In this Issue
From the CEO's Desk
Nationally, the health care debate continues. There are some things that we can all agree on, though.
The Interfaith Dental Clinic has been chosen as a 2010 recipient of the Bank of America Neighborhood Builders Award! This $200,000 grant is given to only two organizations in the Nashville area. They are looking forward to partnering with Bank of America in providing their neighbors with improved oral health and overall well being.
From Smith Harris & Carr
Click here to read our lobbying firm's recap of the midterm election results for both the federal and state governments.
Knoxville-based Cherokee Health Systems was recently awarded a three-year grant by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) through its Graduate Psychology Education Program: Workforce Training to Improve Access to Mental Health Services. The program is designed to foster an integrated approach to health care services, address access for populations in need, and evaluate program outcomes. Cherokee Health Systems will use the funds to support its graduate psychology training efforts in which graduate students in psychology are trained under Cherokee’s integrated primary care behavioral health model.
"With this funding, Cherokee is building a workforce of psychologists who are trained to practice in primary care, with a particular focus on underserved populations,” said Parinda Khatri, Ph.D., Cherokee’s Director of Integrated Care. “It is vital that students learn this model in order to better understand their patients and the complexity of their physical and psychological needs so that they can work in concert with other practitioners to help the patient reach a better outcome.”
For more information about Cherokee, visit www.cherokeehealth.com.
Welcome to the new TPCA Connections
We've made some changes to our communications to better serve our members. This e-newsletter will bring you a bi-monthly update on Tennessee's community health centers, the Association, and changes in the community health landscape. We hope you enjoy!
Kathy Wood-Dobbins, CEO
Recently, participants from Rural Health Services Consortiuum, CHOTA, United Neighborhood Health Services, ETSU, & Cherokee Health Systems shared best practices and discussed common challenges for school-based health centers. A common success is that schools with a health center see improvement in attendance since students can quickly get their health care needs met on-site and go back to class. School-based health centers are also great for prevention & early treatment of illnesses so one sick child does not become several more. Many of these centers are also a great resource for teachers & parents.
Rural Health Services Consortiuum is using a mobile unit in order to serve multiple schools in their area. Cherokee Health Systems is working in partnership with Sevier County schools to implement school-based health centers through telemedicine, which allows clinicians to see several children at different schools from their clinic via high speed connection and monitors.
Some of the challenges discussed include questions related to provider credentialing, charges and billing, physical space in or near the building, the lack of an external door to the school-based health center that is separate from the school entrance, children’s oral health needs, children’s nutrition counseling needs, and the children’s behavioral health needs.
There was a policy update from the National Assembly on School-Based Health Care and learned more about the national agenda which includes provisions of health reform related to school-based health centers, the need for better reimbursement, and the role of school-based health centers in education reform. The meeting concluded with information about the application process for a new school-based health center capital grant.
You can contact Christi Granstaff in the TPCA office for more information about school-based health centers.
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced awards of $727 million to 143 community health centers across the country to address pressing construction and renovation needs and expand access to quality health care. The funds are the first in a series of awards that will be made available to community health centers under the Affordable Care Act.
In Tennessee, five community health centers will recieve funding.
Click here to read the press release.
Dayspring Family Health Center recognized September as Infant Mortality Awareness Month. Campbell County Mayor William Baird presented the Center with a proclamation during a ceremony at their Indian Mountain Clinic in Jellico, TN. Being located in a rural area, the center has successfully delivered hundreds of healthy babies for families in the community.
The month of October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center held several awareness events and promotions. They provided mammograms and screenings, held an educational "lunch and learn" for women in the community, and held a women's only health fair.
TPCA has developed a series of seven videos about Health Centers and what it is like to work for one. Feel free to use them for trainings, orientations, recruitment, and other opportunities.
This month we are highlighting the video "Provider Recruitment Incentive Programs." This video explains the prgrams we have here at the Association to help health centers recruit providers like doctors, nurse practitioners, dentists and behavioral health specialists.
Mary Bufwack, CEO of United Neighborhood Health Services, has been elected to the Board of Directors of the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC). Bufwack will serve a 2-year term on the Board as Region IV Representative representing community health care centers in the southeastern United States.
“This is a critical time for community health centers,” said Bufwack, who has served as CEO of United Neighborhood Health Services since 1988. “With health reform, the Board’s major responsibility is to help centers expand to meet the needs of their communities.”
The Murfreesboro based clinic received their Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Look-Alike status recently. This is the next step in becoming an FQHC.
An FQHC Look-Alike clinic meets all of the Section 330 program requirements, but does not receive grant support. The benefits of FQHC Look-Alike status include: enhanced revenue due to the Prospective Payment System (PPS) reimbursement for services to Medicaid and Medicare patients, access to on-site Department of Health and Human Services outstationed eligibility workers to provide Medicaid and CHIP enrollment services, and access to National Health Service Corps (NHSC) placements to provide medical, dental, and mental health provider staff.
In a recent ceremony, the Nashville Business Journal awarded their 2010 Health Care Heroes for their passion to meet the health care needs of the Nashville area. Vanderbilt University School of Nursing's Bonnie Pilon, United Neighborhood Health Services' Dr. Keith Junior, and Matthew Walker Comprehensive Health Center's Jeff McKissack were all TPCA members who were recognized.