Thursday, October 14, 2010

Health Reform Update 10/14/10

School-based Health Center Funding Opportunity

US HHS Secretary Sebelius has designated $100 million in new investments from the Affordable Care Act for school-based health centers (SBHCs). The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) expects to award an estimated 200 grants in FY2011 to construct, renovate, or purchase equipment in SBHCs. An eligible applicant must be a school-based health center or sponsoring facility, and should certify that the SBHC site(s) serves children eligible for medical assistance under the state Medicaid plan. The application deadline is December 1.

Recent Health Reform Grants in Maine

· Maine DHHS, Husson College, and the University of New England were awarded a total of $822,796 from the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to purchase equipment for training current and future health professionals across disciplines at the undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate education levels.

· Maine was one of 20 states funded to strengthen Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs) Options Counseling and Assistance Programs for community-based health and long-term care services. Options counseling programs help people understand, evaluate, and manage the full range of services and supports available in their community.

· Maine was one of 16 states funded to coordinate and continue to encourage evidence-based care transition models which help older persons or persons with disabilities remain in their own homes after a hospital, rehabilitation or skilled nursing facility stay. These grants will help break the cycle of readmission to the hospital that occurs when an individual is discharged into the community without the social services and supports they need.

· The University of New England in Biddeford was awarded $990,000 to fund its primary care physician assistant training program by providing student stipends.

· Maine DHHS was awarded $747,632 to develop and evaluate a competency-based uniform curriculum to train qualified personal and home care aides. Personal and home care aides (PHCAs) are projected to be the fourth-fastest growing direct care occupation in the United States between 2008 and 2018. Maine is one of six states participating in the 3-year project.

· The Maine Jobs Council was awarded a $150,000 planning grant to assess the state’s current health workforce. These activities are expected to result in a 10 to 25 percent increase in the primary care health workforce over a 10-year period.

· Maine CDC was awarded $250,000 for a personal responsibility education program as part of $155 million in national teen pregnancy prevention grants.

· US HHS awarded nearly $49 million to help plan for the establishment of health insurance exchanges, a key part of the Affordable Care Act set to begin in 2014. In Maine, the Governor’s Office of Health Policy and Finance was awarded $1 million to support the development and implementation plan for the Exchange.

· US HHS awarded $727 million in Affordable Care Act funds to 143 community health centers to address pressing construction and renovation needs and expand access to quality health care. The following table shows the 19 Maine health centers that received a total of almost $20 million:

Health Center Grantee Name

City

Total Award

Bucksport Regional HC

Bucksport

$3,394,076

City of Portland Maine

Portland

$1,747,510

DFD Russell Medical Center

Leeds

$670,557

Eastport Health Care, Inc.

Eastport

$586,626

Fish River Rural Health

Eagle Lake

$491,222

Harrington Family HC

Harrington

$501,579

Health Access Network, Inc.

Lincoln

$903,820

Healthreach Community HC

Waterville

$1,687,496

Islands Community Medical Services, Inc

Vinalhaven

$408,654

Katahdin Valley HC

Patten

$678,154

Maine Migrant Programs, Inc.

Augusta

$407,295

Maine Primary Care Association

Augusta

$446,250

Penobscot Community HC, Inc.

Bangor

$3,741,093

Pines Health Services

Caribou

$829,605

Regional Medical Center at Lubec, Inc.

Lubec

$549,613

Sacopee Valley HC

Porter

$1,341,309

Sebasticook Family Doctors

Pittsfield

$585,950

St. Croix Regional Family HC

Princeton

$488,368

York County Community Action Corporation

Sanford

$455,900

Other Health Reform News

People who retire early often have a difficult time finding affordable coverage, and are too young to be eligible for Medicare. But today, more early retirees can rest easier knowing that their health security won’t be compromised by their early retirement after today’s announcement that more employers and unions will participate in HHS’s Early Retiree Reinsurance Program. For more information: http://www.healthcare.gov/news/blog/ERRPLetters.html

This HealthCare.gov web site lets you search your insurance options: http://finder.healthcare.gov/

For more information about Health Reform in Maine, visit the Governor’s Office of Health Policy and Finance’s web site: http://www.maine.gov/healthreform/

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