enrollment Events

    Region Day Date Time Location
    (listed are those coming up)

    1/9/2016        10 am - 2 pm
    TownMall of Westminster 400 North Center St., Westminster, MD 21157
    Central - Anne Arundel

    1/16/2015       10 am - 2 pm
    DoubleTree Annapolis
    210 Holiday Court,
    Annapolis, MD 21401
    Lower Shore - Somerset

    1/16/2016      10am-2pm
    Somerset County Civic Center
    11828 Crisfield Lane, Princess Anne, MD, 21853
    Lower Shore - Wicomico

    1/23/2016      10am-2pm
    Wicomico Youth and Civic Center, 500 Glen Ave., Salisbury, MD 21804
    Southern Region will have extended and Saturday hours throughout open enrollment.
    Finance & Business
    Nearly 20 years after videoconferencing technology has been available for health services, fewer than 1 percent of Medicare beneficiaries use it. Anthem and a University of Pittsburgh Medical Center health plan in western Pennsylvania are the only two Medicare Advantage insurers offering the virtual visits, and the traditional Medicare program has tightly limited telemedicine payments to certain rural areas. And even there, the beneficiary must already be at a clinic, a rule that often defeats the goal of making care more convenient.

    By a vote of 318 to 109, the House on Thursday approved the tax-cut package, which will add more than a half-trillion dollars to the deficit, and supporters and critics alike said that the bill represented Mr. Ryan's deeply held belief that tax cuts ultimately pay for themselves by fostering economic growth. The measure would postpone some key components of the Affordable Care Act, by delaying, for example, the so-called Cadillac tax on high-cost, employer-sponsored health plans. 
    Latest News on ACA

    Anything you can do to help raise awareness in your region or community about the deadline will make a difference. Below are a few ideas for what you can do: 

    o   Earned Media: Today is the perfect day to make sure newspapers and local outlets in your community know about the December 15 deadline. Call or email reporters, radio hosts and producers and share information about why it's important to make people aware of this opportunity to sign up for coverage. Senior officials at the Department of Health and Human Services are available for interviews. If an outlet in your region is interested in setting up an interview with a senior official, email the CMS Newsroom or call 202-690-6145.

    o   Email Your List: One of the most effective ways to help encourage people to sign up is to send an email with the facts and reminders, from a trusted, local voice. Reach out to partners and groups in your community and region that have strong email lists, and encourage them to send a note to their subscribers with a reminder about the deadline. 

    o   Here to Help: We know that access to free, confidential, local help is important to people looking to sign up for coverage. Make sure people in your region or community know where to find local help by promoting enrollment assistance centers and events and by encouraging people to visit LocalHelp.HealthCare.gov. To raise awareness about the help being offered around the country, the #HeretoHelp social media campaign provides great examples of campaign materials and other information.

    o   Social Media: Share information about the deadline on Facebook and Twitter, and encourage partners and groups in your community or region to do the same.

