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WVPCA Weekly Outlook
A Newsletter on Community Centered Healthcare
February 26, 2021
In This Issue...
Emergency Management News - WVPCA News
Outreach & Enrollment - What We're Reading - State News
National News - Funding Opportunities
All Community Health Centers are Taking
Part in Weekly Community Vaccine Events
Check Out How Minnie Hamilton Health System Braved the Cold
Minnie Hamilton Health System staff braved the cold to provide COVID-19 vaccines to the community.

All clinics require appointments and walk-ins will not be accepted. The community vaccination clinic model will continue to be used each week and additional locations will be added as vaccine supply increases.
News Flash!
WV sees country's 2nd-biggest drop in FAFSA completion rates
Read the entire article from The Charleston Gazette Mail here.

WV seeks increase in COVID-19 vaccination registrations in six rural counties
Read the entire article from The Charleston Gazette Mail here.

Seattle woman, 90, walks 6 miles through snow for vaccine
Read the entire article from WSAZ here.
West Virginia DHHR Unveils Website Section with Details on Administered Vaccinations
As West Virginia health officials continue to work to vaccinate the Mountain State’s population, the state Department of Health and Human Resources has rolled out a new vaccination section on its website.

The new vaccine summary section gives a breakdown of how many people have been vaccinated in each of the state’s 55 counties. Click on this link and then go to the Vaccine Summary at the top of the webpage.

As a whole, West Virginia has received a total of 424,200 doses and allocated 424,200 to community providers. Data shows 398,635 doses have been administered or 94% of the total.

West Virginia has been leading the nation in its vaccination rate.
Antibody Therapy Receives Emergency Use Authorization
Eli Lilly announced that its combination antibody therapy to fight COVID-19 has been granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Lilly’s combination therapy of two antibodies, bamlanivimab and etesevimab, helped cut the risk of hospitalization and death in COVID-19 patients by 70 percent, data from a late-stage trial showed in January. Lilly said the therapy will be available immediately.
HRSA's Health Center COVID-19 Vaccine Program 
As the White House announced earlier this month, HRSA is working with CDC to launch a new Health Center COVID-19 Vaccine Program. The goal is to address health equity in vaccine delivery by providing a direct supply of COVID-19 vaccines to health centers who serve particularly hard-to-reach and disproportionately affected populations.

The program is beginning incrementally at select HRSA-funded health centers that specialize in caring for populations that are disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Pending vaccine availability, HRSA plans to expand the program to all HRSA-funded health centers and Health Center Program look-alikes in subsequent phases of the program. Participating health centers will continue to follow state priority guidelines in administering the vaccine and will be required to store, handle, and administer vaccine according to stated requirements, and to meet necessary reporting requirements.

HRSA has added a new Health Center COVID-19 Vaccine Program category to their COVID-19 FAQ webpage, which contains a dozen new FAQs about the program. As a reminder, other COVID-19 resources on HRSA’s site include our coronavirus-related funding FAQ page and COVID-19 Information for Health Centers and Partners.
State Diabetes Action Plan Released
A law passed during the 2020 legislative session required the WVDHHR Bureau for Public Health to develop a Diabetes Action Plan for the state. The WVPCA participated in the creation of the plan, which was publically released earlier this month. The plan calls for a number of broad-scale changes, including those requiring legislative approval, to improve the prevalence of diabetes in West Virginia.
CHC Leadership in Health Care Hall of Fame
FamilyCare Health Centers president and CEO Craig Glover is part of the West Virginia Executive Magazine's 2021 Class of the Health Care Hall of Fame.

Nominees have made significant contributions to the state’s health care industry and have a passion for making the Mountain State a better, healthier, and happier place to live. 

Craig joins 2020 classmates Dr. C. Donovan "Dino" Beckett, CEO of Williamson Health and Wellness Center and Richard G "Rick" Simon CEO of Community Care of West Virginia.

Congratulations to Craig Glover and the rest of the 2021 Class.
WV CHC Greenway User Group: March Virtual Office Hours
Please join the West Virginia Primary Care Association (WVPCA) and GreenwayHealth for virtual office hours on March 4, 2020 from 11:00 am to Noon. During this one-hour webinar, Harrison Cleworth, Inside Account Executive and Todd Colburn, Account Executive at GreenwayHealth will be joining us to discuss a variety of topics to include: 

  • GreenwayHealth Updates
  • UDS Reflection
  • VAMS
  • COVID-19
  • SDOH
  • Patient Engagement & Remote Patient Monitoring

Target Audience: Administrative, Billing/Financial, Clinical, and Quality staff from CHCs who utilize Greenway.  

