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

Join Rachel Linstead Goldsmith, Enroll America's Regional Manager and MACHC at the MACHC OE Call on Friday, March 4th for OE3 discussion! 
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. 

February 16, 2016
MACHC Conducting LEAN observations... Have you seen us at your Health Center, yet? (If interested, please request TA) 
Lean training teaches you how to reduce waste and increase efficiency for your
organization. So remember, if you see MACHC staff at your health center, we are simply recording cycle time and may ask you a few questions at your leisure about bottlenecks. Our aim is to mitigate bottlenecks so health centers can operate as efficie
ntly as possible. We also make sure to stay out of your way and never step inside the patient roo ms with your staff (no HIPPA violations).
*If you have been asked to complete the brief 5 question survey, please submit it ASAP.

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

Outreach & Enrollment Call 
Friday, March 4, 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.

(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) Using Technology to Enhance Addiction Treatment
    Thursday, February 25 3-4:30pm EST REGISTER HERE
    Tele-behavioral health and other technology-based treatment and recovery supports can assist primary care safety net providers and addiction treatment providers in expanding their efforts, particularly in rural areas where workforce, resources and people are scarce. Join this webinar, co-hosted by the SAMHSA-HRSA Center for Integrated Health Solutions and the American Telemedicine Association, to explore a variety of the latest technology-based interventions for delivery of addictions treatment and recovery services in safety-net settings. Bring your questions for provider and tele-health expert presenters and be ready to discuss challenges to implementation and the opportunities and key policy developments for using technology-based interventions in safety-net settings to expand workforce capacity.

    (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 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

    (3)  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

    (5) 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.

    (6) 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: 
    Zika Virus: Approaches to Managing the Epidemic
    Tuesday February 23, 2016 2:00 PM EST 
    This link will go live 30 min prior to the event time of 2:00 PM EST, February 23, 2016.
    This webcast is pending for up to 1.0 Prescribed credits by the American Academy of Family Physicians.
    The session will be facilitated virtually via the Blackboard Collaborate Application. 
    Please ensure that you are able to launch the application on your organization's server by using the links below to download Blackboard, the instructions
    for installing, and the most recent version of Java (required to run application). 
    If you encounter any difficulty with the Blackboard platform, 
    please contact our support team at 1-212-382-0699 ext. 243.

    More than 200 people died in hospitals and nursing homes in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, leading to widespread agreement that health care preparedness in the United States needed dramatic improvement. The chaotic evacuations of more than 6,400 hospital and nursing-home patients in New York City after Hurricane Sandy in 2012 reinforced concern about the readiness of health care providers during emergencies. Despite repeated calls for change, however, and billions of dollars in disaster-related costs for health care providers, federal rules do not require that critical medical institutions make even minimal preparations for major emergencies, from hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes to bioterrorist attacks and infectious epidemics such as Ebola and Zika. 

    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]
    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 agenda for us is to 1.) increase participation at DHMH Regional Meetings (Have you signed the MOUs?)  2.) Conduct two Tabletop exercises late March-early April at two health center locations (tentative). The focus of our exercises this year will be emerging infectious disease i.e. Zika Virus 3) ICS400 and 700 Webinar Trainings

    How Prepared Is Your Community for an Emergency? 

    Download the kit checklist: 

    Family communication and evacuation plan: 

    *** Look for the latest EP related updates RIGHT HERE!
    Policy, Advocacy and Legislation
    National News
    Pop-Up Health Clinics Fill A Void In Care 
    Nicole Lamoureux needs about 1,200 volunteers to help complete her mission: transforming a Dallas convention center into what she calls "the largest doctor's office in the world-for the one day it's open." This temporary mega-doctor's office-a pop-up clinic, if you will-is part of a growing trend representing an increasingly important piece of the medical safety net in the U.S. Such clinics, staged by nonprofits and funded mostly by individual donors, are an opportunity for doctors to care for patients without worrying about insurance, and for those patients to see a doctor they wouldn't otherwise get to see.

