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July 30, 2020
  WVPCA Weekly Outlook Newsletter
    A Newsletter on Community Centered Healthcare

Read the entire article from Jackson Newspaper  here.

Medical experts urge US to shut down and start over as coronavirus cases surpass 4 million       
Read the entire article from  CNN  here. 

Fact check: ADA does not provide blanket exemption from face mask requirements 
Read the entire article from USA Today  here.
Updated CMS Fact Sheet for Health Centers

CMS released an update to their Medicare Learning Network (MLN) fact sheet for Federally Qualified Health Centers and Rural Health Clinics during the COVID-19 public health emergency. The update includes a section on the telehealth cost-sharing waiver and examples of submitting proper Current Procedural Technology (CPT)/Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) for qualified preventive services.

HHS Renews Public Health Emergency Declaration for COVID-19

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar has renewed the declaration that a national public health emergency (PHE) exists due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This declaration is effective as of July 25, 2020, and extends the PHE for an additional 90 days until October 23, 2020, or unless earlier terminated by the Secretary. This renewal extends the wide array of waivers and flexibilities that have been issued by HHS in response to COVID-19. It also extends FQHCs' ability to be reimbursed by Medicare for services provided via telehealth, regardless of the patient or provider's location, through approximately October 20, 2020. 

In addition to Medicare payments to FQHCs for telehealth, other policies that are in place only while the PHE is in effect include:
A PHE declaration lasts for 90 days after the HHS secretary declares the PHE or until the secretary says an emergency no longer exists, whichever comes first. Azar can extend the PHE declaration for 90-day periods for as long as the PHE continues to exist, and may terminate the declaration whenever he determines that the emergency is over.
When Is My HRSA FY2021 BPR Due?

Due to the COVID-19 public health emergency and in an effort to provide maximum flexibility to Health Center Program award recipients, HRSA extended the performance period for health centers with a current 2-year or 3-year period of performance scheduled to submit a competitive Service Area Competition (SAC) in FY 2021. These health centers must now submit a Budget Period Progress Report Non-Competing Continuation (BPR NCC, hereafter the BPR) in FY 2021.  (Health centers whose period of performance end date is  not  in FY 2021 are already scheduled to complete an FY 2021 BPR.)  The BPR is available in the HRSA Electronic Handbook (EHB) according to your current budget period start date. See the BPR Submission Schedule for the date your BPR will be available in HRSA EHB, as well as the submission deadline.
HHS Unveils New Public Coronavirus Data System  

The Trump administration has restored public access to coronavirus data reported by hospitals to the federal government, after an outcry over missing data and controversy over a change in the agency that collects it. 

The information is now being published on the HHS Protect website of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) instead of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) National Healthcare Safety Network. 

The change was necessary, officials said, because they believed the CDC's system was too slow, and was unable to keep up with the constantly changing information about the virus.  Read more.
Vaccination Guidance During a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused healthcare providers to change how they operate to continue to provide essential services to patients. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has a resource page to help guide vaccine planning during the pandemic. Ensuring immunization services are maintained or re-initiated is essential for protecting individuals and communities from vaccine-preventable diseases and outbreaks and reducing the burden of respiratory illness during the upcoming influenza season

As you know, information on coronavirus is changing daily.  The WVPCA is working with Federal, State, and local health officials in emergency preparedness activities as well as disseminating appropriate and current information to our Community Health Centers.  This includes up-to-date resources and policies to ensure the continued health and safety of the communities we serve.  

Guidance and resource information can be found on the WVPCA website here and coronavirus.gov.

The theme for this year's National Health Center Week (NHCW), which is August 9th - 15th, is Community Health Centers: Lighting the Way for Healthier Communities Today and in the Future
Community Health Centers serve as the beacon of strength, service, and care in their communities.    Learn more here about NHCW 2020 Focus Days !  We want to hear how you're celebrating this year!   Tell us how you are celebrating the future of Community Health by emailing your event details to events@wvpca.org
Although federal guidance and local circumstances continue to evolve, NCQA is implementing the exceptions noted below for the March 1-September 30, 2020, time frame. This applies to all future surveys that include this look-back period. They will give updates as needed and when new information becomes available.  They suggest primary care practices consult and complete  The Green Center's weekly COVID survey.  While NCQA does not issue or manage this survey, they believe the information gathered is meaningful. The survey helps practices understand and report primary care's capacity to respond to COVID-19.