Registration Closes March 3, 2021 at 12:00pm (Noon).
Social Determinants of Health Screening: Implementing a Workflow Webinar
Please join Rachel Merino, Chief of Staff at Valley Health Systems and Crystal Hawkins from Cabin Creek Health Systems for a presentation and a discussion to assist health centers to improve SDoH screening and referral workflow on Thursday, March 18th from 12:30 - 1:45PM. This is a great opportunity to learn first-hand from two West Virginia health centers who have successfully implemented SDoH screening into a standardized process within their organizations. The presenters will describe the implementation and workflow process and participants will have the opportunity to ask questions. This webinar is a perfect learning opportunity no matter what stage of contemplation or implementation you are in. 1.5 Nursing CE available pending final approval. 

Participants will have the ability to:

  • Name at least 2 benefits of screening for social determinants of health.
  • Describe possible workflows that can be tested within their health center.
  • Name at least 3 free resources available to health centers to assist them with SDOH workflow planning.

TARGET AUDIENCE: Quality Improvement staff, Nursing staff, Care Management staff and anyone who may be involved with SDOH workflow.

This event is intended only for Community Health Center Staff.

Registration closes on March 17th at 12:00 PM EST.
2021 Special Enrollment Period for Marketplace Coverage
In accordance with the Executive Order signed by President Biden, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that the Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for the Health Insurance Marketplace® is available to consumers in the 36 states that use the HealthCare.gov platform from Monday, February 15, and will continue through Saturday, May 15.

The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency has affected millions of people throughout the country, and many Americans remain uninsured or underinsured and need access to affordable health coverage. The SEP will allow individuals and families to enroll in the health coverage they need. Consumers who are uninsured can take this opportunity to look for coverage and find out if they qualify for financial assistance to help pay for health insurance. Currently 9 out of 10 consumers enrolled in coverage through HealthCare.gov receive financial help and 75% of consumers can purchase a plan for $50 or less per month after financial assistance. In addition, all of the plans at HealthCare.gov cover essential health benefits, such as primary care visits, and cover many preventive care services with no out-of-pocket costs to the consumer.  
Special Enrollment Opportunities
CMS encourages people who are seeking health insurance coverage to take advantage of the Federal Health Insurance Exchange special enrollment period currently available now through May 15 on HealthCare.gov.  
Additionally, individuals who were eligible for another special enrollment period during the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)-declared emergency period may also qualify for another SEP to gain coverage based on when their coverage could have started if they had been able to enroll sooner.
Medicare regulations provide a special enrollment period for certain Medicare beneficiaries who reside in the area where an emergency/disaster declaration has been made (or rely on help making health care decisions from someone who lives in the affected area). Medicare beneficiaries who were eligible for another enrollment period, but did not make an election as a result of the emergency, will be able to make the missed enrollment election during the declared emergency/disaster or up to two months after the end of the emergency/disaster. 
The Biden administration has signaled that states may no longer be able to pursue Medicaid work requirements. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has begun a process to rollback demonstrations of work requirements under Section 1115 waivers. A new issue brief by the Kaiser Family Foundation showcases the challenges Medicaid members face if subject to work requirements during the pandemic-induced economic downturn. 

Buffering…remember that from dial-up internet days? Slow internet speeds are still a problem in West Virginia, which is one of only five states losing ground in terms of broadband connection. In fact, West Virginia is 48th in terms of broadband connectivity. An article from the non-profit news organization “Mountain State Spotlight” took a look at how the state backslid on broadband and what it is doing to fix it.

A recent national poll by C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, affiliated with the University of Michigan, emphasized the problem of children receiving routine, preventive dental care during the pandemic. According to the poll, one in three parents reported problems accessing dental care. The challenge of accessing dental care was even greater among children insured by Medicaid, which must provide dental benefits for children.  