    The third open enrollment for Maryland's state-based marketplace for health coverage begins Nov. 1 with a wide network of consumer assistance workers to help provide greater in-person help for consumers, a more mobile-friendly website and a streamlined application process.
    "Tens of thousands of people now have health coverage who didn't before without worry about pre-existing conditions," said Carolyn Quattrocki, executive director of the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange. "And it's important to note that nine of every 10 people covered through MarylandHealthConnection.gov received some type of financial help to offset the cost of premiums."
    "We've talked to hundreds of consumers, stakeholders and medical and insurance professionals around the state since the last open enrollment," she said, "and with their input, we've made many improvements to the process for this third year of the marketplace. We're looking forward to another successful open enrollment."
    In 2015, more than 700,000 Marylanders enrolled through Maryland Health Connection in its second year, including 120,000 in private health insurance plans and more than 600,000 in Medicaid.
    Improvements and highlights for 2016 include:
    1.      In-person assistance: More than 1,500 trained experts are available across the state to provide free assistance in enrolling. A list of "connector entity" (regional consumer assistance) offices and hours can be found on MarylandHealthConnection.gov as well as searchable tools to locate participating brokers and navigators nearest you.
    2.      Enrollment fairs: A list of events featuring assisters ready to enroll consumers at major venues across the state can be found at MarylandHealthConnection.gov and will be publicized throughout open enrollment.
    3.      Financial support: Nine in 10 Marylanders qualified for financial help to help lower or even waive the cost of health coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act, Marylanders who are not eligible for qualifying health coverage, such as affordable employer-sponsored coverage or a government program such as Medicaid, may apply for an Advanced Premium Tax Credit, or APTC, to offset the cost of monthly insurance premiums. Individuals who have an annual income of less than $47,080 or a family of four whose household income is less than $97,000 may qualify for coverage with financial assistance that begins Jan. 1, 2016, for example. In 2015, more than 60,000 Maryland households have received more than $190 million in tax credits -- an average of more than $3,000 per family --to help reduce the cost of health coverage.
    4.      Website improvements, including a streamlined application, a more mobile-friendly website and more information resources. The site also features a star system to rate the quality of plans. The rating system was produced by the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange with the Maryland Health Care Commission and applies only to Maryland plans.
    5.      Simpler renewal: Most Marylanders who enrolled in a qualified health plan through Maryland Health Connection for 2015 coverage will be renewed automatically in the same plan or a similar plan if their plan has changed.  If they received a subsidy in 2015, in most cases if their income hasn't changed much they will receive a similar one in 2016. Even if they were enrolled this year, consumers may want to shop and compare plan prices since some have increased in price and others have decreased. They may save hundreds of dollars by doing so.
    6.      Small business coverage: The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) is open to businesses with 50 or fewer full-time-equivalent employees. The program offers a two-year tax credit to help offset costs for qualifying businesses and more coverage options to offer employees.
    7.      New dental plans: For 2016, Marylanders can enroll online in a dental-only plan or enroll in dental at the same time they enroll in a health plan. Maryland Health Connection offers family and child-only dental plans - 19 plans in all from six participating dental insurers.
    8.      Enhanced links to brokers: In a pilot program, select brokers will be linked directly through the call center in the Broker Assistance Transfer pilot program known as the "BATPhone." Brokers are the only consumer assistance workers who can recommend a specific plan to consumers based on individual needs.
    9.      Coverage is better than a penalty: For 2016, the federal tax penalty for lacking coverage is 2.5 percent of gross household income over the federal income tax filing threshold, or $695 per individual - whichever is greater. That is up from the 2015 penalty of 2 percent of gross household income over the tax filing threshold or $325 per individual. It makes sense to get coverage for your money instead of paying a penalty and not having any. The law provides certain exemptions, including for people below a certain income and those who are without coverage for fewer than three months. The penalty is designed to prompt healthier people to get coverage to keep premium levels sustainable as insurers are now forbidden from turning away applicants due to existing health problems. More people covered also reduces the shared cost of uncompensated care.
    10.  Don't miss the deadline(s): Coverage will begin on Jan. 1 for enrollments completed by Dec. 15, 2015.  Enrollments completed Dec. 16-Jan. 15 will have coverage beginning Feb. 1, 2016. Enrollments completed Jan. 16-Jan. 31, the last day of open enrollment, will have coverage beginning March 1, 2016. 

    Marketplace Call Center and SHOP Call Center Hours
    Health Insurance Marketplace Call Center: For customer service support, to start or finish an application, compare plans, enroll or ask a question. 1-800-318-2596 (TTY: 1-855-889-4325).  Available 24/7. Closed Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.
    SHOP Call Center: For customer service support, including assisting employers and employees apply for and enroll in SHOP. 1-800-706-7893 (TTY: 711).  Available M-F 9:00 am-7:00 pm EST. 
    MACHC Conference Call Updates
    Due to technical difficulties on Enroll America's Webinar system, the Faith Engagement webinar is now scheduled for Friday, January 8, 2016 at 1 pm. Please find registration details under MACHC Happenings heading.
    How can you Ramp Up Outreach & Enrollment Efforts during this Crucial Time?!
    • Leverage Social Media to Get the Word out for Your Health Center:
    • Host Local Meetings with other community advocates and faith-based groups
    • BuildYour Grassroots OE Community Advocate Network
    • Use the Local Media to Tell Your Health Center Story (local newspapers!)

