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The Partnership Center Newsletter

November 14, 2013 Edition

In this issue, you will find…


Dear Partners:

World AIDS Day is December 1st. This day serves as an opportunity for every sector, including faith and community-based organizations, to take action to reduce HIV infection rates, increase access to care, and ensure that members of our communities are free from stigma and discrimination. Please see the Featured Update from Dr. Howard Koh, Assistant Secretary for Health, to learn more about how your community can join this effort.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, more people than ever will have access to high-quality, life-extending care. As HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius wrote recently, “One of the things we’ve learned since October 1 is that the demand for affordable health coverage is very, very high…HealthCare.gov can and will be fixed, and we are working around the clock to deliver the shopping experience that you deserve.”

Americans can sign up by December 15, 2013, for coverage starting as early as January 1, 2014. Open enrollment continues until March 31, 2014. In addition to using HealthCare.gov, individuals and families can apply for health insurance by phone or through an in-person assister. To apply by phone, you can call (toll-free) 1-800-318-2596 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; there are operators available that speak 150 languages. To contact a navigator or assister in your community to help with the enrollment process, go to LocalHelp.HealthCare.gov. More information about getting covered can be found at http://www.healthcare.gov/how-do-i-apply-for-marketplace-coverage.

I also want to highlight an upcoming webinar co-hosted by the HHS Partnership Center and The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention on “The Role of Faith Leaders in Suicide Prevention.” The webinar will take place on Thursday, December 5th at 4 p.m. EST. For more details and to register, please visit http://edc.adobeconnect.com/faithcommunities2/event/event_info.html. For additional webinars on the Affordable Care Act and Let’s Move Faith and Communities, please see our Upcoming Events.

We look forward to partnering with many of you in the coming months. To share your efforts related to World AIDS Day, your ideas for promoting National HIV Testing Day on June 27th, or any other work, please contact the HHS Partnership Center at Partnerships@hhs.gov or 202-358-3595.

Sincerely,

Acacia Bamberg Salatti, Acting Director
Center for Faith-Based & Neighborhood Partnerships
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

Featured Update:
Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Howard Koh on Faith Communities and World AIDS Day

by Howard K. Koh, MD, MPH

Assistant Secretary for Health

On December 1, 2013, we will mark the 25th observance of World AIDS Day. It offers us an opportunity to honor the past, plan for the future and educate ourselves and our loved ones about HIV prevention, testing, and treatment.

Furthermore, we can use this time to address the ongoing stigma that puts people at risk for two issues – HIV and suicide – connected by the linchpin of sexuality. HIV continues to disproportionately affect young, gay and bisexual men – especially those in the African American and Latino communities. A major driver is the stigma that LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) people continue to face, both in their homes and in their communities.

Specifically, stigma and discrimination increase the likelihood that LGBT persons will engage in behaviors that pose major health risks, including unprotected sex and attempted suicide. Of special concern are young people, since:

  • LGBT youth are significantly more likely than their straight peers to be sexually active, to have had multiple partners, and to have engaged in unprotected sexual activity – greatly increasing their risk for HIV infection.[1]
  • LGB youth are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers.[2]
  • Nearly 50% of young transgender people have seriously thought about taking their lives, and 25% report having made a suicide attempt.[3]
  • LGB youth who suffer from high levels of family rejection are 8.4 times more likely to have attempted suicide compared to LGB peers who reported no, or low, levels of family rejection.[4]

In short, family acceptance is key to helping LGBT youth develop into healthy adults and to lowering their risks for both HIV and suicide. Faith communities can play a major role in promoting this acceptance, and in supporting families whose children may be at risk.

On World AIDS Day, we must focus efforts on eliminating the stigma that puts so many of our children at risk for life-threatening challenges. I encourage you to visit AIDS.gov to learn more about HIV prevention. You can also find suicide prevention resources at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) website.

And, if you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Families, as well as faith and community leaders, can all join in renewed national efforts to create an AIDS-free generation.
 