If you come across something worth sharing, please feel free to forward to Joshua Austin, WVPCA Policy and Communications Director at joshua.austin@wvpca.org.
State News
Shenandoah Valley Medical System and Valley Health Systems to Receive COVID-19 Vaccine
Senator Joe Manchin announced that Valley Health Systems and Shenandoah Valley Medical System, will soon be receiving direct COVID-19 vaccine dose shipments through the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) COVID-19 Vaccination Program. COVID-19 vaccines provided to community health centers under this program are separate from the state’s weekly allocation, and will increase the overall vaccine supply in the state.
“Today I received notification that two West Virginia health center systems will soon be receiving direct shipments of COVID-19 vaccine doses to administer to West Virginians. West Virginia continues to lead the nation in vaccination efforts and our health centers have been integral to the distribution program. The HRSA COVID-19 Vaccination Program is aimed at ensuring equitable vaccine distribution across the state and our health centers, who serve roughly 27 percent of West Virginians, are well equipped to do just that. Vaccines are essential to defeating this horrible virus and I am incredibly pleased that our health centers have been chosen to receive doses directly. I am also pleased West Virginia will be receiving another weekly vaccine allocation increase from Pfizer, increasing the state’s ability to vaccinate more West Virginians. As vaccine production continues to increase, I will continue to work with the Biden Administration to quickly procure enough doses for every West Virginian who wants to be vaccinated,” said Senator Manchin
“We are thankful for the Biden administration understanding the valuable role community health centers play in the COVID-19 pandemic response,” said Sherri Ferrell, CEO of the WVPCA. “This allocation will help serve our most vulnerable residents and improve health equity in vaccine distribution.”
National News
Learn More About the National Shortage Designation 2.0: Update Preview Auto-HPSA Portal 
This summer, HRSA will conduct the National Shortage Designation Update (NSDU) 2.0, for all HPSAs (Geographic, Population, Other Facility and Automatically Designated Facility).
In the past, Auto-HPSA Facility points-of-contact (POCs) received their Update Previews via email. HRSA will begin releasing Update Previews via Auto-HPSA Portal accounts.

This training will provide participants information on:
  • How to access and view Update Preview results within the Auto-HSPA Portal,
  • How to submit a system data rescore request, and
  • The system data rescore review processes and timelines.
Training Session I
Thursday, March 4, 2020
2:00-3:00 EST
Training Session II
Tuesday, March 9, 2020
2:00-3:00 EST
Black History Month
Every February, Black History Month celebrates the unique contributions and achievements of African Americans to American history. Some ways to celebrate may include educating yourself on black history. You can explore black literature, film and music that convey the unique voices and experiences of the culture.

Here are just a few of the online resources to learn more about the history and contributions of African Americans:

Visit the Shortage Designation Modernization Project for more information.

Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center Virtual Conference
The Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center will be going ALL VIRTUAL this year. They are committed to providing a great virtual experience and one way to do that is to break up the normally packed full days into smaller blocks of time across multiple days. The draft agenda is now available and will become even more detailed in the upcoming weeks. Stay tuned – they will be sharing periodic updates about the innovative things they will be doing to make sure it’s not “just another Zoom meeting”!
Announcing the HHS Mask Distribution Program
On February 24, to support President Biden’s call to “mask up” for 100 days in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the White House announced a partnership between HHS and the Department of Defense (DoD) to deliver free masks to HRSA-funded health centers and Health Center Program look-alikes for distribution to patients, staff, and community members. This initiative recognizes health centers as vital partners in community-based outreach efforts to reach vulnerable populations. DoD is also working with the Department of Agriculture to supply masks to 300 food banks as part of the effort.

Through this program, health centers and look-alikes will receive no-cost, high-quality, washable masks in child and adult sizes, packaged in pairs of two. The masks will be produced consistent with mask guidance from the CDC. All masks will be made in America, and the distribution will not impact the availability of masks for health care workers. Health centers are encouraged to distribute individually-wrapped packages of two masks, as well as a flyer with CDC guidance on how and why to wear masks, to patients, staff, and community members for each person in their household.

DoD anticipates shipping the masks beginning in March, as production ramps up. HRSA will send an email communication from the Electronic Handbooks (EHBs) to each health center and look-alike with the specific number of masks that will be shipped to the health center’s administrative address on record within the EHBs. If your health center does not want to receive a shipment of masks, you will be able to opt out using the BPHC Contact Form.

HRSA have added several new questions about the HHS Mask Distribution Program to the COVID-19 FAQ webpage.
340B Program Recertification Reminder
The 340B Program HRSA Recertification Period for HRSA and IHS grantees (except STD, TB, and FP) is February 1 to March 1, 2021. 

