Maryland Community Health 
Resources Commission
October  31, 2019 | Issue 52
Larry Hogan, Governor 

Boyd K. Rutherford, Lieutenant Governor

Robert R. Neall, Health Secretary
CHRC Commissioners
Allan Anderson, MD, Chair
Elizabeth Chung, Vice Chair

Scott T. Gibson
J. Wayne Howard
Celeste James
Surina Jordan, PhD
Barry Ronan
Erica I. Shelton, MD
Ivy Simmons, PhD
Julie Wagner
Anthony C. Wisniewski
Mark Luckner, Executive Director
The MDH Office of Minority Health and Health Disparities  

Health Equity Conference "Achieving Health Equity and Cost Reductions Through Clinical-Community Partnerships".

December 5, 2019, Martin's West, Baltimore, MD. 

The program will explore how the Total Cost of Care Model enables community organizations and hospitals to achieve cost savings and preventable utilization reductions, and successful partnerships and models that can be replicated to achieve health equity. Details on registration and agenda can be found   here

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Summit on Primary Care.

April 16-18, 2020, Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center, National Harbor, MD. 

The program is for health care professionals in a variety of settings who are committed to transforming primary care to ensure equitable care and achieve better outcomes. Registration and program details can be found  here .

CHRC issues FY 2020 Call for Proposals

The Maryland Community Health Resources Commission (CHRC) has issued its annual Call for Proposals for FY 2020, which looks to support programs in the following categories: (1) Promoting delivery of essential health care services: primary/preventative care, dental, and women's health care services; (2) Addressing the heroin and opioid epidemic through integrated behavioral health service delivery; and (3) Promoting food security and other efforts to address diabetes through prevention and management.

The Commission is in a position to award approximately $6 million in new grant funding this fiscal year. Strategic priorities in this year's RFP include serving vulnerable populations; promoting health equity and addressing the social determinants of health; and supporting community-based projects that are innovative, sustainable, and replicable.

The CHRC is hosting a public information call for potential applicants on Thursday,  November 7, 2019 , at 10:00 am [ 1.866.247.6034,  Access code:  4102607046 ]. Participation in this call is not mandatory but is encouraged for potential applicants. Following the call, the Commission will post a " Frequently Asked Questions " document on its website RFP .

Letters of Intent will be due no later than  noon on
November 20, 2019, and full grant proposals will be due by  noon on  December 19, 2019 . Grant awards are expected to be made by the CHRC in February 2020.

CHRC grantees highlighted at the annual conference of the Maryland Rural Health Association
The Maryland Rural Health Association (MRHA) hosted its annual conference for 2019, at the Harborside Hotel - National Harbor earlier this month. The conference,
" Driving Rural Communities towards Equity, Prevention, and Personalized Health Care" i nvit ed experts on the national, state and local levels to offer their perspective on the key issues involved in rural health,  social determinants of health,  workforce and economic development . The presentations are accessible  here.
The CHRC has awarded 121 grants totaling $30.4 M to support programs in rural communities. These projects have collectively served more than 85,000 individuals and have expanded access to primary/preventative, dental, and women's health care services; supported School-Based Health Center programs; and promoted the implementation of Mobile Integrated Health programs.  For more information about CHRC grants in rural communities, visit the CHRC website  here.

At the MRHA conference, the CHRC presented an update on the work of the Council on Advancement of School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs)  and described the impact of several CHRC grants support SBHCs. Further information about the School-Based Health Centers can be found at   SBHC .

Left to right: Jen Witten, Maryland Hospital Association; Fran Phillips, Maryland Department of Health; Senator Brian Feldman; Senator Addie Eckardt; former Senator Mac Middleton; Lara Wilson, Maryland Rural Health Association; and Mark Luckner, CHRC.

CHRC welcomes three new staff

The CHRC has hired three new employees: 
Chris Kelter started on July 3rd as the Commission's new Chief Financial Officer. Before joining the CHRC, Chris worked in various roles with the State of Maryland government including experience in fiscal and policy analysis, affordable housing, special projects, information technology and occupation licensure. 