 


Mental Health Parity Final Rule Released

Last week, the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and the Treasury jointly issued a final rule increasing parity between mental health/substance use disorder benefits and medical/surgical benefits in group and individual health plans.

This action also includes specific additional consumer protections, such as:

  • Ensuring that parity applies to intermediate levels of care received in residential treatment or intensive outpatient settings;
  • Clarifying the scope of the transparency required by health plans, including the disclosure rights of plan participants, to ensure compliance with the law;
  • Clarifying that parity applies to all plan standards, including geographic limits, facility-type limits and network adequacy; and
  • Eliminating the provision that allowed insurance companies to make an exception to parity requirements for certain benefits based on “clinically appropriate standards of care,” which clinical experts advised was not necessary and which is confusing and open to potential abuse.

The Affordable Care Act builds on the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act and requires coverage of mental health and substance use disorder services as one of ten essential health benefits categories.  Under the essential health benefits rule, individual and small group health plans are required to comply with these parity regulations. 

“This final rule breaks down barriers that stand in the way of treatment and recovery services for millions of Americans,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “Building on these rules, the Affordable Care Act is expanding mental health and substance use disorder benefits and parity protections to 62 million Americans. This historic expansion will help make treatment more affordable and accessible.”

The final rules may be viewed at www.federalregister.gov. A fact sheet on the rules is available here: http://cms.hhs.gov/CCIIO/Programs-and-Initiatives/Other-Insurance-Protections/mhpaea_factsheet.html.


“Second Sunday” enrollment events

In an effort to increase awareness and enrollment in the health insurance marketplace, faith-based liaisons from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) are launching “Second Sunday” enrollment events with faith-based organizations across the country on Sunday, December 8th

The intent is to utilize a variety of ministries and strategies within faith communities to promote the December 8th enrollment day. They include: Pulpit Announcements; Demonstration of HealthCare.gov website; Men’s Ministries; Mother Boards; First Lady Ministries; Youth Ministries; Health Ministries; and Share with Family and Friends. In addition, Missions Ministries and Mercy Ministries are good sources to help those who are homebound or who are caregivers.

By working with faith-based liaisons and partner organizations, including Champions for Coverage, Certified Application Counselors, Navigators, Enroll America, and other In-person Assisters, the CMS Regional Office will have a presence in churches across the nation and can assist consumers with enrollment in the insurance marketplace. CMS has developed pulpit announcements for clergy leaders to utilize as well as bookmarks and flyers the local faith-based organizations can distribute to promote the Second Sunday events.

If your organization is interested in participating, please contact your regional office faith-based liaison using the following regional email address. Click here to see which HHS region you are in.
 

Region 1:   ROBOSORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 6:  RODALORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 2:   RONYCORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 7:   ROKCMORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 3:   ROPHIORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 8:   ROREAORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 4:   ROATLORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 9:   ROSFOORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 5:   ROCHIORA@cms.hhs.gov
Region 10: ROSEA_ORA2@cms.hhs.gov

 


The Affordable Care Act Helps Refugees

The Affordable Care Act helps refugees and their families afford health insurance so that they can visit the doctor and get the health care they need to stay healthy. Refugees can start applying for health insurance by completing the application that is available at www.healthcare.gov or calling the Health Insurance Marketplace consumer call center at 1-800-318-2596 and asking for an interpreter.

Apply before December 15, 2013 for health insurance to start on January 1, 2014. Learn more about how the Affordable Care Act helps refugees by watching this video that features recently resettled refugees in the U.S.; the video is available in English, Sgaw Karen, Arabic, Somali, Nepali, and Kinyarwanda: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/orr/health.


How To Order Health Care Law Posters and Other Materials

Organizations and individuals interested in ordering posters, flyers, fact sheets and other materials can go to the CMS Product Ordering website for more information:

1. Type in the URL address of the CMS Product Ordering Website: http://productordering.cms.hhs.gov  

2. Select the link Create New Account.

3. For questions, please e-mail: support@cmspow.us.


Webinar on the Role of Faith Leaders in Suicide Prevention

The HHS Partnership Center and The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention will co-host a webinar, “The Role of Faith Leaders in Suicide Prevention.”

