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

Only 6 more days of Open Enrollment! Time to ramp up efforts for this last final push!
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. 

January 25, 2016

MACHC prays that you all have been safe and warm during the Storm #Jonas2016. As we bid farewell to Jonas and prepare for Operations, if there is any way your Health Center was impacted, please inform us! 
(see Emergency Preparedness section below)


 Outreach & Enrollment Call 
Friday, February 5, 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.

(2) MACHC Board Retreat
Thursday & Friday, February 18-19, 2016 at Tidewater Inn
Please contact Deitra Bell at deitra@machc.com for additional details.

(3) Policy & Issues (P&I) Forum is OPEN! March 16-20, 2016 in Washington, D.C.
Join MACHC and your FQHC colleagues from across the state and country to get the most up-to-date information and tools to stay ahead, competitive and ready for another year of health center advocacy.


  • (1) 
    Defensa de los centros de salud - Spanish-language advocacy webinar on 1/27 at 3PM ET
    Wednesday, January 27, 2016 3:00 pm  Register Here

    (2) Webinar Series:  Population Health Management
    and Health Systems Transformation
    to Insure Value Based Care 

    January 28-March 10, 2016
    NACHC, along with Shannon Nielson, VP of Consulting Services at Centerprise, Inc., is proud to present a five-part webinar series on Population Health Management and Health Systems Transformation to Ensure Value Based Care. The emphasis will be on helping PCAs and HCCNs understand the necessary components for success within Population Health Management at a state level as well as an introduction to how health centers approach these same concepts.  The focus of this webinar series is to partner with PCAs and Health Center Controlled Networks to operationalize the principles of health system transformation and integrated clinical networks to position health centers strongly in a managed care environment.

    Webinar 1 - Fundamentals of Value Based Care
    Date/Time:  Thursday, January 28th, 2016 | 12pm -1pm Eastern
    Register Now

    Webinar 2 - Actionable Data to Drive System Change
    Date/Time: Thursday, February 4th, 2016 | 12pm -1pm Eastern
    Register Now

    Webinar 3 - Optimizing Care Coordination to Manage Risk
    Date/Time: Thursday, February 18th, 2016 | 12pm -1pm Eastern
    Register Now

    Webinar 4 - Health Center Case Studies
    Date/Time: Thursday, March 3rd, 2016 | 12pm -1pm Eastern
    Register Now

    Webinar 5 - Alternative Payment Models and Systems
    Date/Time:  Thursday, March 10th, 2016 | 12pm -1pm Eastern
    Register Now

    Critical Skills for Activating Self-Management Webcast - Thursday, February 4, 2016, 2:00pm - 3:00pm, ET 
    The SAMHSA-HRSA Center for Integrated Health Solutions is hosting this webcast to teach the key steps to activating self-management, particularly for chronic conditions, among the people your organization serves. Learn More.

    (4) National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Virtual Job Fair for Indian Health Service and Tribal Health Clinic Sites- Tuesday, February 9, 2016, 6:45pm - 10:00pm, ET - The NHSC is hosting a job fair for IHS and Tribal sites to promote vacancies to primary health care providers interested in serving communities with limited access to health care. More here.

    Apr 10 - 12, 2016
    Cambridge, MD 
    Type: Conference/Meeting
    Sponsoring organization: Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center

    (6) Practice Operations Management, Level II(POM II) Training 
    April 20-21, 2016 | Charlotte, NC
    NACHC is pleased to present the Health Center Practice Operations Management Training - Level II (POM II). POM II offers health center Chief Operating Officers, Practice/Clinic and other managers, and Board Members an opportunity to learn and apply the critical management and leadership skills necessary to optimize performance. This training features a multidimensional approach to effective management and continuous improvement the areas in the health center: profitability, staffing, and patient workflow.