    Join MACHC's next Outreach & Enrollment Call ON FRIDAY, January 15th!  
    As the new enrollment season kicks off, there will be a significant increase in consumers pouring in for assistance. During this time, it remains vital for Outreach & Enrollment staff to attend the Outreach & Enrollment calls we host to share the latest on the trends, barriers and share best practices. Remember, this is the way we can all be aware of State affairs, assist more seamlessly and learn from each other. Have a representative from your FQHC present on the call if your schedule does not permit attendance. 

    Maryland--Call Center Note:
    Direct Line for Navigators and CAC to MHBE Call Center--Regarding the Call Center # 844-224-6762 It should be noted that: If you need customer assistance from the call center, CAC's should call this number.
    Grants & Funding Opportunities

    FY 2016 Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP), Integrated HIV Planning Implementation FOA -

    HRSA is accepting applications for FY 2016 RWHAP Integrated HIV Planning Implementation Cooperative Agreement (HRSA-16-082). The purpose of this FOA is to fund a Cooperative Agreement to provide technical assistance support activities and strategies related to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/HRSA Integrated HIV Prevention and Care Plan, including the Statewide Coordinated Statement of Need.

    The HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) will host a pre-application technical assistance webinar on Wednesday, January 6, 2016 from 3:00pm - 4:00pm, ET to highlight the purpose of this FOA and provide application information. 

    View the webinar the day of the session

    Connect to the audio using 1-888-469-1573; Participant passcode: 5798313


    Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Funding to Connect Kids to Coverage (CMS-1ZO-16-001) 
    CMS announced the availability of $32 million in funding to support efforts to help eligible children sign up for health coverage under Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and help them stay covered for as long as they qualify. Proposals are due by Wednesday, January 20, 2016. 

    Funded! Now What? Webinar Archive 

    NACHC released this archived webinar focused on what Health Center Program grantees need to do to become operational within 120 days of receiving their Notice of Award using the "Funded! Now What?" publication as the guide. 

    Service Area Competition (SAC) Funding Opportunity Announcement May 1, 2016 Starts  PHC released the FY 2016 SAC funding opportunity announcement (HRSA-16-007) for service areas with a May 1, 2016, project period start date. 
    Applications are due to Grants.gov by 11:59pm, ET on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 and in HRSA's Electronic Handbooks (EHB) by 5:00pm, ET on Thursday, December 17, 2015. Technical assistance materials are available on the SAC technical assistance website.

    Fiscal Year 2016 MAERDAF Grant
    For FY16 the Maryland Agricultural Education and Rural Development Assistance Fund (MAERDAF) Grant received $167,000 in funding.  During this grant cycle, the Rural Maryland Council received 53 applications with requests amounting to over $850,000.
    The MAERDAF Grant Review Board made full or partial grant awards to 16 organizations.  The Grant Review Board was created in statute and consists of Secretaries of the Departments of Agriculture, Business and Economic Development, Housing and Community Development, Health and Mental Hygiene, and Natural Resources or their designees.
    Administered by the Rural Maryland Council, MAERDAF provides grants to rural-serving nonprofit organizations that promote statewide and regional planning, economic and community development, and agricultural and forestry education.  Also eligible are rural community colleges that support small and agricultural businesses through enhanced training and technical assistance.
    MAERDAF's goal is to increase the overall capacity of rural-serving nonprofit organizations and community colleges to meet a multitude of rural development challenges and to help them establish new public/private partnerships for leveraging non-state sources of funding.

    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.

    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.

    Rural Health Funding Opportunities
    Walmart Foundation Community Grant Program
    Application deadline: Dec 31, 2015
    Grants to support the needs of local communities in the areas of hunger, nutrition, women's economic empowerment, career opportunities, and sustainability.

    Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grants to community collaborations and initiatives that have used shared data and information to increase their capacity for planning, implementing, and evaluating health improvement activities. These community collaborations would be part of a nationwide learning collaborative that would create a cadre of lessons learned and promising practices.

