Storm Recovery Efforts Continue: A Message from Elizabeth Swain
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the truth of what it means to be a community health center was on full display. Health centers that lost power or experienced damages to their facilities did whatever it took to make sure their patients got the care and medications they needed. Eight community health centers dispatched 13 mobile medical and outreach vans to provide free health care to communities in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island devastated by the storm. Health centers worked together with CHCANYS, the New York State Department of Health, New York City, our federal partners and other providers to keep the patients at the center of care, even and especially during a crisis.
There is still much to do. We need to ensure that health centers can quickly become fully operational, and we have to address the financial losses and costs to rebuild. Community health centers throughout New York have experienced millions of dollars in financial losses due to Hurricane Sandy. Our initial assessment shows that at least 45 health centers experienced some disruption in their operations due to the storm, including 24 service sites that were without power. These operational disruptions translate to a significant loss of revenue, much of which will not be recoverable. These losses will be compounded by the costs to repair facilities and replace equipment as well as the costs to better prepare for the next emergency.
We are proud of what New York’s health centers have done for their patients and their communities in response to the storm. We know that the road to recovery will be a long one. The costs will be high. But if we apply the same collaborative effort that got us through the worst of the storm, we can get our health care system back on track and continue moving toward building the system that achieves the Triple Aim.
Community Health Centers in NYC Deploy Mobile Health Vans to Help Hurricane Victims In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, seven community health centers have dispatched 12 mobile medical and outreach vans to provide health care to communities in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island devastated by the storm. The first vans began delivering services on Monday, November 5, 2012. The health care services provided through the vans were available free to anyone who needs care. Click here to read more.
Primary Care Operations Disrupted by Hurricane Sandy; CHCANYS’ Emergency Management Team Working to Assess Damages and Mobilize Recovery Efforts Community health centers were among providers hit hard by Hurricane Sandy, and many continue to face significant challenges to providing care. An initial assessment by the Community Health Care Association of New York State (CHCANYS) showed that at least 41 health centers had some disruption of their operations due to the storm, including 24 service sites that had power outages. Click here to read the full press release.
News from Policy If you have questions about CHCANYS' policy and advocacy work, please contact Beverly Grossman, email@example.com.
2012 Elections Are Over, But Our Work is Not! Now that the 2012 elections are over, CHCANYS would like to thank those of you who participated in the Community Health Vote initiative during the past several months, educating your patients and community members about the importance of voting and helping them to register and get to the polls. As a result of your efforts, over 1,000 new voters were registered to vote in New York State, a testament to the ability of health centers to engage and mobilize.
Decisions will soon be made at the federal level that could have a drastic effect on the Health Centers program. Please be on the lookout for action alerts from both CHCANYS and NACHC in the coming weeks, and be prepared to respond!
News from Health Center Support If you have questions about CHCANYS' health center support activities, please contact Rebecca Gaige, firstname.lastname@example.org.
CHCANYS to Host Uniform Data Systems (UDS) Onsite Training in NYC on Monday, December 17th This one-day training will cover the preparation of the 2012 UDS report and is directed at fiscal staff, clinical staff responsible for clinical measure reporting, and management staff at established FQHCs, New Access Points and Look Alikes. Click here for a UDS training description and to view the agenda. This training will follow the same agenda as the November 15th training in Rochester.
NYU Kimmel Center 60 Washington Square South New York, NY
Additional details may be found on the CHCANYS website. Please note that the building does not open until 8:30 a.m. This is an all-weather training session. No shows and cancellations will not be refunded.
HRSA Announces 340B Program Recertification for BPHC Grantees The Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) is collaborating with the Healthcare Systems Bureau, Office of Pharmacy Affairs (OPA) to announce the first 340B Drug Pricing Program recertification for BPHC grantees. OPA is required to recertify all participating covered entities enrolled in the 340B Program to ensure covered entities are appropriately listed on the 340B database and that covered entities are in compliance with 340B Program requirements. In late January 2013, all BPHC grantees participating in the 340B Program are required to complete the recertification process.
To ensure a smooth recertification, you are encouraged to visit the 340B Program database and verify that your health center’s address is correct and that listed sites are still open and eligible to participate in 340B. It is the health center’s responsibility to keep its 340B database record up to date. The database record should reflect the health center’s information in the HRSA EHB system. Most importantly, verify that the 340B Program contact information for the Authorizing Official and Primary Contact is up to date. The Authorizing Official (AO) will be responsible for completing the recertification process online. If your health center’s record is incorrect, please update it prior to the recertification process by submitting a change request form to OPA by following this link to the 340B Program change form.
On August 14, OPA provided a webinar for health centers regarding general information about the 340B Program and what to expect during the recertification process. The session was recorded and may be accessed by clicking here.
If you encounter any issues with the 340B Program database or have questions about recertification, please send an e-mail to email@example.com.