    (7) An In-Depth Look at FTCA Coverage for Health Centers.  Learn More
    Nashville, TN - May 4 & 5, 2016
    Philadelphia, PA - June 7 & 8, 2016
    Operating a health center within the confines of the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) has never been more challenging. The myriad requirements and involvement of various agencies coupled with increased accountability and responsibility can make providing health care services to your patients a risky proposition. This training provides information from trusted and experienced health center attorneys, Marty Bree, Molly Evans, and Matthew Freedus, who for years have provided advice and counsel on the day-to-day issues that arise around FTCA at health centers.
    Emergency Preparedness Events: 

    ***Health Center Incident Report Form (click on title for downloadable copy)
    Storm Jonas has come and gone, but many of our health centers have been affected by the storm. Please find an attached Incident Report Form where your health center should report any damages or loss caused by the event. Send this form to Aneeqa Chowdhury at aneeqa@machc.com no later than COB Tuesday, January 26, 2016.

    The Health Alert Network (HAN) issued notification on recognizing, managing, and reporting Zika virus infections in travelers returning from Central America, South America, the Caribbean, and Mexico.  Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites with the most common symptoms being fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis.  It can also be transmitted from mother to newborn if infected near the time of delivery. The CDC has provided recommendations for health care providers and public health practitioners on their website as well as testing information.

    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 will be leaving end of Jan, 2016; new Coordinator TBA
    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 on this year's Emergency Preparedness Plan. The tentative goal for us is to 1.) increase participation at DHMH Regional Meetings (Have you signed the MOUs?)  2.) Conduct two Tabletop exercises this year. The focus of our exercises this year will be mass care, natural disaster and pathogen illnesses 3) ICS400 and 700 Webinar Trainings

    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
    DHS Offering Training on New Electronic Provider Enrollment Application - REGISTER HERE
    The Department of Human Services (DHS) is offering training via an Internet virtual classroom on the new Electronic Provider Enrollment User Interface.  The training will last approximately two hours and a PowerPoint presentation will be available in the virtual classroom for download to use during and after the session.  The Electronic Provider Enrollment User Interface will allow providers to complete their PA Medical Assistance enrollment application and revalidation applications online, effective January 29, 2016.  Plan to participate in one of the training sessions:
    • Tuesday, January 26, 2016 - 9:00 am to 11:00 am
    • Tuesday, January 26, 2016 - 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
    • Wednesday, January 27, 2016- 9:00 am to 11:00 am
    • Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
    UDS Report Due February 15
    The Uniform Data Systems (UDS) report is due Feb.15 for all community, migrant, homeless, and public housing health centers. This includes new starts funded prior to October 15, 2015. 
    Assistance is available by calling 1-866-UDS-HELP, 8:30 am - 5:30 pm ET, Monday - Friday) or e-mail UDSHelp330@bphcdata.net.
    Republican senators charged Thursday that the Obama administration had missed warning signs of financial distress at nonprofit health insurance cooperatives that failed last year, but a top federal official denied that the government had been negligent in its supervision. The co-ops were created with federal money under the Affordable Care Act. Democrats hoped the co-ops would increase competition in state insurance markets, creating additional choices for consumers and holding down premiums. But 12 of the 23 co-ops have shut down.

    FQHC Behavioral Health Encounters
    Department of Human Services (DHS) policy only permits behavioral health (BH) visits with a psychiatrist, licensed clinical psychologist or licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) as eligible as an FQHC BH encounter and eligible for PPS payment.  While the costs of other BH providers, like licensed social workers (LSWs), may be included in a health center's cost reports and are therefore included in calculation of a health center's PPS rate, visits to these non-qualifying individuals cannot be billed at PPS, nor may those visits be included in a health center's encounters.  DHS has retained this policy in the current HealthChoices payment transition.  Effective Jan. 1, 2016, DHS is requiring HealthChoices managed care organizations (MCOs) to pay health centers at PPS for eligible BH encounters; conversely, DHS is prohibiting HealthChoices MCOs from paying for visits with non-qualifying BH providers. PACHC has submitted a formal recommendation to DHS urging them to expand the types of BH professionals eligible for FQHC PPS reimbursement to include licensed professional counselors (LPC) and licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFT), as they have clinical qualifications and scope of practice similar to those of currently eligible BH providers.  We will make health centers aware if DHS changes policy based on our recommendation.  However, it is important to note that even if DHS amends its policy, other BH providers, like LSWs, would not be included because they do not exercise independent medical judgment and would therefore remain ineligible for billing at the PPS rate and inclusion in health center encounter counts.