Michael Fay started on October 9th as Program Manager. Before joining the CHRC, Michael was the QA Analyst at Community Clinic in Silver Spring, and has an extensive background in nursing, behavioral and primary health care delivery, clinical research and project management.  

Jen Thayer will start on November 6th as Administrator. Before joining the CHRC,  Jen was the principal assistant for a prominent Maryland lobbying firm in Annapolis, and had primary responsibility for all operations at the firm. Her background includes work on a variety of subjects, from health insurance to public health. 
The Charles County Department 
of  Health's Mobile Integrated 
Healthcare achieves reductions
in avoidable hospital utilization
and EMS services

Three years ago, the Charles County Health Department was awarded a three-year grant for $400,000 grant from the CHRC to start its new Mobile Integrated Health (MIH) program, to serve vulnerable residents who call 911 frequently. The program is also supported by another grant for $150,000 from the University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center.

The Charles MIH Team is an innovative public/private partnership between the Charles County Department of Health, the Charles County Department of Emergency Services, and the University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center. The MIH team consists of a paramedic, a registered nurse, and a community health worker who work to educate and empower clients to take control of their health and help them connect with needed services and resources. Since its inception, the program has served over 125 clients, most of whom have complex medical and social service needs.

The Charles County MIH Program was recognized earlier this year as a Model Practice by the National Association of City and County Health Officials and also received the Governor's Customer Service Award.

Left to right: John Filer, Charles County EMS; Mary Hannah, University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center; Wanda Mahoney, Charles County Department of Health; Pamela Gantt, Charles County Department of Emergency Services; Jennifer Mott, Charles County Department of Health; Amber Starn, Charles County Department of Health. 

The Charles County MIH program is achieving demonstrable results in terms of reducing avoidable hospital and EMS utilization and is empowering residents to manage chronic conditions, including hypertension and diabetes. Looking at three-month pre- vs. post-intervention results for the first 95 individuals served by the MIH Program, the grantee reported the following quantifiable outcomes:
  • ED utilization dropped by 56%
  • Inpatient admissions decreased by 67%
  • 30-day re-admissions dropped by 90%
  • EMS utilization decreased by 58%
  • 68% of clients with hypertension and 38% of clients with diabetes saw improvement
For more information about CHRC grantees leveraging additional resources, click:  here
November is National Diabetes Eye Disease Month. For more information, click  here.

AHRQ Awards $16 Million in Grants to Address Unhealthy Alcohol Use

AHRQ has awarded $16 million in grants to help primary care practices increase efforts to address patients' unhealthy alcohol use. Six grantees will work with more than 700 primary care practices over three years to implement and evaluate strategies to increase the use of evidence-based interventions such as screening for unhealthy alcohol use; brief interventions for adult patients who drink too much; and medication-assisted therapy for patients with an alcohol use disorder. Unhealthy alcohol use, which affects almost a third of adults, is the third leading cause of preventable death and is a major risk factor for many health, social and economic problems. Access the press release and a video , as well as more information about the grants. For more information click  here.

Maryland Department of Health launches electronic toolkit to help prevent overdose deaths

In conjunction with International Overdose Awareness Day on Saturday, Aug. 31, the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) launched an innovative tool to help prevent overdose deaths, the Naloxone Electronic Toolkit (NET).

Naloxone is a medication that can reverse an opioid overdose and can help save lives when administered quickly and correctly. The toolkit was created by the Behavioral Health Administration (BHA) of the Maryland Department Health, and contains content that can be promoted on public and employee websites. By providing access to information about naloxone and naloxone administration, Marylanders can be better prepared to both recognize the signs of an overdose and know how to respond appropriately. For additional information click  here.

Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore earns national recognition

The Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore recently announced $6.2 million in charitable grants for FY 2019. The funds were awarded through more than 1,700 grants supporting various community needs across the Lower Eastern Shore. The Foundation has provided $84 million in grants to the community since 1984, and recently earned its 3rd consecutive accreditation from the National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations, the nation's highest standard for philanthropic excellence. For the CFES website, click  here.