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NCHN Healthcare News Digest

Issue #3 | Monday, August 23, 2010

+ GrantStation (Members Only) Webinar

Please join Rebecca Davis, Executive Director, National Cooperative of Health Networks Association (NCHN), and Cynthia M. Adams, CEO of GrantStation for this short and informative tour of the GrantStation website. The webinar will review the many tools and resources available on GrantStation to help you identify the right grantmaker for your health care programs, as well as write compelling letters of inquiry and powerful grant proposals. This interactive session will use projects from participants to demonstrate how the GrantStation website can assist you in identifying health care funding opportunities. There will be lots of time for questions. This webinar will be held on Wednesday, August 25th at 2pm EDT.

Register for the Meeting...

+ In Rural California, A Debate On How To Save A Hospital

Rural hospitals across the nation have struggled to stay afloat. There are, of course, fewer patients in rural areas, and many of them are on public health insurance programs that pay far less than private insurers.

Residents in Modoc County, in the remote northeastern corner of California, will soon vote on whether to tax themselves to save their local hospital.

Continue reading... (Source: NPR, News > Health > Health Care, August 19, 2010)

+ How the Affordable Care Act Will Hold Insurers Accountable

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we now have new tools and resources for States to hold insurance companies accountable and make the health insurance market fairer for consumers.  Just this week, Secretary Sebelius announced the first round of grants to help states improve the oversight of proposed health insurance premium increases, take action against insurers seeking unreasonable rate hikes, and ensure consumers receive value for their premium dollars.  The Affordable Care Act has also created grant programs to help states educate and empower consumers in the private health insurance market, and establish new health insurance Exchanges in 2014.

HHS has held Webchats to discuss the Affordable Care Act and answer consumer questions. View previous Webchats and browse more information from HHS at (Source:

+ $46 Million in Grants to Help States Crack Down on Unreasonable Health Insurance Premium Hikes

45 States and the District of Columbia to Receive $1 Million Each to Make Health Insurance Markets More Consumer-Friendly and Transparent

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced grant awards of $46 million to 45 States and the District of Columbia. These Affordable Care Act grants will be used to help improve the oversight of proposed health insurance premium increases, take action against insurers seeking unreasonable rate hikes, and ensure consumers receive value for their premium dollars.

Continue reading... (Source: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, News Release, August 16, 2010)

+ HHS Draft Strategic Plan Points to Health IT To Improve Care

HHS' new Draft Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2010-2015 (pdf) highlights how health IT can play a key role in the agency's efforts to foster innovation in the health care system, Federal Computer Week reports.

Continue reading... (Source: iHealthBeat, Topics > Policy, August 16, 2010)

+ Reminder: AgriSafe Webinar

Neurological Dysfunction and Disease in the Agricultural Health Study

Webinar: Tuesday, Aug. 24th @ 12:00pm CDT

Presenter: Freya Kamel, PhD, MPH, Staff Scientist, Epidemiology Branch, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences


  • Describe  the limits of our knowledge of pesticide neurotoxicity. Identify generally accepted findings and areas that still need more research. 
  • Describe the findings of the Agricultural Health Study regarding the relationship of pesticide exposure to neurologic symptoms. Identify the strengths and limitations of this research.
  • Describe the findings of the Agricultural Health Study regarding pesticide exposure and Parkinson's disease.  Identify the strengths and limitations of this research.
Link to Webinar...

+ ER wait times reduced 22 percent with advanced EHRs

TEMPE, AZ – The patients at hospitals with the most advanced type of electronic medical records are likely to spend 22.4 percent less time in the emergency room than at other hospitals, a new study from the W.P.Carey School of Business at Arizona State University shows.

Continue reading... (Source: HealthcareITNews, News > Industry News > Hospitals & IDNs, August 20, 2010)

+ EHR Incentives - Get the Facts from CMS

Source: Email sent by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology on August 18, 2010

There’s a lot of talk right now about electronic health records, and how health care professionals and hospitals are going to pay for them.

So you probably have a lot of questions about them as well: Am I eligible to receive incentive payments under the Medicare & Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs?  When does the programs begin? How much are the incentive payments?  What do I need to participate?

It’s important that you have a reliable resource to turn to for accurate information. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is the federal agency establishing these incentive programs.  The CMS website is the official federal source for facts about the Medicare & Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. The site contains up-to-date resources that will give you the insight you need to make educated decisions.

Avoid reading false or misleading information. Get the facts from the federal source – the CMS Medicare & Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs website.  Visit  today.


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