    The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has published the Annual Update to the Federal Poverty Guidelines.  The federal poverty level (FPL) is used by the U.S. government to define who is eligible for many programs.  These guidelines are used by the Departments of Health, Human Services, Agriculture, Energy, Labor, and Treasury and the Corporation for National and Community Services and Legal Services Corporation. It's based on a family's annual cash income, rather than its total wealth, annual consumption, or its own assessment of well-being. 

    Gov. Snyder Seeks More Medicaid Coverage for Flint Residents 
    Gov. Rick Snyder is asking the federal government to expand Medicaid coverage to people under 21 and pregnant women who have been exposed to Flint's lead-contaminated water. In a statement released Sunday, Snyder says about 15,000 more Flint residents would benefit if the government approves the request. The governor says the state would help by lining up doctors and behavioral health specialists and providing other services

    Next-generation sequencing technology became commercially available only recently, after the first test was given approval by the Food and Drug Administration in 2013. But scientists and clinicians say it has already identified multiple cases where a patient's puzzling symptoms turned out to be signs of a rare disease. As this technology gets cheaper and faster, experts say more patients will get tested and find they have rare diseases. They will have the satisfaction of finding out what is causing their symptoms but then will often face a frustrating question: What do you do when diagnosed with a rare disease that has been studied little and has no known treatment, and few other patients to turn to for support?

    President's Final Budget for Fiscal Year 2016-2017
    Last week President Obama released his proposed budget for federal fiscal year 2016-2017.  The proposal calls for two additional years of mandatory funding for Community Health Centers , through FY 2019.  NACHC in a public statement on the budget proposal expressed disappointment that it failed to include a longer term or even permanent continuation of this funding noting,  "short-term extensions of such a major funding source put care in jeopardy, and represent an 'emergency room approach' to primary care investment."  The proposal also calls for continued mandatory funding for the National Health Service Corps and the Teaching Health Centers programs for three additional years.

    Experts have long known that rich people generally live longer than poor people. But a growing body of data shows a more disturbing pattern: Despite big advances in medicine, technology and education, the longevity gap between high-income and low-income Americans has been widening sharply. The poor are losing ground not only in income, but also in years of life, the most basic measure of well-being.

    Zika Virus Test Is Weeks, Not Years Away, W.H.O. Says 
    Scientists are "weeks, not years" from developing a test for the fast-spreading Zika virus, but large-scale clinical trials for a potential vaccine are at least 18 months away, the World Health Organization announced on Friday. The W.H.O. declared Zika a global public health emergency on Feb. 1, only the fourth time it had raised such an alert

    Maryland Area Health Education Center Program Implementing Statewide Community Health Worker Training 
    Maryland Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) is bringing together their existing collaborative partnerships across the state to provide the resources and expertise needed to support a Community Health Worker (CHW) statewide infrastructure. The three Area Health Education Centers(AHEC) as a whole are committing together to train CHWs statewide with a curriculum based on the eleven core competencies recommended by the 2015 Maryland Workgroup on Workforce Development of Community Health Workers. Curriculum is a hybrid of online modules and in person training. The AHECs have trained CHWs working across the state in hospitals, health departments, and within their own AHEC centers. 

    80% by 2018 Communications Guidebook:
    Webinar Guidebook and Companion Guide here:   https://youtu.be/HrlLBpH0JqE

    It's a question the healthcare industry and federal regulators have wrestled with for decades, long before the advent of electronic health-record systems and the latest push to make those electronic records available at any time, anywhere.
    HHS weighed in Friday on yet another federal argument against patient control and in favor of more fluid information sharing. The agency proposes modifying a key Code of Federal Regulations privacy rule covering patient records for drug and alcohol-abuse treatment, and by default, behavioral health. 
    The proposed change to the rule, 42 CFR Part 2, would maintain the requirement that patient consent be obtained prior to disclosing or exchanging medical records that would identify, directly or indirectly, an individual who has been diagnosed or treated for a substance-abuse disorder.
    State News
    Letter on Zika Virus from Dr. Rattay, DE's Director of Division of Public Health. Please disseminate to your team accordingly.

