July 30, 2019
  WVPCA Weekly Outlook Newsletter
    A Newsletter on Community Centered Healthcare
 

We offer this publication as a member service of the West Virginia Primary Care Association (WVPCA).

If you have questions regarding our organization, WVPCA membership, or if you have content to suggest for this newsletter, please contact Pam Moore, Member Relations Coordinator, by email or by phone at (304) 346-0032.

Sincerely,

West Virginia Primary Care Association
1700 MacCorkle Avenue
Charleston, WV 25314-1518
304-346-0032
1-877-WVA-HLTH
Quick Links: In This Issue.....

CHC Resources
State News



News 
Flash!

Hillsboro Medical Center Now Open 
Read the entire article from the Pocahontas Times  here

How to pick a doctor (or break up with one)
Read the entire article from WV Public Broadcastin here

Mylan chair calls merger with Upjohn, a Pfizer division, 'truly transformational'
Read the entire article from WV MetroNews here

Time to expand community health
Read the entire article from Forbes here

WV legislature considers seeking federal OK to import drugs from Canada
Read the entire article from the Charleston Gazette-Mail here

Unseen Impacts of Opioid Epidemic: More Autopsies, Staff Shortages and Transporting the Dead
Read the entire article from WV Public Broadcasting  here
Medicaid Celebrates 54th Anniversary
Today (July 30) marks the 54th anniversary of Medicaid. Community Catalyst has created a Medicaid Birthday Toolkit to celebrate. Use the toolkit to spread the word via social media, through a letter to the editor and more.
August is National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM)
This annual observance highlights the efforts of healthcare professionals to protect patients of all ages against vaccine-preventable diseases through on-time vaccination.
The Public Health Foundation and CDC have developed a  digital communication toolkit with resources for partners, including:
  •          Key messages
  •          Social media content
  •          Social media graphics
  •          Newsletter announcements
  •          Links to educational resources for healthcare professionals
West Virginia is a leader in the success of immunization rates and was one of only a few states that did not have a measles outbreak this year.   The CDC will also be launching a website for the #HowIRecommend video series by August 1st.  Please share these resources with your colleagues and on your social media platforms using the hashtag  #ivax2protect.
WVPCA NewsWVPCA
Webinar Registration Open - "What If You Don't 'Like' An Employee's Social Media Content" 
"What If You Don't 'Like' an Employee's Social Media Content" is a presentation that will explore some of the pitfalls of social media in the modern age and help employers feel more confident in what they can and cannot do in response to social media posts of which they do not approve.  Please join the WVPCA and Brock Malcom of Bowles Rice on August 7th to discuss ways to:

Better familiarize the attendee with applicable law, including the First Amendment and its Right to Free Speech;
  • Help employers begin thinking about what needs to be included in their organization's Social Media Policy; and
  • Explore some real-life examples of social media posts and to engage in thoughtful dialogue regarding the employer's legal options in each case.
If you have any questions please email Pam Moore at  Pam@wvpca.org
 
This webinar is scheduled for August 7th at 1:00 pm. Registration is available here
Date Change | WV Project ECHO  Workshop Now on August 15
Project ECHO┬« is a lifelong learning and guided practice model that revolutionizes medical education and exponentially increases workforce capacity to provide best practice specialty care and reduce health disparities through its hub-and-spoke knowledge sharing networks. Virtual clinics are conducted through the use of Zoom videoconferencing platform, allowing primary care providers to present de-identifed patient cases to specialists and participate in didactic presentations. 

During the workshop participants will receive background information on the ECHO model, discuss the current offerings from WV Project ECHO, and have the opportunity to meet and  network with WV Project ECHO Hub and Spoke Members.  

The workshop will be held August 15 from 11 am - 3:00 pm at the WVPCA office (1700 MacCorkle Ave, SE. Charleston, WV). Attendees will be eligible to receive technical assistance and equipment (video, audio, computer, etc.) for their sites to best participate in WV Project ECHO.

Lodging on August 14 and lunch on August 15 will be provided.

To register, click here.  Find the  event flyer here
State NewsStateNews
27th Annual WV Rural Health Conference October 8-11 
The 27th Annual West Virginia Rural Health Conference is scheduled for October 8-11, 2019 at the DoubleTree Hotel in Huntington, WV. This year's conference theme is "Country Roads: Moving WV Rural Health Forward." 

T his conference provides attendees with education and information about innovation, best practices and leadership in rural health. The conference includes state and national rural health updates along with providing attendees the opportunity to network with others interested in improving rural health care in West Virginia.

For more information, click here
National NewsNational
Living Proof: Recovery Supports for People with Opioid Use Disorder or Co-Occurring Disorders Considering or Using Medication-Assisted Treatment
Join SAMHSA for Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS), a three-part virtual learning series focusing on recovery supports for people considering or using Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for OUD or co-occurring disorders. Register for any of the three sessions. The first session has passed. Information on the next two is available below. 
  • Delivering Recovery Supports to People with OUD Who Are Participating in MAT 
    Wednesday, July 31  | 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET
  • Delivering Recovery Supports to People with OUD Who Are Considering MAT 
    Wednesday, August 7  | 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET
New Funding to Support Women Affected by the Opioid Crisis - RESTORE Grant Program
This week, the Women's Bureau announced a new grant program to help women affected by the opioid crisis re-enter the workforce. The Re-Employment, Support, and Training for the Opioid Related Epidemic (RESTORE) grant will award $2.5 million to organizations that assist in providing coordinated, employment-focused services to women.
The RESTORE program will provide approximately four to eight grants to governments of states and outlying areas, Indian/Native American Tribal governments or organizations, state or local workforce development boards, or nonprofit organizations with IRS 501(c)(3) status, including community-based or faith-based organizations. The recipients can use the grant to foster cooperative relationships among a wide range of entities, including key stakeholders, public health and substance abuse treatment professionals, and other human services and support service providers, to provide skills development and employment services to women workers.
Organizations applying must provide the following types of activities:
  • Providing skills development and employment services to women workers affected by the opioid crisis;
  • Establishing a new program or expanding an existing program to quickly address the urgent challenges faced by women in areas of the country hardest hit by the opioid crisis; and
  • Forming partnerships with key stakeholders, which may include women's organizations and state and local women's commissions, as well as agencies and organizations in workforce development, public health and substance abuse, human services, and other supportive services.
Click here to view the solicitation for grant applications. Apply by August 23, 2019.