    Community Response Fund
    The Community Response Fund supports organizations, activities, and events that address access to needed oral healthcare 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.
    DEADLINE: ongoing basis
    ELIGABILITY: The DentaQuest Foundation makes grants to a variety of organizations that are engaged improving oral health. Grants are not made to individuals.
    CONTACT: Matthew Bond, Grants and Programs Manager: Matthew.Bond@DentaQuestFoundation.org 

    340B Peer-to-Peer Program
    The purpose of the 340B Peer-to-Peer Network is to connect 340B entities and stakeholders with high performing sites, called leading practice sites that have exemplary 340B pharmacy service offerings. These sites serve as guides for covered entities that are interested in improving patient care. This approach provides the opportunity for practice sites to reach their peers and strengthen the 340B program from inventory management to quality care initiatives.
    Sites that receive the status of a 340B Peer-to-Peer recognized site will be asked to dedicate two members of their team to share their expertise and leading practices - for a limited amount of time per month - with other safety-net organizations to help these organizations achieve results and establish sound business practices.
    FUNDING AVALIABLE: Peer-to-Peer annual stipends of $10,000/year
    ELIGABILITY: Applications must be submitted by a 340B entity listed on the Office of Pharmacy Affairs (OPA) 340B database as a participating 340B entity.
    Healthcare Connect Fund
    The Healthcare Connect Fund provides funding to healthcare providers for telecommunications and internet access services, as well as network equipment, at a flat discounted rate of 65%. Participants can apply as a member of the consortium or a stand-alone entity.
    FUNDING AVAILABLE: Participants will receive a flat rate discount of 65%. There is an annual spending cap of $400,000,000.
    ELIGIBLITY: Rural public or nonprofit healthcare providers (HCPs) are eligible. Consortia may be comprised of both rural and non-rural HCPs. All consortia must consist of more than 50% rural participation within three years of receipt of the first funding commitment obtained through the HCF Program. Connections to, and equipment located at, eligible off-site data centers and administrative offices are eligible for support.
    CONTACT: rhc-assist@usac.org

    USAC Rural Health Care Telecommunications Program
    Health care providers are permitted to apply to receive reduced rates for a variety of telecommunications services under the Rural Health Care Program. Health care providers may seek support for multiple telecommunications services of any bandwidth and for monthly Internet service charges.
    FUNDING AVALIABLE: The level of support depends on the HCP's location and the type of service chosen. Health Care Providers are permitted to apply to receive reduced rates for a variety of telecommunication services under the RHCD program. HCPs may seek support for multiple telecommunications services of any bandwidth.

    As a result of recent Federal Communications Commission (FCC) action, health care participants may be eligible to receive a 25% discount on their monthly Internet service charges. These services are limited to the monthly Internet net access charge, monthly charges for web hosting and web addresses.
    ELIGIBILITY: Community health centers or health centers providing health care to migrants
    CONTACT: rhc-admin@universalservice.org

    Wells Fargo Corporate Giving Programs
    Wells Fargo supports nonprofit organizations that work on a community level in the areas of human services, arts and culture, community development, civic responsibility, education, environmental consciousness, and volunteerism.
    CONTACT: Ashley Williams -- Community Support Rep -- Wells Fargo

    Maryland Small Grants Program
    The Maryland Small Grants Program awards funding to nonprofit organizations that provide direct services to poor and vulnerable populations.
    FUNDING AVALIABLE: Award Ceiling: $50,000
    CONTACT: Amy Kleine, Program Director, Basic Human Needs
    410-654-8500, ext. 268
    Email: akleine@hjweinberg.org

    Accelerating Community-Centered Approaches in Health
    Accelerating Community-Centered Approaches in Health will support innovative population health programs and policies that work to improve health at the community level, including the use of new financial models to achieve cost effective solutions.
    CONTACT: Phone: 248.643.9630