    Dear Colleague,
    The Zika virus has received a lot of attention in the news lately and I am writing to share the latest information and tools for your use.  
    Delaware received word yesterday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that we have one lab confirmed travel-related case in an adult female. Pregnancy is not an issue and the individual is not considered infectious.
    Zika is generally transmitted through bites of infected Aedes mosquitoes. The mosquito that most commonly transmits Zika (Aedes aegypti), as well as dengue and chikungunya, is very rare in Delaware. However, in Delaware we do have another Aedes species of concern for possible transmission of Zika, the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus. Local Zika transmission via a mosquito is possible once mosquito season starts but it depends on a variety of factors.  We are working with DNREC's Mosquito Control Section to prepare for that possibility.
    Most people who are infected with Zika do not develop symptoms. About one in five people infected with the virus develop the disease, and symptoms are generally mild. Anyone who lives or travels in the impacted areas can be infected.  The most common symptoms of Zika virus are fever, rash, joint pain, or conjunctivitis (red eyes). Symptoms typically begin two to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. It can also be transmitted from a pregnant mother to her baby during pregnancy or around the time of birth. It is not yet known how often Zika is transmitted from mother to baby. In very rare cases, there have been documented cases of sexual transmission from male to female.
    The most serious threat linked to Zika is serious birth defects.  While it generally presents as a mild illness, there have been reports of serious birth defects to infants whose mother contracted the virus while pregnant.  Microcephaly (http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/birthdefects/microcephaly.html), a condition in which a baby's head is smaller than expected when compared to babies of the same sex and age, and other poor pregnancy outcomes in babies of mothers are now being linked to the virus.
    As a result, the Division of Public Health (DPH) is focusing its messaging and awareness on preventing exposure to pregnant women and their partners.  Please share the attached information with your patients, clients, co-workers, and community members, and post the flyers anywhere you might serve pregnant or reproductive age women. The attached materials include:
             DPH Zika e-newsletter: general info and important links
             Flyer targeting pregnant women for posting  in medical/other locations(English)
             Flyer targeting pregnant women for posting in medical/other locations (Spanish)
    You may also find the DPH Zika webpage helpful:  http://dhss.delaware.gov/dhss/dph/zika.html.  
    Those who recently traveled or plan to travel to areas where Zika transmission is ongoing, including, but not limited to, Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, Barbados, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, U.S. Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Panama could be at risk for exposure.  For the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) list of countries, visit: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices.
    CDC guidance on this disease is evolving almost daily.  You may find it helpful to bookmark the CDC official Zika webpage at http://www.cdc.gov/zika/ as information becomes more available.
    Thank you for all you do to serve the people of Delaware.
    Karyl Rattay, MD, MS
    Division of Public Health
    Delaware Dept of Health and Social Services
    Helping Generations after Generations of Patients: Kudos Total Healthcare Inc
    Rhonda Jones began seeing doctors at a Total Health Care clinic in West Baltimore in the 1970s, when she was pregnant.
    Now 58, with a stroke added to her life's medical record, she still goes there. Public transportation brings her to appointments and she walks into the clinic with a cane.
    "Even if you don't have insurance they'll help you," Jones said as she stood outside the Division Street location recently, wrapped in a light jacket. "One of the best community clinics in the city."
    In Baltimore's poorer neighborhoods, where problems are plentiful and solutions scarce, Total Health Care strives to correct disparities in access and treatment long faced by people who struggle to get by.
    ...."Even if you don't have insurance they'll help you," Jones said as she stood outside the Division Street location recently, wrapped in a light jacket. "One of the best community clinics in the city."

