JBS International is a proud Phase 1 and Phase 2 winner of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Maternal and Child Health Bureau Grand Challenge: Addressing Opioid Use Disorder in Pregnant Women and New Moms. Their response to HRSA’s Challenge provides a mobile decision-support application (i.e., vClinician: M&B OUD [Moms and Babies Opioid Use Disorder]) or “virtual clinical guide” to health care providers and educators in diverse medical settings.
You are invited to utilize this app where content focuses on one the following:
To download this free mobile app, go to the App Store (for iPhones) and Google Play Store (for Android phones) and search for vClinician: M&B OUD. For more information, please download vClinician: M&B OUD App Guide in the link.
The Bureau for Behavioral for Behavioral Health (BBH) has funded a new Children’s Crisis and Referral Line to interrupt behavioral health crises and connect families and youths with behavioral health services in their communities.
Families and youths can call, text, or chat the Children’s Crisis and Referral Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at 844HELP4WV or 844-435-7498.
The Children’s Crisis and Referral Line is an added service of the HELP4WV substance use and mental health support line operated by First Choices Services.
Click to read the press release.
2020 Scorecard continues to build upon a new era of accountability in Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program
Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the third annual update to its Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) Scorecard. The Scorecard is the signature Medicaid accountability initiative that highlights state and federal performance on the administration and health outcomes of the Medicaid and CHIP programs that collectively account for approximately $600 billion in annual spending and serve over 74 million Americans. For the first time, the Scorecard now provides identified per capita spending data across all states, highlighting variation in program costs alongside the quality and performance data. First released in 2018, the Medicaid and CHIP (MAC) Scorecard is a key part of President Trump’s efforts to ensure greater transparency and accountability of the nation’s largest health coverage programs.
“From the beginning of his administration, President Trump has made giving states more flexibility to provide high quality accessible care for our most vulnerable citizens on Medicaid and CHIP a priority,” said Administrator Seema Verma. “At the same time, we also recognize that with greater autonomy must come greater accountability. The Medicaid and CHIP Scorecard provides unprecedented transparency on cost and quality across state Medicaid and CHIP programs.”
This year’s release builds on the success of the previous Scorecards with a variety of updates and improvements for users, including the debut of a new way to view state-specific data on the Medicaid.gov State Profile “Quality of Care” section. CMS has also improved the overall design and navigation across the 2020 MAC Scorecard to enhance the user experience.
The Scorecard includes healthcare quality measures of asthma medication management for children and adults as well as a measure of follow-up care for adults after an emergency department visit for mental illness. It also contains new administrative accountability measures including CMS and state approval times for managed care contract reviews; and CMS approval times for enhanced federal funding to support states’ eligibility, enrollment and information technology systems.
The 2020 Scorecard provides per capita expenditure data across all states. For the 2018 T-MSIS based per capita expenditure data, seventeen states had a high level of data usability, and an additional eleven states showed a moderate level of data usability. The remaining states fell into the category of having a low level of data usability. The median per capita expenditures, based on CMS calculations, for all states in 2018 is $8,126, with a range of $1,807 in Puerto Rico to $14,387 in North Dakota.
This year, new data were added to the MAC Scorecard’s National Context page. For example, these new data show the percentage of each state’s population that is enrolled in Medicaid, which ranges from 9.0% to 36.3 % and that nationally, about half of those enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP are children. The National Context page also has new data on the national percentage of beneficiaries enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP by eligibility group and the national rate of improper payments in Medicaid and CHIP.
Further, the national context now provides information on the percentage of Medicaid beneficiaries currently enrolled in Medicare (i.e., dually eligible beneficiaries); the percentage of dually eligible beneficiaries in programs that integrate the delivery of Medicare and Medicaid benefits; and the approval status for states’ transition plans for home and community-based services. For example, nearly half of all states (23) have a Medicaid population where 11.8%-24.2% are dually eligible beneficiaries and 36 states now enroll dually eligible beneficiaries in integrated care programs. The addition of these new data in the Scorecard help to further underscore the importance of understanding the dually-eligible population’s role in the Medicaid program.
CMS continues to engage stakeholders in identifying enhancements to the MAC Scorecard, including receiving input from Medicaid agencies through a collaboration with the National Association of Medicaid Directors.