    Commonwealth Fund Health Grants
    The Commonwealth Fund promotes a high performing healthcare system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society's most vulnerable, including people with low-incomes, the uninsured, minority Americans, young children, people with disabilities, and the elderly.
    The Fund supports independent research on healthcare issues and makes grants to improve healthcare practice and policy. The Commonwealth Fund actively seeks to support projects on innovative approaches to addressing problems within its areas of focus.
    CONTACT: Email: grants@cmwf.org
    Phone: 212.606.3800

    USDA Community Facilities Loan and Grant Program
    The USDA Community Facilities Loan and Grant Program provides loans, grants, and loan guarantees for essential community facilities in rural areas. Priority is given to healthcare, education, and public safety projects. Funds may be used to construct, enlarge, or improve facilities.
    AVALIABLE FUNDING: Amount varies. Grants are authorized on a graduated scale. Applicants located in small communities with low populations and low incomes will receive a higher percentage of grants.
    CONTACT: Bill McGowan, State Director
    1221 College Park Drive, Suite 200
    Dover, DE  19904
    Voice: (302) 857-3580 www.rd.usda.gov/de
    PCMH Corner 
    No New Updates at this time: Come back next Week for more!

    Clinical Quality 
    How to Deal with Disruptive Patients in the Health Center with Minimal Disruption
    February 4, 2016    3:00 PM Estimated Length:1 hour, 30 minutes
    Disruptive patient behavior, with escalation to violence, is becoming an increasing concern fo rmany health centers. In these situations, it can often be unclear about the center's legal authority to redefine, set limits on, or even terminate their professional relationship with the patient.  In this webinar, the first in our three part workplace violence series, we will not only address how to deal with disruptive and difficult patients in the health center, the policies and procedures you need to have in place, but also the process by which you can terminate a patient from the health center.  
    Health Observances This Week

    National Influenza Vaccination Week
    December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month
    According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 251,700 toy-related injuries in 2010 throughout the United States. 72% were to people less than 15 years of age. Additionally, in 2007 alone, toymakers recalled over 19 million toys worldwide because of safety concerns such as lead paint and small magnets.
    When it comes to toys and gifts, the excitement and desire to get your children their favorite toys may cause shoppers to forget about safety factors associated with them. Before you make these purchases, it is critical to remember to consider the safety and age range of the toys.
    Prevent Blindness America has declared December as Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month.  The group encourages everyone to consider if the toys they wish to give suits the age and individual skills and abilities of the individual child who will receive it,especially for infants and children under age three.
    This holiday season (and beyond), please consider the following guidelines for choosing safe toys for all ages:
    • Inspect all toys before purchasing. Avoid those that shoot or include parts that fly off. The toy should have no sharp edges or points and should be sturdy enough to withstand impact without breaking, being crushed, or being pulled apart easily.
    • When purchasing toys for children with special needs try to:  Choose toys that may appeal to different senses such as sound, movement, and texture; consider interactive toys to allow the child to play with others; and think about the size of the toy and the position a child would need to be in to play with it. Consult the "AblePlay" website at http://www.ableplay.org/ for more information.
    • Be diligent about inspecting toys your child has received. Check them for age, skill level, and developmental appropriateness before allowing them to be played with.
    • Look for labels that assure you the toys have passed a safety inspection - "ATSM" means the toy has met the American Society for Testing and Materials standards.
    • Gifts of sports equipment should always be accompanied by protective gear (give a helmet with the skateboard)
    • Keep kids safe from lead in toys by:  Educating yourself about lead exposure from toys, symptoms of lead poisoning, and what kinds of toys have been recalled; being aware that old toys may be more likely to contain lead in the paint; having your children wash their hands frequently and calling your doctor if you suspect your child has been exposed to lead. Consult the last two websites listed below for more information.
    • Do NOT give toys with small parts (including magnets and "button" batteries which can cause serious injury or death if ingested) to young children as they tend to put things in their mouths, increasing the risk of choking. If the piece can fit inside a toilet paper roll, it is not appropriate for kids under age three.
    • Do NOT give toys with ropes and cords or heating elements
    • Do NOT give crayons and markers unless they are labeled "nontoxic".
    For more information:

    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 |