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NCHN Healthcare News Digest

Issue #19 | Monday, January 24, 2011

+ NCHN Reminders & Upcoming Events


Upcoming NCHN Calls

  • Board of Directors Meeting/Call:
    Tuesday, January 25 @ 11:00 AM ET

  • 2011 Annual Conference Planning Committee Call:
    Thursday,  January 27 @ 12:20 PM ET
  • Executive Coaching Team Training Call:
    Wednesday, February 9 @ 11:00 AM ET – 12:30 PM ET
  • 2011 Annual Conference Planning Committee Call:
    Thursday, February 10 @ 12:30 PM ET
  • Program Development Committee Call:
    Tuesday, February 15 @ 1:00 PM ET – 2:30 PM ET
  • Executive Committee Call:
    Monday, February 21 @ 1:00 PM ET
  • 2011 Annual Conference Committee Call:
    Thursday, February 24 @12:30 PM ET

NCHN Orientation Sessions

NCHN has scheduled 2 more Orientation Sessions!

The Orientation Sessions will provide an overview of the programs and services of NCHN and review the benefits of your membership. This will also give you the opportunity to meet other new NCHN members and/or recently hired network directors. (We are using the term “recently” very liberal --as some of the directors may have been in their positions for several months, but not had the opportunity to attend a NCHN conference and/or an orientation call.)

The following items will be discussed: Mission of NCHN; Strategic Plan and Goals for 2010-2013; Membership Benefits; Business Partners Program; Committees.

  • Friday, February 11: 2:00 - 3:30 PM ET
  • Wednesday, February 23: 12:00 - 1:30 PM

Pre-registration is required: To register for one of these sessions, email

Peer-to-Peer Sharing Sessions with HRSA Network Planning Grantees

  • February 16 @ 1:30 PM ET
>> More information on Peer-to-Peer Sharing Sessions...

+ NCHN Members' News

Share your Network's news with other NCHN Members...
Send a link to your news by email to

2011 NCHN Conference+ 17th Annual NCHN Conference

Don't miss your networking opportunity of 2011!

Please join us in Scottsdale, AZ, April 17-20, 2011 for the annual gathering of NCHN members.  This year’s Conference Planning Committee has been working extra hard to plan a conference that promises to make an impact!  With two pre-conference workshop offerings, along with two and half days of educational sessions, all aimed at improving your skills as a network leader, there is something for everyone.  Members of the Conference Planning Committee have strived to provide all conference participants with take home tools that will assist you in boosting the success of your network. 

+ HRSA Announcement: New Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 Grant Competition: Health Center Planning Grants

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) is pleased to announce the release of Funding Opportunity Announcement HRSA-11-021: Health Center Planning Grants.  Health Center Planning Grants (HCPGs) are considered to be a useful aid in the development of viable proposals to establish new health centers (i.e. Community Health Center (CHC), Migrant Health Center (MHC), Health Care for the Homeless (HCH), and Public Housing Primary Care (PHPC) Programs that will meet Federal requirements for need, services, management, and governance under the Health Center Program. A summary of the key health center program requirements is available at   HRSA is offering HCPGs to expand the current safety net on a national basis by targeting planning and developmental efforts in areas not currently served by a funded health center and/or in areas of unmet need.  Organizations eligible to compete include public or nonprofit entities, including tribal, faith-based and community-based organizations. 

Visit the website at: to access the HRSA-11-021: Health Center Planning Grants application guidance detailing the eligibility requirements, review criteria and awarding factors for organizations seeking a HCPG in FY 2011.  Additional technical assistance information is available.

The application for completing the Health Center Planning Grant application process is divided into two phases:

Phase 1:
Applicants will enter and complete the Standard form SF 424, Project Summary/Abstract and the HHS Checklist.  These documents must be completed and successfully submitted via by 8:00 PM ET on or before March 18, 2011.

Phase 2:
After completing the portion of the application process, applicants will enter HRSA’s EHBs and complete all other components of the application which must be submitted by 5:00 PM ET on or before April 8, 2011.

Technical Assistance Call

January 24, 2011 at 1:30 ET
Call In: 1-866-844-9416
Passcode: HRSA
For replays through April 8, 2011, 1-866-455-0586 (toll-free).
Replay Passcode: 12011

 Attend by Joining Webinar: Instructions

1. Join the meeting online
2. Verify that the Conference Meeting/Number is 743175597
3.  Enter the required fields.
4. Indicate that you have read the Privacy Policy.
5. Click on Proceed.

>> For more information about this funding opportunity, please contact Xanthia James in the Office of Policy and Program Development at 301-594-4300 or

(Source: HRSA Announcement, email sent Jan. 19, 2011)

+ Physician program to improve rural health

People living in rural areas have more difficulty gaining access to critical health services, but a new program based in Morehead seeks to reduce those barriers.