CMS analyzed trends in median state performance on a subset of Child and Adult Core Sets measures that are included in the MAC Scorecard’s State Health System Performance pillar. Under this pillar, five states reported all measures in Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 19: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Tennessee and Washington. Across all states that reported, performance improved from FFY 2017 to FFY 2019 on several measures, suggesting progress in the quality of care provided to Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries. These measures include:
- Well-Child Visits in the First 15 Months of Life (performance improved from 60.2% to 65.1%)
- Adolescent Well-Care Visits (performance improved from 44.9% to 50.7%)
- Immunizations for Adolescents (performance improved from 74.5% to 79.2%)
- Percentage of Eligibles Who Received Preventive Dental Services (performance improved from 48.2% to 49.0%)
- Comprehensive Diabetes Care: Hemoglobin A1c Poor Control (performance improved from 40.9% to 38.3%). Lower rates are better for this measure.
Overall, under the State Health System Performance pillar, states that reported for FFY19 have opportunities to improve in measures such as: emergency department utilization rate for children and adolescents; the percentage of children ages 3 to 6 who had at least one well-child visit with a primary care provider; the percentage of women delivering a live birth who had a timely postpartum care visit; and inpatient hospital admission rates for short-term complications of diabetes (e.g., diabetic ketoacidosis, hyperosmolarity) in adults ages 18 and older.
The State and Federal Administrative Accountability pillar measures show, for example, that the percentage of State Plan Amendments and 1915 waivers approved in within the first 90 day review period has increased between 2016 and the second quarter of 2020.
When viewing data in the MAC Scorecard, CMS would caution against making direct state-to-state comparisons based solely on data presented. For example, for measures drawn from Child and Adult Core Set, reporting methods can vary among states. States have access to different data on populations covered under fee-for-service as compared to populations covered under managed care. This variation in data availability can impact measure performance. Users should review the state-specific measure notes to better understand states’ reported rates. CMS is committed to working with states to improve standardized measure calculation and reporting which will increase the ability to do direct state-to-state comparisons in the future.
CMS is committed to working with states to improve standardized measure calculation and reporting on measures across the Scorecard. As with other measurement-focused initiatives, CMS offers states technical assistance and quality improvement opportunities to assist states in collecting and reporting measures displayed in the Scorecard, as well as sharing best practices to support improved state performance.
To view the 2020 MAC Scorecard, please visit: https://www.medicaid.gov/state-overviews/scorecard/index.html
For more information pertaining to the 2020 MAC Scorecard, please visit:
Community Health News and Resources
Newly Released The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Control Hypertension
Nearly one in two adults have hypertension, and only about one in four people have it under control—placing millions of Americans at heightened risk for heart disease and stroke, the first and fifth leading causes of death in the U.S. Read the Call to Action for resources that will start improving high blood pressure control in your community.
Oct. 15 National Latinx AIDS Awareness Day
The Latino Commission on AIDS (LCOA), the Hispanic Federation, and other groups organize this day to better reach Hispanic/Latino communities, promote HIV testing, and provide HIV prevention information and access to care. Visit the HHS Minority Population Profiles to learn how HIV/AIDS is impacting these communities.
October is National Health Literacy Month
Visit the HHS Office of Minority Health’s Think Cultural Health website for information on how to provide effective communication that considers the cultural, health literacy, and language needs of the populations you serve.
Serving on the Frontlines: The Impact of Faith and Community Leaders Countering Human Trafficking for Over 20 Years
Upcoming Webinar: Thurs. Oct. 15, 2020. 2:00 p.m. EDT, Register here.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Join this webinar highlighting the contributions of faith and community leaders who have worked diligently to counter the detrimental effects of modern day slavery in all of its forms.
COVID-19 Related News and Updates
Episode 1: Tell Me More About Vaccines
Right now, researchers and scientists are working to develop a safe and effective vaccine against the virus and the disease it causes, COVID-19. Learn in a newly released 6.5 minute HHS video what makes vaccines so important, and how history, science, experience, and ingenuity all point to the eventual development of one or more successful vaccines against the coronavirus.
Updated Guidance on How COVID-19 Spreads
CDC updated its guidance on how COVID-19 spreads and includes information about the potential for the airborne spread of the SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19). This update acknowledges the existence of some reports showing limited, uncommon circumstances where people with COVID-19 infected others who were more than 6 feet away or shortly after the COVID-19-positive person left an area. In these instances, transmission occurred in poorly ventilated and enclosed spaces that often involved activities that caused heavier breathing, like singing or exercise. *Also read Scientific Brief: SARS-CoV-2 and Potential Airborne Transmission
Adolescent with COVID-19 as the Source of an Outbreak at a 3-Week Family Gathering
There is increasing evidence that children and adolescents can transmit SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Read about the CDC investigation supporting this evidence here.