    DHS Decisions Pending on Dental Payment
    As reported in an earlier issue of this publication, the Department of Human Services (DHS) received many questions from HealthChoices
    managed care organizations (MCOs) when it hosted a call regarding the new requirement that MCOs pay FQHCs/RHCs at your PPS rates.  DHS is finalizing an FAQ document which has been delayed pending decisions on the appropriate processes for ensuring PPS payment for dental, and specifically what code to use.  DHS indicated that health centers should bill the services rendered until DHS can provide guidance on how to bill the PPS rate to dental subcontractors. DHS plans to provide guidance to the dental plans on the code to be used for billing by the end of January.

    Patients not feeling well who want quick and easy access to a health care provider now have a new option in Washington stateMultiCare eCare is a simple online diagnosis and treatment service for common health conditions. MultiCare eCare connects patients to clinicians via email or text at an inexpensive flat fee, making health care more affordable and accessible to anyone with a web-enabled device.
    U.S. Lags Behind Other Countries In Reducing Stillbirths 
    Stillbirth remains largely hidden from society, and the tragic loss of a fetus late in pregnancy remains far too common. ... In the U.S., the stillbirth rate is 3 per 1,000 births, putting it 22nd among 186 countries. What's more, that rate has barely budged in 15 years, declining just 0.4 percent. That's slower progress than was seen in all but a handful of countries. In sheer numbers, that means there were 11,260 stillbirths last year in the U.S., if you use the World Health Organization's definition: fetal death after 28 weeks of pregnancy

    The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) has announced a funding opportunity of up to $157 million to test whether screening beneficiaries for health-related social needs and associated referrals to and navigation of community-based services will improve quality and affordability in Medicare and Medicaid. The five-year program, called the Accountable Health Communities Model, is the first Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center model to focus on the health-related social needs of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, including building alignment between clinical and community-based services at the local level. 

    Despite years of discussing the issue without resolution, Utah lawmakers will again take on Medicaid expansion and various plans to implement it for the thousands of Utahns who remain uncovered by health insurance. And, while some lawmakers are taking approaches that have been tried before, others are trying new things - an indication of a potential desire to bring health care benefits closer to Utahns who can't afford them.
    State News
    Be familiar with Code Purple sites
    During extreme cold events, Code Purple sites open in houses of worship and community centers. Homeless individuals and families can come out of the cold to sleep and eat hot meals. Many Code Purple sites often need volunteers and donations of money, sleeping supplies, and food. Other items include:
     blankets, cots, and sleeping bags
     towels, wash cloths, hand wipes, sanitizers
     feminine products
     hats, scarves, gloves, hand or feet warmers
     coats, boots, long underwear
     bottled water and instant hot drinks
     frozen meals and ready-to-eat food with easy-opening lids
     garbage bags and disinfectant spray
    To connect with Code Purple resources, call Delaware 2-1-1 or use the Delaware 2-1-1 mobile app, or visit www.delaware211.org.
    Maryland Health Connection Enrollment Events
    Region Day Date Time Location
    (listed are those coming up)
    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
    The average ObamaCare premium rose to $408 per month for 2016 plans, about a 9 percent increase from this time last year, according to a new report from the Department of Health and Human Services. However, 83 percent of ObamaCare enrollees pay far less than $408 because they get tax credits under the healthcare law. The average tax credit for 2016 is $294, meaning that the average share of the premiums that enrollees have to pay is $113. That is up $8 from the $105 people paid on average last year. 

    Are You Ready for Value-Based Payment?
    As the shift from volume-based to value-based payment accelerates, primary care providers, including Community Health Centers , must make critical changes to become ready for these payment changes and ensure financial sustainability. Fortunately, there are resources available to help.  These include:
    • NACHC's Payment Reform Readiness ToolThis tool is designed to begin the conversation among health center leadership and staff about successful engagement in payment reform models.
    • HMA and CohnReznick Free WebinarOn Jan. 27, 1:00 - 2:00 pm webinar, Value-Based Payment Readiness: A Self-Assessment Tool for Primary Care Providers, FQHCs, and Behavioral Health Providers, will demonstrate how an online self-assessment tool can be used to pinpoint specific strengths and gaps in value-based payment readiness and identify core care delivery, operational, and financial capabilities and high-priority elements to implement. The tool was designed by HMA and CohnReznick in partnership with the DC Primary Care Association.
    Latest News on ACA

    Marketplace Webinar Invitation - Webinar Rescheduled due to Inclement Weather

    Due to the impending Winter Storm Jonas in the Washington, DC metro area, the assister webinar originally scheduled for tomorrow, Friday, January 22nd has been rescheduled for next week, Friday, January 29th at the usual time, from 2:00 PM ET to 3:30 PM ET. We will send out the January 29th webinar invitation next week.