Before certifying, Authorizing Officials and Primary Contacts must set up user accounts in the 340B Office of Pharmacy Affairs Information System (340B OPAIS). Failure to set up accounts will result in removal from the 340B Program. AOs and PCs must create individual accounts. All active 340B IDs associated with an AO’s account must be updated for recertification and completed by the deadline. 

For assistance with the 340B OPAIS, please utilize the online help that is available. HRSA also has information and tutorials available on the OPA website here. For further assistance, please contact the 340B call center at apexusanswers@340bpvp.com or 1-888-340-2787 (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Eastern).

Important: If you do not recertify, you will not be an eligible 340B entity!
Have You Taken the RTAT? Time is Running Out!
The WVPCA invites you to complete the Readiness to Train Assessment Tool (RTAT) survey before February 28, 2021. This survey tool was developed to assess organizational readiness to implement Health Professions Training (HPT) programs in health centers across the country and is strongly encouraged by HRSA. 
Every FQHC and FQHC look alike in the country is being invited to participate—make sure YOUR health center’s input is included!
So far, we have had a 55% completion rate among WV CHC’s! Thanks to all those who have completed the survey and to those who have not, please do so before the survey closes!
Every staff person is invited to complete an initial set of questions about general readiness to engage in health professions training. In addition, if you feel you can comment on your health center’s readiness to engage in one or more specific health professions training program(s), we welcome you to continue on and share your opinions on a wide range of programs, from medical assistant or dental assistant training, to NP and PA students, to postgraduate residents and fellows in multiple disciplines—and more.  
Once the survey results are compiled, the WVPCA can help you develop a workforce plan to include health professions trainings and/or pipeline programs, as well as offering T/TA to help you achieve your workforce goals.

Please contact Shannon Parker, WVPCA Director of Health Center Operations at Shannon.parker@wvpca.org should you have any questions or concerns.
Upcoming Training Opportunities
Integrated Primary and Behavioral Health Care Services and Value-Based Reimbursement 
Value-based reimbursement (VBR) offers the opportunity to transform the health care system using a more equitable, integrated, and person-centered approach. This webinar will review the basics of value-based reimbursement and what providers need to know and do to navigate the transition successfully to better meet the needs of complex and vulnerable populations, while effectively meeting targeted outcomes for quality and cost. Topics will include elements of a strategic “roadmap” that health centers can use to plan for VBR as they work towards health care that is viable and sustainable for all.

This webinar will address the following questions: 
• What systems capabilities does my health center need to enhance or develop for successful implementation of VBR?
• How can we assess and plan for new processes (clinical, financial and technology) required for successful implementation of VBR?
• What are the workforce implications for VBR in an integrated care setting?

Participants can earn 1 CE for attending. 

Wednesday, March 3, 2021
3:00 - 4:00 PM EST
NACHC, in collaboration with Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell (FTLF), will be holding three virtual FTCA Office Hours to answer health center clinical leaders’ specific questions.

Topics covered include coverage for COVID-19 related activities, navigating telehealth, coverage for virtual services, issues related to COVID-19 vaccine delivery, deeming of volunteer health professionals, preparing for a virtual site visit, and risk management.

The most up-to-date FTCA FAQ is available here; go to “FTCA Requirements.” 

Submit your questions in advance to Klaepke@nachc.com.
HITEQ COVID-19 Vaccine Electronic Patient Engagement Options
HITEQ is offering webinars next month on several patient engagement vendor options. HITEQ (Health Information and Technology, Evaluation and Quality) Center is a HRSA-supported entity to support health centers in full optimization of their EHR/HIT systems for continuous, data driven quality improvement. 

Join HITEQ and WELL Health for a brief presentation followed by facilitated questions and discussion on their electronic patient engagement platform and the features within the platform that can assist health centers with COVID-19 vaccine communication and dissemination.

Thursday, March 4, 2021
1:00 PM EST 
Join HITEQ and CareMessage for a brief presentation followed by facilitated questions and discussion on their electronic patient engagement platform and the features within the platform that can assist health centers with COVID-19 vaccine communication and dissemination.

Thursday, March 11, 2021
1:00 PM EST 
Today with MACRAE
The HRSA Bureau of Primary Health Care will provide health center program updates in “Today with Macrae”.