The Rural Physician Leadership Program (RPLP) aims to provide better and consistent care to rural populations by raising a team of homegrown physicians.

A partnership of the University of Kentucky College of Medicine, St. Claire Regional Medical Center and Morehead State University, the RPLP is unique to the commonwealth, and is designed to produce physicians who are trained in and remain to practice in rural Kentucky, according to the program’s Web site.

>> Continue reading... (Link to Article originally printed in The Morehead News on Jan. 14, 2011) (Source: Rural Assistance Center Health Update, email sent Jan. 18, 2011)

More from RAC Health Update (Jan. 18, 2011)

+ RESCHEDULED: National Provider Call on 2011 Physician Quality Reporting System & Electronic Prescribing Incentive Program

Originally scheduled for Tue Jan 18, 1:30-3pm EST
Rescheduled for Thu Jan 27, 1:30-3pm EST

(Email from CMS)

For those who registered to participate in this afternoon’s national provider call, please be aware that the call is being rescheduled.  Due to inclement weather conditions in the Washington, DC / Baltimore metropolitan area, some of the presenters for this afternoon’s call have been prevented from attending.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this, but appreciate your understanding.  The rescheduled national provider call will be held on Thu Jan 27, 1:30-3pm EST.  Registration information for the new call will be shared as soon as it is available, as well as posted to the CMS website at

Additionally, a CMS Open-Door Forum on the Physician Quality Reporting System and eRx Incentive Program is being held on Tue Jan 25, 1:30-3:30pm EST.  The Open-Door Forum will focus on [1] understanding the basics of the 2011 Physician Quality Reporting System, [2] understanding claims-based reporting for the 2011 eRx Incentive Program, and [3] reporting requirements for the Maintenance of Certification Program.  To attend, dial 800-837-1935 and use the conference ID 34438298.

>> Get more information... (Source: CMS Medicare e-News, email sent Jan. 19, 2011)

+ United States and China Launch Public-Private Partnership on Healthcare

Increasing collaboration in the healthcare sector

On January 19, 2011, on the occasion of the State Visit of President Hu Jintao to the United States, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (Commerce) joined with China’s Ministries of Health (MoH) and Commerce (MOFCOM) to announce their support for the establishment a new public-private partnership in the healthcare sector.

Initially, twelve U.S. companies and six supporting organizations will participate in this partnership, alongside the supporting U.S. and Chinese Government agencies. The partnership will be organized around U.S. healthcare industry strengths and government capabilities in order to foster long-term cooperation with China in the areas of research, training, regulation and the adoption of an environment that will increase accessibility to healthcare services in China. Participating U.S. companies initially include 3M, Abbott, Chindex, Cisco, General Electric, IBM, Intel, Johnson & Johnson, Medtronic, Microsoft, Motorola, and Pfizer. Supporting organizations include AdvaMed, the Alliance for Healthcare Competitiveness, the American Chamber of Commerce in China, the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, PhRMA and the U.S.-China Business Council.

“The economic and social development of any nation depends on the health and productivity of its people,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “This partnership builds on a strong foundation of bilateral cooperation in this critical sector of our economies.”

>> Continue reading... (Source: | ASPA | Newsroom, Jan. 19, 2011)

+ Statement by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on vote by U.S. House of Representatives to repeal the Affordable Care Act

“Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, Americans are finally getting the freedom and security they deserve in their health care.

“Over the last ten months, I have seen firsthand how the law is making a difference in Americans' lives, from establishing a new Patient’s Bill of Rights that outlaws some of the worst insurance company abuses to beginning the process of ending insurance company discrimination against the 129 million Americans with pre-existing health conditions.

“If the law were repealed, these protections would be taken away, and America’s seniors would lose important new Medicare benefits, including savings on their prescription drugs and new health and wellness benefits.

“A recent analysis by our Department shows that the Affordable Care Act will sharply reduce the cost of health insurance for millions of Americans.  A family of four making $55,000 is projected to save $6,000 a year in 2014.  For a working family with a $33,000 income, the savings could be up to $10,000 – the difference between being able to afford health insurance and going without it.

“Repealing the Affordable Care Act would raise health insurance costs for families, add to our federal deficit, put control back in the hands of insurance companies, and take away the freedom and health security being realized by millions of Americans.  That would be the wrong direction for our country, and would be disastrous for the health and well-being of American families.”

“Finally, I want the people who are benefiting from the Affordable Care Act – including families, seniors, and small business owners – to know that this vote does not change the law and that this Department will continue to work every day to implement this vital law.”

