Funding Opportunities from HRSA’s Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

The Health Resources & Services Administration’s (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy recently shared the following funding opportunities which are relevant to the Medicaid Transformation Project:

DOL Employment and Training for Re-entry – Application due April 25.  The Department of Labor (DOL) will make 21 awards totaling $82.5 million to help formerly-incarcerated individuals successfully make transition back to the community.  All eligible applicants must be organizations with IRS 501(c)(3) non-profit status, including women’s and minority organizations; state or local governments; or any Indian and Native American entity eligible for grants under section 166 of the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Grant.

DOJ:  Building Capacity for Tribal Researchers – Application due May 13.  The Department of Justice (DOJ) will make five awards for total funding of $500,000.  The investment will provide planning grants to state, local, or tribal governments, as well as nonprofit organizations and institutions of higher learning to develop proposals for research projects that improve criminal justice in tribal communities. In addition, the DOJ will invest $4 million in Tribal Justice Technical Assistance – Due May 14 to develop strategies to address violent crime and crimes related to substance abuse and other controlled substances.   

HRSA: Enhancing Oral Health Infrastructure in Health Centers – Application due May 21.  The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) will invest $76 million in existing health centers to increase access to new or enhanced high-quality, integrated oral health services, including those provided via telehealth and virtual dentistry.  Of the more than 27 million people nationwide who rely on HRSA-funded health centers, one in five are rural residents.  Rural communities often lack adequate oral healthcare, though the regular preventive care of the teeth and gums is important in maintaining overall health, playing a role in preventing diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

HRSA: Rural Maternity and Obstetrics Management Strategies – Application due May 24. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) will invest $1.8 million in three health networks to test models that improve obstetrics services in rural areas.  For the purposes of this program, the applicant must have a network composition that includes: 1) at least two rural hospitals or Critical Access Hospitals; 2) at least one Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) or FQHC look-alike; 3) state Home Visiting and Healthy Start Programs, if regionally available; and 4) the state Medicaid agency.  For more information, contact RMOMS@hrsa.gov.

Visit HRSA’s grants page to learn more and see other funding opportunities.

New Project Managers Added to Team

With the start to Spring, North Sound ACH welcomed two new Project Managers!  Both are eager to begin working with our partners and and excited to join the team…and we’re thrilled to have them!

Lindsay Knaus has spent most her life in the North Sound region, in Island and Whatcom counties.  She received her Bachelor’s degree in Human Services from Western Washington University prior to earning a Master’s in Social Work (MSW) and Master of Public Administration (MPA).  She brings eight years of experience working in both direct and indirect patient care settings. She has provided direct patient care as a medical social worker in the hospital system and more recently, served as project manager overseeing the design and implementation of behavioral health integration in primary care clinics. Lindsay brings experience in program development, behavioral health integration, quality improvement, and population health management and is excited to join the team.

Amanda Robins grew up in Philadelphia,  and earned her Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, and her Master of Public Administration at the University of Washington.  She moved to Bellingham four years ago, and most recently worked as the Street Outreach Program Manager for Northwest Youth Services, working with homeless, at-risk, and runaway youth.  Amanda looks forward to using this direct service experience to inform her work at North Sound ACH.

 

 

Health Care Authority Update on Healthier Washington

From Washington State Health Care Authority bulletin:

We’re just getting started

January 31, 2019 marked the end of the State Innovation Models (SIM) grant. SIM created the foundation for Healthier Washington, a multi-agency, multi-sector movement to transform the health and wellness system in Washington State. It changed the way we work together, use state purchasing power, and build infrastructure. It boosted Washington’s commitment to create stronger communities and healthier people.

There’s a difference between SIM and Healthier Washington

SIM funded many Healthier Washington initiatives, and although the grant is ending, Healthier Washington continues. Under the banner of Healthier Washington, we’ll continue to:

  • Support and help sustain Accountable Communities of Health.
  • Integrate physical and behavioral health care, and support person-centered care.
  • Move toward health care purchasing that rewards value rather than quantity of services received.
  • Support providers and clinicians as they transition to value-based care, and work with partners to ensure a robust health workforce.
  • Enhance the Clinical Data Repository so providers can better coordinate care by accessing health care information within one system.
  • Collaborate with the Health Innovation Leadership Network.
  • Support and guide Medicaid Transformation efforts and rural transformation activities.

Healthier Washington isn’t going away

Healthier Washington is a movement—a way of thinking about how we approach health and wellness transformation. In this next phase, we are moving from building infrastructure to finding ways to support and sustain our work. Transformation takes time, and we remain committed to our initiatives and partnerships.

Learn more about Healthier Washington by visiting our website.

Grant Opportunity

Birth Equity Project

Washington State Department of Health’s Office of Family and Community Health Improvement (OFCHI) is pleased to announce a grant opportunity to fund projects aimed at improving maternal health and birth outcomes in priority populations through the Center for Disease Control Preventative Health and Health Services Block Grant (PHHS). We are inviting communities to submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) to apply for direct funds to plan and implement a three year Birth Equity Project aimed at achieving these goals.