 Tuesday, March 2, 2021
2:00PM - 3:00PM EST

Join by phone: 833-568-8864
Meting ID: 161 317 0572

Funding and Financial Opportunities
HRSA Released a First-of-its-Kind NOFO for SBSS
HRSA has released a first-of-its-kind Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), the fiscal year (FY) 2021 Health Center Program Service Expansion - School-Based Service Sites (SBSS, HRSA-21-093). SBSS funding will increase the number of patients receiving services through new and expanded school-based service sites. For this funding opportunity, service expansion is defined as new or expanded general primary medical care, behavioral health (mental health and substance use disorder), oral health, vision, and/or enabling services provided to health center patients at school-based service sites provided face-to-face or virtually.

Technical assistance (TA) resources, including a webinar overview of the NOFO, are available on the SBSS TA webpage.

FY 2021 SBSS applications are due in:
  • Grants.gov: Monday, March 22 (11:59 p.m. EST).
  • HRSA’s Electronic Handbooks: Tuesday, April 20 (5:00 p.m. EST).

HRSA will host a question and answer session for applicants:
Tuesday, March 2 - 3:30-4:30 p.m. EST
Meeting/Webinar ID: 161 418 5003
Community Health Center Resources
Jackson Kelly attorneys provide limited consultation to all members of the WVPCA at no charge, as part of the WVPCA contract. There is no limit to the number of calls which any member may make. All inquiries within the scope of professional competence of firm attorneys will be addressed. Inquiries which require expertise not available through the firm will be promptly identified and, when requested, Jackson Kelly will assist in referring the matter to accounting firms, insurance agents, or others as circumstances warrant.

All inquiries, responses and consultation services provided by the firm lawyers will be provided without additional charge beyond the retainer amount, except for matters which require formal opinions, representation of record in litigation, transactional work, e.g. the purchase or sale of real property, or matters which require continued representation, research or consultation beyond a single inquiry or document review.

Justin M. Harrison is a labor & employment lawyer with Jackson Kelly PLLC. He is available for consultation through a special retainer relationship with the WVPCA. Justin can be reached at 304.340.1358 and via email at justin.harrison@jacksonkelly.com.
ECRI Institute
Pandemic Operational Recovery Guide
Operational disruptions to ambulatory care during and after a pandemic are significant. These disruptions may change many aspects of care delivery in ways that impact providers, staff, and patients alike.
Care may be temporarily limited or delivered in nontraditional ways, and recovery of operations may represent a "new normal."
The Pandemic Operational Recovery Guide for Health Centers and Free Clinics was written to assist health centers and free clinics in identifying and minimizing risks as they recover from operational disruptions related to a pandemic.
The handbook contains links to tools as well as links to additional resources for a more comprehensive discussion of individual topics. Readers can refer to descriptive "Strategy" headings in each section, and consult the recommendations, tools, and resources that follow for more detailed information. Although some tools and resources focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, they can be adapted to respond to other public health emergencies.
Risk Management Manual for Health Centers Now Available!
The Risk Management Manual for Health Centers is now available on the ECRI Institute Clinical Risk Management Program website! Designed to support a proactive approach to risk management at health centers and free clinics, the Manual provides background, tips, and how-tos in a manageable format.
Specific areas that are covered include:
Risk Management Programs & Plans
Claims and Lawsuits
Role of the Risk Manager
Patient Grievances and Complaints
Communication with Patients
Credentialing and Privileging
Communication among Providers, Staff, and Community Partners
Tracking Systems for Diagnostic Tests, Referrals, and Hospitalizations

View an archived webinar that provides a guided tour of the Manual and key features. For access to the ECRI Institute Clinical Risk Management Program website or any other questions, email clinical_rm_program@ecri.org.
Sherri Ferrell, MBA | Chief Executive Officer
Debra Boyd | Chief Financial/Chief Operations Officer
Staci Arnold, MBA | Data Service & Integration Specialist
Joshua Austin | Policy & Communications Director
Paula Beasley | Education & Communication Coordinator
Jennifer Boyd, PA-C, PCMH-CCE | Clinical Consultant
John Kennedy, MA | School-Based Health/Behavioral Health Coordinator
Pam Moore | Member Relations Coordinator
Shannon Parker, MBA, PCMH-CCE | Director of Health Center Operations
Ruby Piscopo | Outreach & Enrollment Coordinator
Amanda West | Staff Accountant
Emma White, RN | Clinical Quality Improvement Coordinator
To sign up to receive the WVPCA Weekly Newsletter:
1700 MacCorkle Avenue, SE
Charleston, WV 25314
Phone: 304.346.0032
Toll Free: 1.877.WVA HLTH
This project is/was supported partially/fully by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number U58CS06834 State and Regional Primary Care Associations. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.