    President pushes ObamaCare as enrollment deadline nears
    The president ticked off several metrics on America's current health insurance coverage rates, including the nearly 18 million individuals that have gained coverage since the ACA took effect. "For the first time ever, more than 90 percent of Americans are covered," the president said. "We've done all this while cutting our deficits and keeping health care inflation to its lowest levels in 50 years. And we've begun filling the gaps in employer-based care so that when we change jobs, lose a job, go back to school or start that new business, we can still get coverage."

    The application process for open enrollment in the state starts February 1st. It allows families to send their child to any school district, not just the one where they live.
    Experts say more and more families are going the non-traditional route.
    Whether it's on land, in the water or even things we eat, everywhere you turn at Merrimac Community Charter School there's a different project the kids are working on.

    Open Enrollment Ends in 6 DAYS on January 31
    The  Health Insurance Marketplace Open Enrollment period ends January 31, 2016.  All consumers who are enrolling for the first time or reenrolling must select a plan by January 15 for February 1 coverage or by January 31 for 2016 coverage before open enrollment closes.  Navigators and Assisters are encouraged to make every effort to ensure in-reach and outreach activities are focused on enrollment deadlines for this final enrollment push. 

    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
    We sincerely hope you all found the December series of webinars helpful. If you have any questions or additional comments, please send us an email.

    What would you like to included as part of Maryland & Delaware's Outreach & Enrollment assistance from MACHC? Please send Aneeqa Chowdhury an email at aneeqa@machc.com.

    Join MACHC's next Outreach & Enrollment Call ON FRIDAY, February 5, 2016!  
    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

    Application Deadline: January 25, 2016
    The SDS program promotes diversity in the health professions and nursing workforce.  Up to $650,000 per year will go to eligible schools for awarding scholarships to students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Community Health Centers  may partner with educational institutions that apply for this funding in order to build academic-community partnerships and address long-standing workforce challenges in rural communities.

    Application Deadline:  Letter of Intent by January 29, 2016; Full proposals due March 31, 2016
    Invest Health is a new initiative that brings together diverse leaders from mid-sized U.S. cities across the nation to develop new strategies for increasing and leveraging private and public investments to accelerate improvements in neighborhoods facing the biggest barriers to better health. The program is a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Reinvestment Fund.

    Health Center Controlled Networks Funding Opportunity
    Application Deadline:  February 1, 2016, Grants.gov; March 1, 2016, EHB
    HRSA will award approximately $33 million to 45 health center controlled networks (HCCNs) to support meaningful use of electronic health records, adoption of technology-enabled quality improvement strategies, and engagement in health information exchange, to strengthen the quality of care and improve patient health outcomes achieved by health center Program grantees and look-alikes. Contact the HCCN Team in BPHC at BPHCHCCN@hrsa.gov with questions.

    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

    Nurse Corps Loan Repayment Program - applications due February 25, 2016.  Licensed registered nurses who are employed full time in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) may be eligible to apply for up for payment of up to 60 percent of their nursing student loans in return for a two-year service obligation in a HPSA, and an additional 25 percent of their original loan balance for an optional third year.  Applicants should attend one of two Technical Assistance conference calls on January 28 from 2-4 pm ET and February 11 from 7-9 pm ET.  Dial in 1-888-790-3148 ; passcode 7775191. 

    Rural Health Research Center Cooperative Agreement - applications due March 14, 2016.  FORHP is funding up to seven Rural Health Research Centers to conduct policy-oriented health services research on rural issues and synthesize the issues into publically available policy briefs designed to be easily understood by a non-technical audience.  Applicants can take part in a technical assistance webinar on Wednesday January 27th from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST. 