The New York State Department of Health (DOH) Bureau of Primary and Acute Care Reimbursement Posts ACHF Software The Bureau of Primary and Acute Care Reimbursement (BPACR) has posted the 2011 AHCF software to the Health Commerce System (HCS) to download for the completion of the 2011 AHCF cost report. Click here to access it. Please be advised that the 2011 AHCF cost report filing deadline is January 14, 2013. Late filing of the cost report may subject facilities to a two percent reduction in the current Medicaid payment rate(s).
In order to gain access to this software and enter the necessary cost report data, you must have requested and been granted an HCS Account. Click here for a basic set of instructions to assist you with accessing the software on the HCS.
October 2012 Medicaid Update Now Available Click here to access the October 2012 Medicaid Update.
Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Releases Program Assistance Letter (PAL) 2013 -02 Changes to the calendar year 2013 Uniform Data System to be reported by health centers in early 2014 have been announced by HRSA. PAL 2013-02 describes these changes and may be accessed on the HRSA website. Please click here to access it.
News from the Quality Improvement Program If you have questions about CHCANYS’ Quality Improvement Program, please contact Kathy Alexis, firstname.lastname@example.org.
News from the The Manhattan Tobacco Cessation Program (MTCP) Click here to view MTCP’s September 2012 newsletter.
Connect® Workshop CancerCare’s free Connect® Workshop provides information on cancer-related issues for people living with cancer, their families, friends and health care professionals. The workshops are led by experts in oncology and may be accessed via telephone or online webcast. Professional continuing education credits are available for social workers and dietitians. Upcoming workshop topics include:
Progress in the Treatment of Multiple Myeloma Thursday, November 29, 2012 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. EST
To register for the workshops, click here or call 1-800-813-4673. After you have registered, you will receive additional information. To listen to previous workshops on the CancerCare web site, click here.
News from Emergency Management If you have questions about CHCANYS' Emergency Management work, please contact Matthew Ziemer, email@example.com.
FEMA to Hold Applicant Briefings for Private Not for Profit Entities Needing Public Assistance
Please click here to access important information regarding the FEMA Applicant Briefings being held in New York City on Friday, November 16th (tomorrow) and Monday, November 19th for Private Not for Profit Entities applying for public assistance as a result of Hurricane Sandy.
Hurricane Recovery Resources
Click here to visit CHCANYS' Hurricane Sandy Recovery webpage, which features an extensive listing of important updates and resources/assistance available to those impacted by the storm.
The New York State Critical Asset Survey The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) has requested that all health centers complete or update their information on the Critical Asset Survey for Community Health Centers for the 2012-2013 fiscal year. This survey is critical to the NYSDOH and its planning partners. For those of you with multiple access points, a survey must be completed for each site within your network. Although many of you completed this survey last year, the NYSDOH asks that you again access the survey, verify the information that appears, and resubmit it so that the Health Commerce System is up to date with the latest information.
CHCANYS will provide outreach to assist the NYSDOH in tracking participation and the progress of the survey responses. The survey results will provide the NYSDOH with important information regarding your needs in the event of a catastrophic accident, disaster, or health emergency and will allow the NYSDOH to plan for the deployment of emergency supplies and medicine to your Center prior to or during an emergency.
To access the survey, please click here. Once logged in to the Health Commerce System, find the application Nursing Home Surveillance and Reporting System, select Community Health Center Critical Asset Survey 2012, and then locate the data entry menus.
For assistance with log in, requests for passwords or other technical issues, please contact the HCS IT Helpline CAMU at 1-866-529-1890. This unit will assist you with issues that you may have gaining access to the Health Commerce System.
Please report any problems you encouter to Mario Gonzalez, CHCANYS’ Emergency Management Program Manager, at 212-710-3810 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Interoperable Communications Exercise The NYSDOH will be performing an interoperable communications exercise in the spring of 2013. This exercise, performed annually, is used to test NYSDOH’s ability to communicate with its community health center partners throughout the state and derives its contacts through the New York State Health Commerce System (formally HERDS).
The interoperable communications exercise ensures that all health centers in the state are able to receive emergency action messages and other information as needed during an emergency. During the Spring 2013 exercise, NYSDOH will increase the complexity of the drill by initiating first contact, transmitting an emergency action message to health centers, and then asking them to log on to the Health Commerce System to complete a task.
In the past, a limited number of health centers participated in the initial exercises. This year, CHCANYS will enroll health centers throughout the state. Please make sure that your Health Commerce System accounts are up to date and that your HCS directors / coordinators are current, as they will be the ones to be contacted as part of the exercise.
If you have any questions regarding this exercise, please contact Mario Gonzalez at email@example.com or call 212-710-3810.
FEMA Emergency Management Training In light of recent events, the NYSDOH has requested that all health centers become familiar with the National Incident Management System (NIMS). It is recommended that all emergency preparedness coordinators, CEOs, COOs, and other management personnel be familiar with NIMS requirements and that NIMS, or a customized version of NIMS, be implemented across the state’s health center network to facilitate operations during an emergency.