    Pushed by once-unthinkable shifts in how they are reimbursed, Baltimore's famous medical institutions say they are trying harder than ever to improve the health of their lower-income neighbors in West Baltimore. But dozens of interviews with patients, doctors and local leaders show multiple barriers between the community and the glassy hospital towers a few blocks away. Reporters from Kaiser Health News and the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism spent much of the fall in and around Sandtown-Winchester, a Baltimore neighborhood where violence flared last year after Freddie Gray was fatally injured in police custody. Residents say they have little more confidence in the medical system intended to heal them than in the criminal justice system intended to protect them.
    Finance & Business
    The High Cost Of Cancer Care May Take Physical And Emotional Toll On Patients¬ 
    Doctors who supervise cancer treatments have long been concerned about side effects, including fatigue, hair loss and depression. To that list, some now add the potentially harmful effects of costly treatments. Researchers call it "financial toxicity." The financial burdens that some patients suffer as a result of the cost of their treatments can cause damage to their physical and emotional well-being. Repercussions can include delaying or forgoing the treatment and only partly filling or even avoiding taking prescribed medication.

    As the 2015 tax filing season gets underway, tax preparers said a delay in new health law tax forms is causing confusion for some consumers, while others want details about exemptions from increasingly stiff penalties for not having insurance. Under the law, most people must have health insurance or pay a fine. In 2015, the penalty was $325 per adult and $162.50 per child up to $975, or 2 percent of household income, whichever is greater. This is the first year that employers, insurers and government programs are required to send consumers tax forms that report whether they offered or provided health insurance that was considered affordable and adequate under the law
    Latest News on ACA

    The third annual Open Enrollment period for the Health Insurance Marketplaces ended on January 31, but enrollment will continue year-round for individuals experiencing certain life or work transitions. Individuals who permanently move, get divorced, lose coverage due to job loss, job change, or an increase in income, or experience other qualifying changes in circumstances are eligible for a time-limited Special Enrollment Period (SEP) in the Marketplaces when their transition occurs.
    These enrollment opportunities are a critical part of the health insurance safety net created under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But the SEP safety net could be weakened if the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) or Marketplaces take steps that would make it more difficult for individuals to enroll using Special Enrollment Periods, a policy change that insurers are advocating.
    Insurers have alleged that SEPs are being misused by consumers, but have not publicly provided data demonstrating misuse. Insurers concerns seem to stem in part from their surprise at the number of SEP enrollees, and those enrollees' shorter duration of coverage and higher costs compared to those who enroll during Open Enrollment.

    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
    Join MACHC's next Outreach & Enrollment Call ON FRIDAY, March 4, 2016!  We will have Rachel Linstead Goldsmith, Regional Manager of Enroll America help facilitate this excellent post OE3 Session.
    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. 
    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.

    More than 162,000 Marylanders enrolled in private plans for health coverage during the three-month open enrollment period for 2016.
    Maryland achieved one of the fastest growth rates of any state in the country for 2016 enrollment compared to 2015, according to ACASignups.net. Enrollments in qualified health plans totaled 162,652 from Nov. 1, 2015 to Feb. 5, 2016. That was 33% more than the 122,778 enrolled during the 2015 open enrollment period from Nov. 15, 2014 to Feb. 28, 2015.
    Including Medicaid enrollments, since Nov. 1 more than a half-million Marylanders have enrolled through the state marketplace for 2016 coverage.
    "We're grateful to hundreds of consumer assistance workers and brokers, our participating carriers and dozens of civic and corporate outreach partners for helping make this third open enrollment a success," said Carolyn Quattrocki, executive director of the MarylandHealth Benefit Exchange (MHBE). "And we're especially thrilled that thousands of Marylanders now have greater protection from unexpected health care costs and peace of mind in knowing that they're covered."
    MHBE administers the state's health insurance marketplace, working with the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH), Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA), Department of Human Resources (DHR) and stakeholders statewide.
    Other highlights of Maryland's open enrollment:
    • Enrollments of young adults (18-34) tied for 5th in the country with 29% of the total private plan enrollments, according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Health as of Dec. 26, 2015. That was greater than the national average of 27% and greater than Maryland's rate of 27% for young adults a year earlier.
    • African-American enrollment - it is optional for consumers to identify their race or ethnicity when they apply - was up 37% to more than 31,036. That compared to 22,632 a year ago. 
    • Hispanic enrollment was up 244% to 18,878, compared to 5,481 a year ago. Since the Affordable Care Act took effect, the uninsured rate for African-Americans and Hispanics has decreased twice as quickly as for whites, according to a recent study by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Public Health.
    • 30,313 individuals enrolled in 2016 dental plans, either standalone or as part of their medical coverage. This is the first year that dental coverage is offered on the state marketplace. 
    • Of the total enrollments, 51,195, or 31%, were new customers and 111,457, or 69%, were returning enrollees. After open enrollment ends, people can enroll only if they have had a qualifying "life event," such as marriage, birth of a child or loss of coverage.  More information is available at MarylandHealthConnection.gov
    • Nine out of 10 Marylanders who enrolled through the state marketplace were determined to be eligible for federal subsidies or qualified for Medicaid.  Last year, more than 60,000 Maryland households received a total of $208 million in federal tax credits to lower their cost of health insurance.
    • An additional 362,415 enrolled in Medicaid through MarylandHealthConnection since Nov. 1. People who are eligible for Medicaid can enroll year-round. As of Jan. 31, a total of 1,220,460 Marylanders are enrolled in Medicaid and the Maryland Children's Health Program (MCHP).  The total number of ACA Medicaid Expansion Adults is 239,072.  Since Dec. 31, 2013, the net change in Medicaid enrollment is +217,603 as of Jan. 31. That figure takes into account that individuals lose Medicaid coverage due to changes in household, age and income as well as redeterminations.