    Building Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program Capacity - applications due March 22, 2016. Community-based, faith-based and tribal organizations are among those eligible to apply for funding intended to build national capacity for Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP) recipients and engage People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLWH) to increase their access to health care.  Funded organizations will work with HRSA, CMS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to assess and disseminate best practices culturally appropriate methods for improving health outcomes of PLWH.  Interested applicants should attend a technical assistance webinar on Wednesday, January 27 from 3:00 - 4:00 pm ET; go to https://hrsa.connectsolutions.com/coag/ and enter as Guest. To join the audio, dial 888-603-9810  with participant passcode 1165029.  

    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 
    HIPAA -Texting and Emailing   CLICK HERE TO REGISTER
    Date: Tuesday, January 26, 2016 
    Time: 10:00 AM PST | 01:00 PM EST
    This lesson will be going into great detail regarding you practice or business information technology and how it relates to the HIPAA Security Rule, in particular portable devices. Areas covered will be texting, email, encryption, medical messaging, voice data and risk factors as they relate to IT.
    Areas covered in the session:
    • Updates for 2016
    • BYOD
    • Portable devices
    • Business associates and the increased burden
    • Emailing of PHI
    • Texting of PHI
    • Risk factors

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all persons at risk for HIV be vaccinated against hepatitis B, and be tested for the hepatitis B and hepatitis C viruses. An estimated 1.2 million persons are living with HIV in the United States. Of those living with HIV in the United States, about 25 percent are co-infected with the hepatitis C virus, and about 10 percent are co-infected with the hepatitis B virus. 

    The CDC developed five animated videos to explain the different serological tests for hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, hepatitis D, and hepatitis E.
    Health Observances This Week

    National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week (Jan 25-31, 2016)
    What is National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week?
    National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week
    links students with scientists and other experts to counteract the myths about drugs and alcohol that teens get from the internet, TV, movies, music, or from friends. It was launched in 2010 by scientists at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to stimulate educational events in communities so teens can learn what science has taught us about drug abuse and addiction. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism became a partner starting in 2016, and alcohol has been added as a topic area for the week. NIDA and NIAAA are part of the National Institutes of Health.

    What happens during National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week?
    National Drug & Alcohol Facts WeekSM is an opportunity for teens to SHATTER THE MYTHSTM,SM about drugs and drug abuse. In community and school events all over America, teens, scientists and other experts come together for an honest conversation about how drugs affect the brain, body and behavior. In school assemblies, after school clubs, athletic events, and other venues, students are able to ask experts questions about drugs, and discuss NIDA materials designed for teens.
    How can I plan an event for National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week? 
    Check out the National Drug & Alcohol Facts WeekSM Website for more information. NIDA offers an online toolkit with lots of suggestions on how to plan events, how to find experts who can participate, and how to connect with NIDA staffers who can help. The site also tells you how to register your event, and how to get free materials for teens, including the National Drug & Alcohol IQ Challenge quiz, and our popular Drugs: SHATTER THE MYTHS booklet.
    Why Celebrate National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week?
    About a third of high school seniors report using an illicit drug sometime in the past year; about 5 percent of seniors report nonmedical use of potentially addictive prescription pain relievers; and more than 20 percent report smoking marijuana in the past month.  Many teens are not aware of the risks to their health, to their success in school and the dangers while driving under the influence.  When teens are given the scientific facts about drugs, they can be better prepared to make good decisions for themselves and they can share this information with others.
    Who are the Federal Partners for National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week? 
    NIDA and NIAAA have many federal, state and local partners working together to get the facts about drugs to teens in communities all over America. Partners include the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Office of Safe and Healthy Students in the U.S. Department of Education and the Drug Enforcement Administration in the U.S. Department of Justice
    For more information on National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week visit the Web site:http://teens.drugabuse.gov/national-drug-facts-week, email us at drugfacts@nida.nih.gov, or call 301-443-1124.
    National Drug & Alcohol Facts WeekSM, the National Drug & Alcohol Facts WeekSMLogo, and associated trade dress are registered trademarks of the US Department of Health and Human Services. SHATTER THE MYTHS is a trademark and service mark of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    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 |