While many health centers across the state already have customized versions of NIMS in their emergency management plans, the NYSDOH recommends that all leadership and emergency preparedness coordinators complete an online NIMS training course, available on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) website. This training course consists of the following components:
IS 100.HCb – The Incident Command System
IS 200.HCa – Applying ICS to Healthcare Organizations
IS 700a – Introduction to the National Incident Management System
IS 800 – Introduction to the National Response Framework
The CHCANYS Emergency Management Team is available to assist you with NIMS implementation and training. A survey will soon be distributed in order to assess the extent to which NIMS is currently integrated into your Emergency Management plans. If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact Mario Gonzalez at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212-710-3810.
New York State Emergency Management Coalitions Given the success of recent collaborations between emergency management partners and other regional resources, the NYSDOH has divided the state’s health care emergency management resources into four regions in order to develop coalitions, as follows:
Metropolitan Area Regional Office (MARO) - Lower Hudson Valley (below Columbia and Ulster Counties), NYC and Long Island
Capital Regional Office - Albany and North Country
Central Regional Office - Syracuse, Rochester and Finger Lakes
Western Regional Office - Buffalo and other western assets
Each regional office is responsible for assisting health care institutions with integration into local plans and will assist with the development of exercises and trainings. Within the next 30 days, CHCANYS will provide all health centers in New York State with contact information for their regional offices and help them to initiate communication with their regional partners. If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact Mario Gonzalez at email@example.com or call 212-710-3810.
Biosurveillance Update Please click here for a detailed update on Legionellosis and Influenza.
News from HIT If you have questions about CHCANYS' HIT work, please contact Lisa Perry, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Important Meaningful Use Updates
New York Medicaid is currently accepting attestations for Meaningful Use Participation Year 1 and Participation Year 2 through its MEIPASS website. Eligible Providers have until March 31, 2013 to attest in MEIPASS for Payment Year 2012 as Participation Year 1 or Participation Year 2.
As a reminder, the Participation Year 1 payment is the largest payment and is based on Adopting, Implementing or Upgrading to a certified electronic health record. Participation Year 2 requires the eligible provider to demonstrate meeting Stage 1 Meaningful Use requirements for 90 consecutive days during the reporting period (currently calendar year 2012). Medicaid eligible providers include physicians (MD or DO), dentists, nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, and physicians assistants who lead an FQHC/RHC (such as a school-based location). Your organization will submit numerators and denominators for each requirement for each individual provider.
If you attested for Adopt, Implement, Upgrade for a provider before April 29, 2012, you may attest for that provider for Participation Year 2 -- Meaningful Use Stage 1 -- prior to March 31, 2013, assuming the provider meets all of the required Meaningful Use objectives.
Do Not Delay - Time is running short for health centers that are planning on attesting for the Medicaid Meaningful Use incentive for the payment year ending December 31, 2012. The incentive program has very specific time frames for submission and substantial time is required to complete the prerequisites. The Health IT pages on the CHCANYS website include detailed instructions on completing the prerequisites.
A provider who has not achieved all of the Meaningful Use Stage 1 requirements previously may still be able to meet the thresholds using data from October, November and December.
As always, please contact Lisa Perry, Vice President, Health IT email@example.com or Stephanie Rose, Project Director, Health Center Network of NY firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
News from Workforce Development
If you have questions about CHCANYS’ Workforce Development Program, please e-mail us at email@example.com.
CUNY Medical Assistant Training Program
This fall, Lehman College and the Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) will launch a new MA program pilot. Revised with input from staff at FQHCs who work with medical assistants, the curriculum will provide specific training for the community health center environment. It is anticipated that there will be a group of 25 students accepted at each school. The New York Alliance for Careers in Healthcare (NYACH) has been working with CHCANYS to offer a streamlined application process to support incumbent worker applicants to the MA program. Interested staff will be able to simultaneously apply for Individual Training Grants (ITGs) which would cover the tuition fees for those accepted to the MA program. For more information, please contact Amanda Brown, Workforce Development Coordinator for CHCANYS at 212-710-4183 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
CUNY Certificate in Health Coaching and Care Coordination
CUNY's JFK, Jr. Institute for Worker Education, in association with Queensborough Community College, is now accepting applications for additional cohorts to begin the Certificate in Health Coaching and Care Coordination program in Spring 2013. This 10-credit, 5-course certificate is offered at no tuition cost to frontline workers in the allied health fields who have a GED or High School Diploma, are residents of New York State, and are available to commit to completing a series of 5 courses (a college bridge course and 4 credited courses) through December 2013.
For more information, including curriculum and application materials, please contact Amanda Brown, Workforce Development Coordinator for CHCANYS at 212-710-4183 or email@example.com.
If your health center has a training or technical assistance program that you'd like to share with others around the state, or if you would like to subscribe others at your health center to Your CHCANYS, please email the pertinent information to Rebecca Gaige-Troxell at firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome your feedback and comments.