COVID-19 Partner Update October 19, 2020: Campus Guidebook – Slowing the Spread at US Colleges and Universities
Mon. Oct 19, 2020, 3:00 p.m. EDT, Register here.
CDC experts share updates on their COVID-19 response and include a presentation on Slowing the Spread at US Colleges and Universities. Submit your questions by 10/14 to email@example.com with “Partner Call 10/19” in the subject line. *You can also register for the Oct. 26 CDC Partner Update “Take the Fright Out of Fall Holidays- Gatherings and Travel Guidance” here.
In Case You Missed It
Mental Health, Substance Use, and Suicidal Ideation During the COVID-19 Pandemic
While it is known that communities have faced mental health challenges related to COVID-19–associated morbidity, mortality, and mitigation activities, new data reports that during June 24–30, 2020, younger adults, racial/ethnic minorities, essential workers, and unpaid adult caregivers experienced disproportionately worse mental health outcomes, increased substance use, and elevated suicidal ideation. Read the report for implications related to public health practices.
Grants and Funding Opportunities
*For funding resources targeted to rural communities browse the Online Library: Funding & Opportunities. RHIhub identifies and summarizes funding and opportunities for rural communities, including federal, state, and foundation opportunities.
Appalachian Investments Supporting Partnerships In Recovery Ecosystems (INSPIRE) Initiative
The INvestments Supporting Partnerships In Recovery Ecosystems (INSPIRE) Initiative is a $10 million initiative that will provide funding to assist in moving individuals from substance abuse treatment to recovery to employment, with a focus on services that enable and support individual successful entry or reentry into the workforce. Letter of Intent (Required)- Oct 16, 2020. Closing date: Nov 13, 2020
Fostering Innovative Research to Improve Mental Health Outcomes Among Minority and Health Disparities Populations
NOT-MH-20-073 — The National Institute of Mental Health seeks time-sensitive input from all interested parties on the most innovative research and research priorities to improve mental health outcomes among racial/ethnic minority and health disparities populations. Learn more here. Response date: Oct. 30, 2020.
Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Grants and Guaranteed Loans
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), financing and grant funding for agriculture producers and rural small businesses is available to purchase, install, and construct renewable energy systems or complete energy efficiency improvements. Geographic coverage: Nationwide. Closing date: Nov 2, 2020.
Combating Opioid Overdose through Community-level Intervention
Projects must evaluate these community-based efforts to assess their efficacy in reducing opioid-involved overdose and other harms of opioid use, particularly in the regions of the United States with the highest rates of fatal and non-fatal opioid-involved overdoses. Closing date: Nov. 2, 2020.
DOL H-1B Rural Healthcare Grant Program
FOA-ETA-20-12 Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration- The H-1B Rural Healthcare Grant Program aims to alleviate healthcare workforce shortages by creating sustainable employment and training programs in healthcare occupations (including behavioral and mental healthcare) serving rural populations. Closing date: Nov. 13, 2020.
Rural Health Network Development Planning Program
HRSA-21-021 – The purpose of this grant program is to promote the development of integrated health care networks and bring together key parts of a rural health care delivery system, particularly those entities that may not have collaborated in the past, to work together to establish or improve local capacity and coordination of care. Closing date: Nov. 16, 2020.
Comprehensive High-Impact HIV Prevention Programs for Community-Based Organizations
The CDC supports the development and implementation of high-impact HIV prevention programs, including PrEP and nPEP services. Closing date: Nov. 20, 2020.
MAT Waiver Eligibility Training
A free online and computer-based training series for physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants that satisfies some of the requirements to obtain a waiver for prescribing buprenorphine to treat opioid use disorder. Closing date: Nov. 23, 2020.
Rural Health Care Services Outreach Program
HRSA-21-027 — The Outreach Program is a community-based grant program aimed towards promoting rural health care services by enhancing health care delivery to rural underserved populations in the local community or region. Closing date: Dec. 1, 2020.
Youth Garden Grant
Youth Garden Grants are awarded to schools and community organizations with youth-centered garden programs. Awards will include funding and gardening supplies to schools and community organizations with youth-centered garden programs. Closing date: Dec. 18, 2020.
Community Connect Broadband Grant Program
Grants for communities without broadband access to provide residential and business broadband service and connect facilities such as police and fire stations, healthcare, libraries, and schools. Closing date: Dec. 23, 2020.