Date: Thursday, December 5

Time: 4-5 p.m. Eastern (3-4 p.m. Central; 2-3 p.m. Mountain; 1-2 p.m. Pacific)

For more details and to register, visit http://edc.adobeconnect.com/faithcommunities2/event/event_info.html

Please test your computer compatibility ahead of time by clicking on the following link and installing necessary plug-ins to make sure you can connect during the webinar: https://edc.adobeconnect.com/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm


Stakeholder Health Q&A

The following article first appeared on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s blog, New Public Health: http://www.rwjf.org/en/blogs/new-public-health/2013/11/stakeholder_health.html.


Stakeholder Health, formerly known as the Health Services Learning Group, is a learning collaborative made up of 43 organizations, including 36 nonprofit health systems, that have met for close to two years to share innovative practices aimed at improving health and economic viability of communities.

The idea for the learning collaborative came from a series of meetings at the White House Office and U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Centers for Faith-Based & Neighborhood Partnerships. The Stakeholder Health administrative team is based at Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare Center for Excellence in Faith and Health in Memphis, Tenn., and at Wake Forest Baptist Health System in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation provided a grant to share the group’s findings and lessons learned.

Earlier this year, Stakeholder Health released a monograph to help identify proven community health practices and partnerships Kimberlydawn Wisdom, MD, MS, Senior Vice President of Community Health & Equity and Chief Wellness Officer at the Henry Ford Health System was a key contributor to the monograph.

NewPublicHealth recently spoke to Wisdom about Stakeholder Health’s objectives, goals and emerging successes, which she also presented on at the American Public Health Association’s annual meeting in Boston.

NewPublicHealth: What are examples of implementation of the Stakeholder Health recommendations at the Henry Ford Health System?

Kimberlydawn Wisdom: There are several. Stakeholder Health talks quite a bit about transformative partnerships and the importance of those transformative partnerships. And we have some stellar examples here in southeast Michigan of transformative partnerships, and one that I’d like to point to in particular is an effort we established called Sew Up the Safety Net, which addresses decreasing the infant mortality rate in our region, which is appallingly high.

We’ve developed a partnership with three other competing health systems within the Detroit region. So while on one level we are very strong competitors, on another level, we’ve actually joined our strategies and resources together in order to address the infant mortality challenge that we have in our communities. We also have private partners and public partners that are involved with us at various levels, but I think having that unprecedented partnership with competing health systems and getting real work done is something that we’re very proud of and work very hard to maintain.

Another example is our healthcare equity campaign to help us move from health disparities to healthcare equity. One of the key chapters in the monograph we produced last summer talks about the quadruple aim of addressing better care, better health, lower cost and healthcare equity.

A third example the monograph talks about is taking unmanaged charity care and moving it more toward improved health outcomes on such issues as childhood obesity, nutrition and physical activity, among others. We have grant funding, as well as system funding, to help us address improving health outcomes overall in our community and addressing complex situations and complex patients in complex neighborhoods and settings.

NPH: What transformations have taken place at Henry Ford that have improved your ability to help change population health in your community?

Wisdom: It starts off with a major commitment to community. Not just paying lip service or doing it simply to maintain 501C3 tax exempt nonprofit status, but to do it because it’s truly part of your mission and the vision of the organization.

At Henry Ford we spent about nine months developing our new vision by conducting focus groups with patients, with employees, with community members, with board members, and we ultimately voted on a vision statement that says we will be transforming lives and communities through health and wellness one person at a time. So it’s in our organizational structure, it’s in our vision statement and it’s in our reporting structure.

I think part of our ability to be transformational is that we have applied for and received a good number of grants which we are using to help us pilot newer and more innovative ways of doing things. And then we work very hard to incorporate that into how we conduct business from thereafter.