Instructions and materials for the Letter of Intent (LOI) to apply can be found here. The LOI is due March 4, 2019.

Snohomish County Releases Report on Opioid Misuse

In a new report released January 9, the Snohomish Health District estimates that between 5,000 and 10,000 people in Snohomish County are suffering from opioid use disorder. It’s likely that another 35,000 to 80,000 people are misusing opioids.
 
“We focused on opioid misuse and opioid use disorder because they are considered the two ends of the spectrum for diagnosable patterns that can lead to overdose and death,” said Dr. Mark Beatty, health officer for the Snohomish Health District. “This data will aid the Health District and the Opioid Response Multi-agency Coordination Group with evidence-based decision making, assessment of interventions, and other planning purposes.”

This data is the result of several months of in-depth research and analysis completed by health officer Dr. Mark Beatty. In his report, Opioid Use Disorder and Opioid Misuse in Snohomish County: Using Capture-Recapture to Estimate the Burden of Disease, Dr. Beatty applied a method originally created to estimate wildlife populations and recently used to estimate the prevalence of kidney disease.

Disease burden estimates are challenging to complete in populations that are difficult to identify or pinpoint. It becomes increasingly more complex when diseases like opioid use disorder are not a notifiable condition, such as measles or whooping cough. While the published literature is sparse, it’s possible to use surveillance for opioid events in order to estimate the disease burden. This requires an additional method known as capture-recapture.

[Click here to view an overview of capture-recapture.]

For this method, Dr. Beatty accessed FirstWatch—a proprietary record management system used for EMS calls across the county—to pull data for all overdose calls recorded in July 2018. During that month, there were 73 opioid-related overdoses identified. Utilizing data compiled by Providence Regional Medical Center Everett and the Health District, made possible through a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) grant funded through the Washington State Department of Health, Dr. Beatty then reviewed patients seen in the emergency department. Of those 29 overdose patients at the hospital, 18 were also found in the FirstWatch data. That number translates into approximately 1,400 individuals in Snohomish County hospitalized annually because of opioids.

Using a model published by the CDC that estimates for every one death there are 32 emergency department visits for misuse and abuse, Dr. Beatty modified the calculations using Snohomish County estimates identified from the capture-recapture study.

For more information on efforts being done through the Opioid Response MAC Group, please go to www.snohomishoverdoseprevention.com. This website and accompanying social media accounts were developed to be a one-stop shop for resources. Whether trying to understand the problem, prevent addiction, or save a life, this is a place to find information for that first next step. 

Welcome to the team, Nyka!

We are very excited to have Nyka Osteen joining the North Sound ACH Team. As a Project Coordinator, Nyka will be supporting project implementation, monitoring and evaluation efforts.

A native of the North Sound region, Nyka grew up in Mt. Vernon and completed her Bachelor’s degree in microbiology and global health before earning her graduate degree in community-oriented public health from the University of Washington. After working in HIV and cancer research for the past seven years, she is excited to be transitioning to a public health and health systems role. She brings experience working in LGBTQ health and program evaluation to the North Sound ACH team.  Welcome, Nyka!

December 2018 Newsletter

Some Final Thoughts for 2018…

It has been almost a full year since my dad passed, and it’s been ten years since I lost my mom. Both feel like yesterday. Family means more to me than I can say– family born of the same blood, but also the family we choose to add to our lives. My parents taught us many things, but there are two especially that I carry with me every day. My mom taught us to not be afraid to wear our hearts on our sleeves, and she was with me when I found the pin that I wear every day in her memory. My dad taught us to find something to laugh out loud about every day, and if you ever asked him how he was, right up to his final days, he would reply, “life is good.” Born during the Depression, having gone through multiple wars and served in WWII, they knew about sacrifice, and that things take a long time to come to fruition. And they tried to teach us that. They created a home where everyone felt they belonged, no matter our differences or what was going on in our lives. I’d like to think we can do something similar here in the North Sound region.

For those who had a wonderful year, we wish for that to continue for you in 2019. For those who struggled, we wish you a reprieve and a peaceful path forward. The team at North Sound ACH sends our best wishes to you, your families, and those you love.

Liz

Check out the whole newsletter at this link: https://bit.ly/2GCZ2bB

New Positions Posted!

At the December 2018 Board meeting, several new positions were approved for 2019. With two staff departing for new adventures, we are currently recruiting for a Tribal Liaison, and several Project Manager positions. We also have Project Coordinator positions available to support project implementation and communications, including one focused specifically on Oral Health.

If you are looking for a position, have a commitment to equity, and would bring diverse experience to our team, we are looking for you! You can see our current postings at this link. In addition to these positions we anticipate a few more in the first quarter of 2019, so please stay connected!