Practitioners Who Provide Care During a Public Health Emergency:
Organizations do not need to credential practitioners who are not part of their network or practice and are providing care to members/patients as part of a federal, state or local government emergency response team.

CMS 1135 Waivers for State Licensing:
CMS allows states to request a waiver that will temporarily allow out-of-state practitioners to provide services if they are licensed in another state. When credentialing these practitioners in a state that receives a waiver, NCQA will waive the requirement that the organization verify the license to practice for that state.

Health Care Organizations and Practices Whose Operations Are Affected:
NCQA understands that normal operations have been disrupted in many communities, which could affect organizations' ability to meet NCQA requirements. NCQA will be flexible in scoring organization performance during the March-September time frame. Organizations will need to provide documentation regarding the circumstances that interfered with meeting requirements.

Note:  Recognition practices may show evidence from any time in the past year, so organizations may demonstrate that activities were routinely implemented before and after the March-September time frame.
Organizations with an upcoming survey or evaluation in 2020 should contact their Recognition account representative. NCQA will determine if additional accommodations (e.g., longer extensions, virtual surveys, shorter look-back periods) are necessary on a case-by-case basis. Please submit all other questions through My NCQA at my.ncqa.org.
Please contact Shannon Parker at Shannon.parker@wvpca.org should you have any questions.
NCQA updates Recognition publications periodically to clarify guidance, revise resources and refine criteria expectations. Updates are now available for the PCMH and PCSP Standards and Annual Reporting publications. Q-PASS access to the 2021 Annual Reporting Requirements will be available in August.

To download the publications, go to the My Downloads section of My NCQA. Log in using your email address and password. If you have not previously downloaded NCQA publications, refer to the table below for quick access. 

Publication by Program

Notable Changes
  • There is no longer a New York State-specific PCMH publication; you can find all New York State publication information directly in the main PCMH Standards and Annual Reporting publication.
  • In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NCQA has limited changes to Annual Reporting for 2021. PCMH and PCSP Annual Reporting Requirements for reporting period January 1-December 31, 2021, remain nearly identical to the preceding reporting year.
  • NCQA has expanded and clarified PCMH program guidance for use of telehealth to ensure that practices can continue to meet PCMH requirements. Read our recent blog post to learn more. 
A table of updates summarizing changes to the publications is available in the FAQ section of NCQA.org. Click here for the PCMH FAQ and here for the PCSP FAQ. Updates to PCMH and PCSP Transforming Standards go into effect for all enrolled and Recognized practices on August 1, 2020. 

The School-Based Health Alliance is hosting a five-part virtual learning series-Summer School with the School-Based Health Alliance. They have been listening to the field, and have missed seeing many of you at their annual convention. To help meet your needs in the current landscape, they're offering this virtual series on pressing topics. They are excited to announce that Pedro Antonio Noguera, Ph.D. is the presenter for our first session, Race, Equity, and Inclusion in School-Based Health Care. Dr. Noguera is the Emery Stoops and Joyce King Stoops Dean of the USC Rossier School of Education. A sociologist, Dr. Noguera's research focuses on how schools are influenced by social and economic conditions, as well as by demographic trends in local, regional, and global contexts.   Registration information can be found here .
Offset trauma for students by promoting positive experiences

As time moves closer for schools to re-open, so many individuals are working feverishly together to create a plan to address the many challenges of this pandemic. So many resources are needed and many are very expensive or difficult to obtain such as more healthcare professionals or personal protective equipment. However, there is one resource that everyone who works with students can bring to that first day of school to help mitigate some of the trauma that students have experienced, and it is simply listening and having a positive experience with the students.   Find out more about the power of promoting positive experiences with students.
State NewsStateNews
Peer Recovery Support Specialist Virtual Training

Peer recovery is an individualized journey that offers a unique perspective and understanding of the difficulties associated with substance use disorder and its impact. Peer Recovery Support Specialists (PRSS) are an essential component to the Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) Continuum of Care.
Through shared understanding and respect, PRSS staff help link individuals to treatment and encourage them to stay engaged in the recovery process.

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Bureau for Behavioral Health is hosting quarterly regional PRSS training on Wednesday, August 19, 2020 at 9AM to 12:45PM to provide educational opportunities on important issues pertaining to addiction and recovery. 
Each participant will receive a copy of the agenda and a training certificate which can be used toward certification hours if approved by their respective credentialing boards or agencies. No charge to participate, but registration is required.