NPH: What partnership strategies are critical in helping to reduce unnecessary hospitalizations and improve community health?

Wisdom: I think a key strategy is to value the diverse partners that we have. We have partners that include federally qualified health centers, faith-based organizations, public health organizations, health systems, neighborhood service organizations, coalitions and health councils. Other key strategies include understanding our partners well and also linking partners to really create kind of a safety net of services. And I think those strategies have not only helped with unnecessary hospitalizations, but also help with improving health and wellbeing across the board by taking that safety net approach.

We’ve also introduced our partners to new types of workforce structures, and one I would mention is incorporating community health workers as a key part of the workforce. We have introduced that concept to various organizations and they’ve embraced it and taken that on. So I think another important strategy is to introduce partners to newer ways and more innovative ways of doing things and then having them embrace it. I think that is certainly a real win across the board for the organizations, as well as for the community.


New Online Toolkit on Preventing Teen Dating Violence

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has released a new, online toolkit on preventing teen dating violence in collaboration with Blue Shield of California Foundation and Futures Without Violence.

The free online tool kit provides resources and tips from Start Strong: Building Healthy Teen Relationships – the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s national program working to prevent teen dating violence and promote healthy relationships among middle-school-aged youth – on successful healthy relationships programming, such as:

  • Strategies for using popular culture to engage youth
  • How to leverage social media in healthy relationship education
  • Creative ways to engage parents and other youth influencers
  • Information about why middle school matters for preventing teen dating violence.

Users can walk through insights, prevention strategies, advice, and inspiring experiences from the Start Strong sites that can be utilized by educators, health professionals, violence prevention practitioners, community leaders, and anyone who works with youth, to promote healthy relationships among middle schoolers.

A recent evaluation of Start Strong  showed that the program had a positive impact on middle school students. Start Strong students reported decreased acceptance of teen dating violence and more positive attitudes toward gender equality—two key factors linked to stopping teen dating violence before it starts. Middle school is a critical time and this toolkit can be a resource for building healthy relationships and preventing teen dating violence in communities nationwide.


Visión y Compromiso’s Promotores and Community Health Worker Conference

On December 6th and 7th, 2013, Visión y Compromiso will host the 11th annual statewide Promotores and Community Health Worker conference, “Cultivating Our Strengths Towards A Dignified and Healthy Life.” The conference will take place at the Marriott Hotel & Convention Center at the Los Angeles Airport.

The conference provides the opportunity to:

  • Increase your knowledge and skills on health, life and community issues.
  • Reinvigorate your commitment to advocacy through workshops led by inspirational community leaders.
  • Share and network with other Promotores/as from across the country.

For more information and to register for the conference, go to http://www.visionycompromiso.org/wordpress/events/2013-conference/

Questions? Contact Mari Lopez at mari@visionycompromiso.org or (213) 926-1629 or visit www.visionycompromiso.org.


New Assets for Independence Application Webinars Scheduled

The Assets for Independence (AFI) Resource Center has released the schedule for a series of technical assistance webinars to help prospective grantees prepare for the 2014 application cycles. These webinars will cover the basics of planning, applying, and developing resources for an AFI project.

Go to the AFI Resource Center calendar here, or click on the dates below to register for a webinar!
 

Prospective Grantee Webinar 1: Planning an AFI Project

This webinar introduces asset building, Individual Development Accounts (IDAs), and the Assets for Independence program. It explains how an agency can assess its capacity to operate an AFI project, and reviews considerations for designing a successful project, including target population, allowable uses of funds, match rates, and network projects.
 

Prospective Grantee Webinar 2: Preparing a Successful Application

The purpose of this webinar is to walk attendees through the AFI funding announcement and the grant application process. It is expected that attendees will have attended “Prospective Grantee Webinar 1: Planning an AFI Project” and have a basic understanding of AFI and IDAs.
 