For more information about the program see the frequently asked questions and view the press release.
Community Health Center ResourcesResources

By Justin M. Harrison, Esq.
 
In our last installment of the Legal Minute, we reviewed the general requirements of the Family and Medical Leave Act ("FMLA"), and we left you with this cliffhanger: What happens if an employee needs more time following exhaustion of their FMLA leave due to their own serious health condition? Typical lawyer response: "It depends!" We unpack this topic below.
 
West Virginia employers, including FQHCs, need to be mindful about the West Virginia Human Rights Act (WVHRA). This is the primary employment statute in West Virginia, and it covers a lot of different issues. For example, the WVHRA requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, so long as the accommodation does not pose an undue burden.
 
The italicized phrases noted above highlight the three primary issues that employers need to evaluate for someone who has exhausted their FMLA leave and needs more time. Does the employee have a disability? Is the request for more time a reasonable accommodation? Does the request for more time pose an undue hardship?
 
Most of the time, if an employee has exhausted their FMLA leave due to a serious health condition, then they probably have a physical or mental health impairment that qualifies as a disability for purposes of the WVHRA, but not always. Although this process is not as well-defined as the certification process under the FMLA, if you need or want confirmation that the employee has an impairment that qualifies as a disability, you can make limited inquiries with the employees and their provider. You're not required to assume that every impairment qualifies as a disability.
 
The next issue to evaluate is whether the request for additional time constitutes a "reasonable accommodation." This is where things can get tricky. The WVHRA does not provide us with an exhaustive list of reasonable or unreasonable accommodations. Instead, we're given this directive: A reasonable accommodation is one that will allow an employee to perform the essential functions of her job. This begs the question: How can an employee perform the essential functions of her job if she needs a leave of absence? This issue has been extensively litigated for several years, and different conclusions have been reached by different courts. There is a trend in other jurisdictions which suggests that "reasonable accommodation" requests should not be used as alternative leave entitlement to supplement the FMLA, but the law is not quite that clear in West Virginia. Let me offer a rule of thumb: If an employee exhausts FMLA leave and needs another day or another week, you probably should give the request serious consideration. If the employee requests another three months or can't give you a definitive return to work date, then additional scrutiny is warranted and it's fair to question whether the employee is entitled to the requested accommodation.
 
Finally, the third issue noted above is whether the request for a leave of absence constitutes an "undue burden." When evaluating requests for accommodation, the question of undue burden is typically a highly fact-dependent concept, but if an employee has already received 12 weeks of FMLA leave, it will be difficult for most employers to argue that an additional day or an additional week will constitute an undue burden.
 
What's the take away? If an employee exhausts FMLA leave based on their own serious health condition, don't automatically assume that you have no further obligation to the employee. If the employee needs additional time before returning to work, you're required to evaluate that situation as a request for accommodation under the WVHRA.
 
***
 
Justin M. Harrison is a labor & employment lawyer at 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 you can follow him on Twitter @wvhrlawyer.
Jackson Kelly PLLC
 
The WVPCA has retained the law firm of Jackson Kelly, PLLC to provide legal guidance to the WV Primary Care Association and its members.
 
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.
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 Program
  • Role of the Risk Manager
  • Risk Management Plan
  • Credentialing and Privileging
  • Communication with Patients
  • Tracking Systems for Diagnostic Tests, Referrals, and Hospitalizations
  • Patient Grievances and Complaints
  • Communication among Providers, Staff, and Community Partners
  • Claims and Lawsuits
  • And more!
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.
ECRI Institute 
 
The  ECRI Institute  offers numerous policy templates that can be used as guidance consistent with the needs of community health centers. To take a look at their library of policy templates, click  here .

If you are not an ECRI member, creating a free account before accessing these materials is required. ECRI Institute resources are provided for free on behalf of HRSA.

To Access Policies: 
  • From the main page, click on the clinical risk management link on the left hand side of the page
  • Click sample policies and tools listed under tool-kits on left side of page
Click on the + sign to access individual templates.
WVPCA Staff

Sherri Ferrell, MBA | Chief Executive Officer
Debra Boyd | Chief Financial/Chief Operations Officer
Staci Arnold, MBA | Data Service & Integration Specialist
Jennifer Boyd, PA-C, PCMH-CCE | Clinical Consultant
Warne Dawkins, MBA | Health Data Analyst
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 | Special Programs Coordinator
Amanda West | Staff Accountant
Emma White, RN | Clinical Quality Improvement Coordinator 
To sign up to receive the WVPCA Weekly Newsletter, click HERE
West Virginia Primary Care Association
  1700 MacCorkle Ave. Charleston, WV 25314| (304) 346-0032 | WWW.WVPCA.ORG
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