PRSS Supervision, Trauma Care for Peers, and Motivational Interviewing
  • Jon Dower, ICADC, CIP, SAP, Director of Recovery Services, Ascension Recovery Services
  • Emily G. Finomore, LPC, Outpatient Manager, Child and Adolescent Therapist, WVU Medicine, Behavioral Medicine
  • James A. Matney, Drug and Alcohol Counselor, WVDHHR Bureau for Behavioral Health
Wednesday, August 19, 2020 | 9:00 AM to 12:15 PM
National NewsNationalNews
FDA Puts Hand Sanitizers on Import Alert, 
Adds More to Do-Not-Use List  

The FDA has placed certain brands of hand sanitizer on an import alert as more products have been found to contain methanol, a chemical that can be toxic when absorbed into the skin or ingested.   An import alert allows the FDA to detain products coming into the U.S. to stop them from being distributed. The agency said it placed the alert on certain brands of hand sanitizer to prevent more people from being exposed to methanol poisoning as a growing number of hand sanitizers have been found to contain the toxic chemical. 

The FDA said it is working with manufacturers to recall hand sanitizers and is encouraging retailers to remove all the ones included on its do-not-use list , which consisted of 87 types of hand sanitizer July 28. It is also asking retailers and distributors to immediately stop selling hand sanitizers on the list. 

The FDA is urging consumers not to use any hand sanitizer products from any of the manufacturers included on the list, even if the specific product isn't named on the list, because they are still at risk of methanol contamination.  "Manufacturers' failure to immediately recall all potentially affected products is placing consumers in danger of methanol poisoning," the FDA said. 

The FDA has found methanol in hand sanitizer products on its do-not-use list at levels ranging from 1 percent to 80 percent.  It advises people not to flush the hand sanitizers or pour them down the drain when disposing of them.

Read the agency's full news release   here.
Upcoming Training OpportunitiesUpcomingNationalTraining
HHS Telemedicine Hack Learning Community

Although telemedicine use has grown exponentially during the COVID-19 pandemic, many ambulatory providers still lack the knowledge and skills needed to implement video-based telemedicine into their practices. To support wide adoption of telemedicine, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response is partnering with the ECHO Institute at the University of New Mexico and the Public Health Foundation's TRAIN Learning Network to deliver a 10-week, virtual peer-to-peer learning community called Telemedicine Hack.  

Key components of Telemedicine Hack include: 
  • Five teleECHO sessions on key topics (e.g., workflows, documentation, reimbursement) highlighting best practices and case studies from the field 
  • Five virtual "office hour" discussion panels with case presenters, government agencies, topical experts, and stakeholder associations responding to your questions
  • Inter-session peer-to-peer learning facilitated via virtual discussion boards and ad hoc interest groups
  • CME/CEU credits are available for attending, at no cost to participants
For more information about this series and to register, please click here for the flyer or contact c19ECHO@salud.unm.edu.

There is no cost to join the Telemedicine Hack initiative. All ambulatory providers (e.g., primary care, surgical, rural/urban, dental, mental health, solo practitioners) are invited to participate.

Wednesdays, July 22 - Sept 23, 2020 | 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
FinancialAnchorFinancial and Funding Resources
New Markets Tax Credit Allocation Awards Announced: Capital Fund Receives $50 Million

The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund announced the awardees for New Markets Tax Credits, intended to stimulate investment and economic growth in low-income urban and rural communities. Capital Fund received a $50 million award, one of 76 Community Development Entities (CDEs) to receive awards nationwide. Congratulations to our fellow award recipients! 

This award will enable Capital Fund to increase lending to health centers seeking to finance facilities and operational growth to better serve their communities and expand access to care.
If your health center needs additional funding for an upcoming expansion or renovation project, Capital Fund may be able to help.  

Click here to learn more.
CommunityHealthCenterResourceCommunity 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.
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.
COVID-19 Resources for Health Centers
ECRI Institute 
Federally qualified health centers and free clinics are on the front line in testing and treating patients who may have been exposed to COVID-19. Use these resources to keep your staff and patients safe:
In addition, ECRI's COVID-19 Resource Center includes free resources addressing the provision of clinical care and managing the supply chain. Updated several times per week, highlights include:
Additional guidance is available directly from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), including:

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
John Kennedy, MA | School-Based Health/Behavioral Health Coordinator
Pam Moore | Member Relations Coordinator
Shannon Parker, MBA, PCMH-CCE | Director of Health Center Operations
Amanda West | Staff Accountant
Emma White, RN | Clinical Quality Improvement Coordinator 
Paula Beasley | Education and Communications 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
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.