Prospective Grantee Webinar 3: Developing Resources and Partners

This webinar will introduce sources and strategies for developing resources - especially non-federal matching funds - and partnerships that can reduce the cost of implementing a project.
 

Want to discuss your project with a TA provider? 

Applicants can speak with a technical assistance provider any time before or after these webinars by contacting the AFI Resource Center at 866-778-6037 or info@idaresources.org.


 

Upcoming Events


Interactive Webinars on the Health Care Law

The HHS Partnership Center continues to host a series of webinars for faith and community leaders. All webinars are open to the public and include a question and answer session.

To participate in one of the webinars, please select your preferred topic from the list below and submit the necessary information. Please click on the title of the webinar and fill out the registration form. After registering you will receive an e-mail confirmation containing information about joining the webinar. Please contact us at ACA101@hhs.gov  if you have problems registering or if you have any questions about the health care law. All webinars are one hour.

Please note that the first 1,000 people who join each webinar at the start time are able to attend. If there is significant interest in a webinar, we will do our best to schedule another session for the following month. If possible, please use your computer speakers to listen to the audio portion of the webinar.

 

National Webinars

Monday, November 25 at 4:00 pm ET

Affordable Care Act 101 – The Health Insurance Marketplace

A presentation on the main provisions of the Affordable Care Act, the health care law. Information on the Health Insurance Marketplace, how to enroll in health insurance and key websites with resources on the law will be shared. We will end with a question and answer session. Please send any questions to ACA101@hhs.gov prior to November 25 at noon ET.

 

Let’s Move Faith and Communities We Can! webinar: “Media-Smart Youth”

Thursday, November 21, 1-3pm ET

Join Let’s Move Faith and Communities for a webinar training that will equip community health leaders to run Media-Smart Youth®: Eat, Think and Be Active! Media-Smart Youth is part of We Can!, a science-based national education program from the National Institutes of Health that provides parents, caregivers and communities with tools and strategies to help families improve food choices, increase physical activity and reduce screen time.

Media-Smart Youth is an after-school program designed to help young people ages 11 to 13 understand the connections between media and health and to help youth build media analysis and production skills.  The program uses nutrition and physical activity examples to help youth think critically about how media influences the choices they make.


Empowering America's Grassroots

Grant Opportunities

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Grants Forecast is a database of planned grant opportunities proposed by its agencies. Each Forecast record contains actual or estimated dates and funding levels for grants that the agency intends to award during the fiscal year. Forecast opportunities are subject to change based on enactment of congressional appropriations.

When funding is available and an agency is ready to accept applications, the agency will issue an official notice, known as a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), which will be available on how to apply. 


As always, the final section of our newsletter includes an updated grants listing that faith-based and community non-profits can pursue. All of these grant programs are competitive. It is important to review the funding announcement thoroughly to ensure that the grant opportunity is one that is appropriate to your organization’s mission, size, and scope.

 

Grant Listings

Title: STD/HIV Disease Intervention Services Training Centers (DISTC)

Description: The purpose of this FOA is to provide necessary training to strengthen the skills and capacity of Disease Intervention Specialist (DIS) and other partner services provider staff working in or with state/local health department STD/HIV prevention programs to deliver efficient and effective STD/HIV PS and other disease intervention activities.

Link to Full Announcement: Link to Full Announcement

Last day to Apply: November 21, 2013 (Letter of Intent Deadline; LOI is requested but optional); January 6, 2014 (Application Deadline)

Grant administered by the: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

 

Title: Public Education Efforts to Increase Solid Organ Donation

Description: This announcement solicits applications for the Public Education Efforts to Increase Solid Organ Donation Program. The mission of this grant program is to educate the public about the need for solid organ donation and to encourage positive deceased donation decisions, documentation, and family discussions.