    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:  March 31, 2016
    The Accountable Health Communities model, as authorized under section 3021 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), provides funding opportunities to community-based organizations, healthcare provider practices, hospitals and health systems, institutions of higher education, local government entities, tribal organizations and for-profit and non-profit local and national entities for the purpose of testing whether systematically identifying the health-related social needs of community-dwelling Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and addressing their identified needs impacts their total healthcare costs and their inpatient and outpatient utilization of health care services.

    Ongoing Accepted Applications

    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. 

    Eligible applicants, which include FQHCs and RHCs, must be rural. This program will provide funding during federal fiscal years 2016-2019. Approximately $4,150,000 is expected to be available annually to fund up to 21 recipients.  Applicants may apply for up to $200,000 per year for a project period of three years. 

    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 
    Topic:  Building Your Primary Care Team to Transform Your Practice  - Clinical Workforce Development
    Description:  The Community Health Center, Inc. (CHC) is hosting the first in a series of 8 webinars on transforming practices through the team-based model of care. This webinar will introduce our faculty from the MacColl Center for Health Care Innovation at the Group Health Research Institute and the Community Health Center, Inc. This webinar will provide an introduction to the entire webinar series, offer an overview of the rationale and evidence supporting team-based care, and outline the roles and functions of the primary care team.
    Time:  Feb 18, 2016 2:00 PM (GMT-5:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)

    In states that expanded Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act, preventive care visits at community health centers increased 41 percent, according to a new AHRQ-funded study. The study was based on
    electronic health record data of more than 400,000 patients at nearly 220 community health centers in five states that expanded Medicaid coverage and four states that did not. The analysis looked at patients ages 19 to 64 who were either uninsured or had Medicaid or private insurance. Researchers compared patient visit rates during the 12-month period before Medicaid expansion and the 12-month period after. In addition to the increase in preventive care visits, the rate of new patient visits climbed 14 percent and visits for services such as lab tests increased 23 percent in states with expanded Medicaid coverage
    Health Observances This Week

    More than 1 in 10 teens who have been on a date have also been physically abused by a boyfriend or girlfriend in the last year. Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month is a national effort to raise awareness and protect teens from violence.
    You can make a difference: Encourage schools, community-based organizations, parents, and teens to come together to prevent teen dating violence.
    How can Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month make a difference?
    We can use this month to raise awareness about teen dating violence and take action toward a solution - both at home and in our communities.
    Here are just a few ideas:
    • Note for Health Center Workers:
      Encourage parents to talk with their teens about healthy relationships.
    • Ask teachers to hold classroom discussions about dating violence and prevention - or to invite speakers in to talk about these issues.
    • Help schools create policies that support healthy relationships and involve student voices.
    How can I help spread the word?
    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 |