(Source: | ASPA | Newsroom, Jan. 19, 2011)

+ Funding Opportunity: Delta Health Initiative Cooperative Agreement

Deadline: March 15, 2011

Offered by ORHP

Purpose: The purpose of the DHI Cooperative Agreement Program is to fund an alliance of providers to address longstanding unmet rural health needs (access to health care, health education, research, job training and capital improvements) in the Delta. The goal of the DHI is to improve the health of people living in this historically distressed region. HRSAs Office of Rural Health Policy funded a 5 year cooperative agreement in the amount of $24.75 million in FY 2006, and $23 million in FY 2008. The grantee is working with 10 partners on projects aimed at improving Chronic disease management, Health education, Intervention Wellness promotion, Access to health care services, Health Information Technology, Workforce training, Care coordination, and Construction of health facilities The consortium proposed 24 projects, and devised communication and coordination systems among themselves. Three of these projects were major public works undertakings, entailing the construction of public health facilities. Through these projects, DHI supports multiple HHS, HRSA and ORHP goals and objectives, including improving the safety, quality and access to health care.

Eligibility: To be eligible an organization must be a non-Federal, not-for-profit alliance.

>> Get more information... (Source: Rural Assistance Center Health Update, email sent Jan. 18, 2011)

+ HHS announces new resources to help states implement Affordable Care Act

On January 20, 2011, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced a new funding opportunity for grants to help states continue their work to implement a key provision of the Affordable Care Act – Health Insurance Exchanges.

When the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented in 2014, Health Insurance Exchanges will provide individuals and small businesses with a “one-stop shop” to find and compare affordable, high-quality health insurance options.

“States are moving forward, implementing the Affordable Care Act and making reform a reality,” said Sebelius.  “These grants will help ensure states have the resources they need to establish exchanges and ensure Americans are no longer on their own when shopping for insurance.”

Health Insurance Exchanges will bring new transparency to the market so that consumers will be able to compare plans based on price and quality and will offer all Americans the same insurance choices members of Congress will have.  By increasing competition among insurance companies and allowing individuals and small businesses to band together to purchase insurance, Exchanges will also lower costs.

>> Continue reading... (Source: | ASPA | Newsroom, Jan. 20, 2011)

+ Resistance to change means few physicians have full-service EHRs

Despite a marked increase in the number of doctors using electronic health records (EHRs) during the past two years, only about 1 in 10 physicians has a fully functional EHR system, according to combined results of a pair of reports by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Tom Handler, analyst for the research firm Gartner, said one of the main barriers to adoption is concern about the productivity and usability of EHR systems. Current meaningful use criteria also doesn’t take aim with incentives that address what physicians consider some of the most critical reforms needed in healthcare today, such as payment of duplicate tests. And then there’s simply resistance to change a process that’s worked for decades, according to Dr. Harry Greenspun, chief medical information officer for Dell and a member of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMMSS). “It’s really easy to write a prescription; you just jot it down on note paper,” Greenspun said. “On a computer screen it can take a lot longer.”

>> Get the full story... (Source: Telemedicine and e-Health News Alert, Jan. 21, 2011)

+ Environmental Public Health Tracking 101

A new CDC online course, Environmental Public Health Tracking 101, provides an overview of the major components of environmental public health tracking. The course is divided into 12 modules within three sections. Topics include how to use the National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (, surveillance and epidemiology, types of tracking data, and geographic information systems.

The online course is available at The course can be accessed by entering "Tracking 101" in the search box. Continuing education credit is available at no charge for nurses, health educators, and other health professionals.

>> Access the online course...

+ Brain Teaser of the Week: Einstein's Riddle


There are 5 houses in 5 different colors. In each house lives a person with a different nationality. The 5 owners drink a certain type of beverage, smoke a certain brand of cigar, and keep a certain pet. No owners have the same pet, smoke the same brand of cigar, or drink the same beverage.

Somebody owns a fish. The question is: who?


  • The Brit lives in the red house.
  • The Swede keeps dogs as pets.
  • The Dane drinks tea.
  • The green house is on the left and next to the white house.
  • The green homeowner drinks coffee.
  • The person who smokes Pall Mall rears birds.
  • The owner of the yellow house smokes Dunhill.
  • The man living in the center house drinks milk.
  • The Norwegian lives in the first house.
  • The man who smokes Blends lives next to the one who keeps cats.
  • The man who keeps the horse lives next to the man who smokes Dunhill.
  • The owner who smokes Bluemaster drinks beer.
  • The German smokes Prince.
  • The Norwegian lives next to the blue house.
  • The man who smokes Blends has a neighbor who drinks water.

>> View the answer...

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