Link to Full Announcement: Link to Full Announcement

Last day to Apply: December 3, 2013

Grant administered by the: Health Resources and Services Administration

 

Title: Academic-Community Partnership Conference Series

Description: The purpose of this grant opportunity is to bring together academic institutions/organizations and community organizations to identify opportunities for addressing health disparities through the use of Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR). The objectives of meetings conducted as part of this award will be to: (1) establish and/or enhance academic-community partnerships; (2) identify community-driven research priorities, and (3) develop long-term collaborative CBPR research agendas.

Eligibility: Non-profit organizations with or without 501(c)(3) status are encouraged to apply. The opportunity is also available to various governmental entities, local organizations, for-profit groups and small businesses.

Link to Full Announcement: Link to Full Announcement

Last Day to Apply: October 17, 2014

Grant is administered by the: National Institutes of Health

 

Grant Announcements

HHS awards Affordable Care Act funds to expand access to care

Funding supports new primary care sites in 236 communities to serve more than 1.25 million additional patients.

On November 7th, U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $150 million in awards under the Affordable Care Act to support 236 new health center sites across the country. These investments will help care for approximately 1.25 million additional patients.

Community health centers work to improve access to comprehensive, culturally competent, quality primary health care services.  Community health centers play an especially important role in delivering health care services in communities with historically high uninsurance rates.  Community health centers are also on the front line of helping uninsured residents enroll in new health insurance options available in the Health Insurance Marketplaces under the Affordable Care Act, through expanded access to Medicaid in many states, and new private health insurance options and tax credits.

Health Center New Access Point grants are listed by organization and state.

 

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announces new funding opportunities to support the primary care workforce

Funds will support resident training and state primary care efforts

To help expand and support the nation’s supply of primary care practitioners, on October 31st HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced the availability of funds for two programs that receive funding under the Affordable Care Act.

The Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, created by the Affordable Care Act,  increases primary care medical and dental residency training in health centers and other settings by funding residents’ medical education expenses. The program seeks to increase the primary care workforce as well as improve its distribution into communities that need them most, as there is good evidence that providers who receive training in community and underserved settings tend to practice in these settings. Community-based ambulatory care centers that operate an accredited primary care residency program are eligible to become Teaching Health Centers. The Affordable Care Act made $230 million available for this program over five years.

“The Teaching Health Center  program currently supports more than 300 residents for academic year 2013-2014,” said Secretary Sebelius. “This new funding opportunity will build on its progress and help support additional residents to increase our nation’s supply of essential primary care providers.”

The Primary Care Services Resource Coordination and Development Program supports State Primary Care Offices to coordinate activities related to the delivery of primary care services and recruitment and retention of critical health care providers. Approximately $11 million – $2 million of which is provided by the Affordable Care Act – will support these State efforts.

“The Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA’s) partnerships with states are instrumental to increasing access to high quality health care,” said Mary K. Wakefield, Ph.D., R.N., administrator of HRSA, which oversees both programs. “Together, we are working to support primary care providers in the communities where they are needed the most.”

For application information for both funding opportunities, visit Grants.gov.  
To learn more about the Affordable Care Act, go to Healthcare.gov.

 

ACF awards $12.6 million to help hard-working families save money

Matched savings program creates path to financial independence

Americans working to achieve financial security will get much-needed assistance through Assets for Independence (AFI), a program funded by HHS’ Administration for Children and Families’ Office of Community Services.

ACF will award 45 grants totaling $12.6 million to community-based organizations that have designed programs to complement the efforts of individuals and families who have taken the initiative to save money.

 “These organizations found innovative approaches to help families trying to work their way into the middle class,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for the Administration for Children and Families Mark Greenberg. “Assets for Independence grantees demonstrate that the American dream — owning a home, continuing one’s education or starting a small business — can still be a reality for some of our nation’s hardest-working individuals and families.”

AFI grants use existing individual and community assets to give individuals access to savings accounts called Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). Each dollar deposited into an IDA receives a match of $1 to $8 from federal and private sector resources. Individuals in the program also receive financial education to help in their path to become financially self-sufficient.

Visit the AFI website to get more information on the AFI program or to see the current list of grantees.