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NCHN eNews
May 17, 2011
Dear NCHN Members and Friends,

Welcome to the latest issue of the NCHN Weekly Digest. This week, we are highlighting two funding announcements and a message from NRHA regarding rural HHS funding. As promised last week, we are including the list of 5 members who received HRSA Network Development grants. Congratulations to these members and good luck to those applying for the recently announced Rural HIT Network Development Grants.

As always, if you have news to share or have feedback, please email us.







NCHN Coffee/Tea Chat

Topic: Pulling it Through: Implementation in my Unique Network

Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2011 @ 11:00 AM ET

As we discussed during our last conversation, NCHN's annual meeting was a tremendous opportunity to engage in new ways of leading networks and sustaining the contributions you, your staff and your board are making.  If you participated in the conference, think about one powerful tool or observation you walked away with and be prepared to share:  what it is, why it made an impact on you and, how you are or how you will use it in your network.  In another words, are you "pulling it through to implementation".  And, for those of you who didn't actually attend the conference, you will do so virtually!  

Don't forget, if you have questions before we talk on Wednesday, take a moment to post them on our section on the NCHN on-line forum!  Rebecca and I are looking forward to our coffee/tea break with you!  Call in information is posted on the forum. 

Mary Kay

» COFFEE/TEA CHAT FORUM (If you are unable to access the forum, register here)

Membership Directory

We recently sent emails to each member network requesting a photo of you (our primary NCHN contact) and a paragraph or two describing your network. If you have not sent your photo and description in, please send them by Friday, May 20th. We are excited to get the directory out to you! We hope it will enhance your connections and help you know who might have information that can help your network.



From the Forum

There are no new Topics posted this week. Have a question for the members?


The following sentence is false. The preceding sentence is true. Are these sentences true or false?



HRSA Network Development Program Grantees

A list of the new HRSA's Network Development Program Grantees is available on HRSA's web site.

To access the list:

1. Go to
2. Click the button that says "Go"

Congratulations to the following NCHN Members who received awards:

Clayton Health Systems, Inc.
Grant No: D06RH21667
FY 2011 Amount: $168,062
View Abstract (pdf)
(Union County Health and Wellness Network, NM – Kristen Christy)

Eastern Area Health Education Center
Grant No: D06RH21669
FY 2011 Amount: $179,600
View Abstract (pdf)
(Arizona Rural Women’s Health Network, AZ – Holly Crump)

Northern Michigan Hospitals, Inc.
Grant No: D06RH21677
FY 2011 Amount: $180,000
View Abstract (doc)
(Health and Wellness Cooperative of Northern Michigan, MI – Tracy Andrews)

Peacehealth DBA Ketchikan General Hospital
Grant No: D06RH21678
FY 2011 Amount: $180,000
View Abstract (pdf)
(Prince of Wales Health Network, AZ – Esther Hammerschlag)

Westcare Kentucky, Inc
Grant No: D06RH21683
FY 2011 Amount: $180,000
View Abstract (doc)
(Hancock County Rural Health Network, TN – Jenifer Noland)

The HCC of Lafayette County

The HCC of Lafayette County's Wellness Works - May 2011 is available online.

If you have network news, send it to for inclusion in the next newsletter.



AgriSafe Network Webinar: Osteoarthritis in Rural Youth

May 26, 2011 - 12-1pm CDT

Topic:  Prevention of Osteoarthritis in Rural Youth
Presenter: Amber Wolfe, AgrAbility Program Coordinator, Arthritis Foundation-Indiana Chapter, Heartland Region 

Webinar link: 
Enter your name in the guest login box and click on 'Enter Room'
We will be using Adobe Connect for this session -- run a connection test on your system

This webinar series is made possible by support from the National Rural Health Association.

Upcoming Webinar Addressing Behavioral Health Services in the Affordable Care Act

Wednesday, May 18, 2011 @ 3 PM ET

What does health reform mean for people in recovery from addiction, consumers of mental health services, and their families? The National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery, Faces & Voices of Recovery, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness jointly present a series of five webinars sponsored by SAMHSA to provide information on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its implementation in the states to state-based advocates from the mental health and addiction disorders consumer, recovery, and family communities.

Register now for the first webinar, an overview of ACA and how it helps people with mental health and addiction disorders and their families. The webinar will give advocates the tools they need to begin interacting effectively with state legislators, administrators, and others charged with development of mechanisms and regulations for implementation of ACA.


CMS Special Open Door Forum 2011 Physician Quality Reporting System and Electronic Prescribing (eRx) Incentive Programs: ICD-10 Conversion

May 26, 2011
2:30 - 3:30 PM ET

Dial: 1.800.837.1935
Conference ID: 44767414




$100 million in Affordable Care Act grants to help create healthier U.S. communities

Prevention grants to focus on improving health, which can lower costs

May 13, 2011 (HHS News Release) - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced today the availability of over $100 million in funding for up to 75 Community Transformation Grants. Created by the Affordable Care Act, these grants are aimed at helping communities implement projects proven to reduce chronic diseases – such as diabetes and heart disease. By promoting healthy lifestyles and communities, especially among population groups experiencing the greatest burden of chronic disease, these grants will help improve health, reduce health disparities, and lower health care costs.  

“Community Transformation Grants will empower local communities with resources, information, and flexibility to help make their residents healthier,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “By helping to transform communities at the ground level, these efforts can have a major impact on the health of Americans.”

“It is critical that we sustain our work to develop and spread effective programs that address leading killers like heart disease, cancer, and stroke,” said Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which oversees the Community Transformation Grants program.  “These funds will allow us to build on successful programs that have helped people lead healthier lifestyles and help us save millions in health care costs in the future.”


HHS offers new tools to help states lower Medicaid costs, provide better care

May 11, 2011 (HHS News Release) - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced a series of initiatives to work with states to save money and better coordinate care for the 9 million Americans enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid. The new initiatives include better access to Medicare data and better coordination of health care between Medicare and Medicaid. The initiatives will be led by the new Federal Coordinated Health Care Office (the Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office), which was created by the Affordable Care Act to help make the two programs work together more effectively to improve patient care and lower costs.

“Medicaid costs are largely driven by the complex medical needs of low-income seniors and people with disabilities who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. We know that by working together, we can provide better, more coordinated care while lowering health care costs and saving money for states,” said Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Donald M. Berwick, M.D. “Medicare and Medicaid spends $300 billion each year to care for people enrolled in both programs. Better coordinated care for this vulnerable population could yield savings and improve care and coverage in Medicaid.”


From NRHA: Rural HHS funding at risk

The 2012 HHS budget could be $3 billion less than it was 7 years ago.

May 16, 2011 - The House Appropriations Committee just released the maximum funding levels available for each subcommittee and set the dates for mark-ups on each subcommittee’s final bills. For the Labor, Health and Human Services Subcommittee, the mark-up is July 26 with the final Appropriations Committee mark-up on Aug. 2. Based on the initial mark-up schedule, the Labor-HHS bill will not be considered on the House floor until Sept. 7 at the earliest.

This suggests that specific program funding levels will not be available for some time; however, a quick initial analysis shows that funding for the Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Subcommittee is below the allocation for FY 2005 ($139.2 billion in FY 2012 and $142.3 billion in FY 2005).

The fight to maintain crucial rural dollars will be more important than ever in the upcoming year. Click here to check NRHA’s new appropriations tracker web page for regular updates, and contact your senator today.

Also, in response to the overwhelming demand for more Medicaid information, NRHA has created a new section on our web site focusing on federal Medicaid news.

As always, watch NRHA’s Rural Health Voices blog for updates from Washington and around the nation.



Public Prevention Health Fund: Community Transformation Grant

Letter of intent due: June 6, 2011
Application due: July 15, 2011

The purpose of this program is to create healthier communities by 1) building capacity to implement broad evidence and practice-based policy, environmental, programmatic and infrastructure changes, as appropriate, in large counties, and in states, tribes and territories, including in rural and frontier areas and 2) supporting implementation of such interventions in five strategic areas (Strategic Directions) aligning with Healthy People 2020 focus areas and achieving demonstrated progress in the following five performance measures outlined in the Affordable Care Act: 1) changes in weight, 2) changes in proper nutrition, 3) changes in physical activity, 4) changes in tobacco use prevalence, and 5) changes in emotional well being and overall mental health, as well as other program-specific measures.



Strengthen and Improve the Nation's Environmental Public Health Capacity through National, Non-Profit, Professional Public Health Organizations to Incorporate Health in All Policies

Letter of intent due: May 17, 2011
Application due: June 16, 2011

The purpose of this program is to fund national public and private organizations to promote Environmental Public Health by educating decision-makers, key stakeholders, and the community. These organizations will provide technical assistance, resources and educational opportunities to federal, state and local level stakeholders and nontraditional partners (partners that do not usually have public health as their primary mission and goal, but will have areas of common or overlapping interest that includes public health, such as, but not limited to, education organizations, transportation organizations, environmental organizations, healthcare organizations, faith-based/community organizations and other federal or tribal agencies). These activities will strengthen the nation's capacity to promote healthy and safe environments and prevent harmful exposures.




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