Diabetes Awareness Month, National Rural Health Day, Million Hearts Hypertension Control Champions, and More! HRSA PHC Digest

HRSA BPHC Primary Health Care Digest

November 13, 2018

It’s Diabetes Awareness Month
November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and tomorrow, November 14, is World Diabetes Day. Did you know:

  • 1 in 7 health center patients has a diabetes diagnosis (2017 UDS). The U.S. average is 1 in 10 (National Committee on Quality and Assurance).

  • 33% of diabetic patients at health centers have uncontrolled diabetes. The U.S. average is 43%.

Even though health centers exceeded national benchmarks, nearly a third of our patients with diabetes are not achieving control. Looking at trend data over the last several years, the Health Center Program has not moved the needle on diabetes control. There continue to be disparities across race and ethnicities, and unique challenges serving our special populations. We are focused on working with health centers to improve these measures to exceed our initiative goals and the Healthy People 2020 goals.

Health Center Program and Diabetes

Health Center Program Diabetes Webpage to Launch
Tomorrow, November 14, the Health Center Program will launch its Diabetes Quality Improvement Initiative webpage, which includes diabetes data, information about the initiative, and its goals, resources, and promising practices. Visit the Health Center Program website tomorrow and watch your inbox for a special edition Digest tomorrow.

National Rural Health Day

National Rural Health Day
This Thursday, November 15, HRSA’s Federal Office of Rural Health Policy will join the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health to celebrate National Rural Health Day.

Events throughout the week, open to the public and viewable online, will showcase collaboration for rural health across HRSA’s bureaus and offices as well as other departments within HHS. View the National Rural Health Day agenda.

HRSA is hosting a Rural Health Day Twitter chat on the role of telehealth. Follow us on Twitter and join the conversation on Thursday, November 15, from 2:00-3:00 p.m. ET. Throughout the chat, we will discuss how the use of telehealth can improve health care and accessibility in rural areas across the nation. Join us by using the hashtag #TalkTelehealth.

What's New

Health Information Technology

New Resources for the Fiscal Year 2019 Health Center Controlled Networks Funding Opportunity
The fiscal year (FY) 2019 Health Center Controlled Networks (HCCN) (HRSA-19-011) notice of funding opportunity (NOFO) makes $42 million available to HCCNs to support health centers’ participation in value-based care by leveraging health information technology.

Visit the HCCN technical assistance (TA) webpage for newly posted resources, including Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), the Goals and Objectives Development Guide, and the TA webinar slides. We will post the recording of the TA webinar soon.

Applications are due in Grants.gov by 11:59 p.m. ET on Thursday, January 3, 2019, and in HRSA’s Electronic Handbooks (EHBs) by 5:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 29, 2019.

Health Centers Recognized as Million Hearts Hypertension Control Champions
The Million Hearts® Initiative and CDC recognized five HRSA-funded health centers (out of 18 total organizations) as 2018 Hypertension Control Champions for their success in achieving blood pressure control rates for at least 80% of their adult patients with hypertension through innovative approaches.

Visit the Million Hearts® website to find a map of all of the Champions, read previous Champion’s success stories, and find evidence-based tools and resources to share with your colleagues and partners to improve blood pressure control. If you missed it, check out the recent Vital Signs report on preventing 1 million heart attacks and strokes.

Uniform Data System Preliminary Reporting Environment Now Available
As part of efforts to modernize our Uniform Data System (UDS), HRSA announces new functionality in EHBs allowing health centers earlier access to the UDS reporting environment. You can access the Preliminary Reporting Environment (PRE) via the reporting portal to enter and validate any available/partial data for the 2018 UDS reporting period before the “official” reporting window opens on January 1, 2019. There are two new options for entering 2018 UDS data outside of EHBs: an offline Excel tool and an offline HTML tool. Learn more by watching this video.

The PRE and new UDS reporting tools are optional. Health centers may still choose to begin entering their 2018 UDS data on January 1, 2019, during the traditional UDS reporting period via EHBs.

National Advisory Council on Migrant Health Biannual Meeting
The National Advisory Council on Migrant Health’s (NACMH) biannual meeting will take place November 14-15 in Bethesda, MD. The NACMH consults with and makes recommendations to the HHS Secretary concerning the organization, operation, selection and funding of migrant health centers under section 330 of the Public Health Service Act. The meeting is open to the public. The agenda for the NACMH meeting is available from Esther Paul, Designated Federal Officer, NACMH. Additional information on the meeting is available in this Federal Register Notice.

HRSA Health Center Facility Loan Guarantee Program
The HRSA Health Center Facility Loan Guarantee Program (LGP) supports loans to eligible, active Health Center Program awardees for the construction/expansion, alteration/renovation, and modernization of health center medical facilities.

The LGP’s purposes is to facilitate access to capital funding and reduce financing costs for health centers by guaranteeing up to 80 percent of financing needed to support capital infrastructure projects. While there is no limit on loan size, the program typically guarantees loans for projects of $5-7 million or more. After approving a loan guarantee, HRSA monitors the loan repayment status and assesses the operational/financial viability of the health center during the life of the loan.

We accept applications year-round. Interested health centers should visit the Health Center Facility Loan Guarantee Program website for additional information.

HUD Policy Brief on Housing Choice Vouchers: Understanding the Impact and Potential for Health Centers
The Corporation for Supportive Housing, a HRSA-funded National Cooperative Agreement (NCA), published a policy brief exploring the role that health centers can play in linking eligible individuals to sustainable, affordable housing and providing health care to participants in HUD’s Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program. Health centers are increasingly addressing the social determinants of health for their patient population through partnerships and linkages to local housing and service resources. The HCV program is a longstanding, critical resource that provides housing stability through rental assistance.

VA MISSION Act and the New Veterans Community Care Program
The VA MISSION Act of 2018 (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Maintaining Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks Act) consolidates VA’s community care programs, including VA Choice, into a new Veterans Community Care Program that will ensure veterans receive timely, appropriate care. The program allows veterans to receive qualifying services outside of the current VA system and from private health care providers, including health centers. Health centers interested in learning more about the new Veterans Community Care Program should read the fact sheet.

The VA hopes to transition to the new program in June 2019. Until then, Patient-Centered Community Care and the Veterans Choice Program will continue, with TriWest serving as the VA’s national program administrator.

Updating Your Accreditation and Patient-Centered Medical Home Recognition Information in EHBs
Need to update your health center’s accreditation or Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) recognition information? Submit updates from your EHBs Grant Folder by clicking the “HRSA Accreditation/PCMH Initiative” link and choosing either the “Request Accreditation Update” or “Request PCMH Recognition Update” button. We will review your updates and send an email confirmation once we have reviewed your request. Contact HRSA’s Accreditation and PCMH Initiative with questions.

Extended Deadline for Stakeholder Survey
We extended the deadline for grantees, look-alikes, and our cooperative agreement partners to complete the 2018 HRSA BPHC Stakeholder Satisfaction Survey. Project directors now have through Tuesday, November 20, to complete the survey. Please take just 15 minutes to help inform BPHC about how we can better serve your organization.

If you are a Project Director that did not receive a survey link, email BPHCreviews@hrsa.gov. Be sure to check your spam folder!

2019 National Health Service Corps Students to Service Loan Repayment Program
The 2019 National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Students to Service (S2S) Loan Repayment Program (LRP) application cycle is open. The program awards up to $120,000 to medical and dental students in their final year of school in exchange for a three-year commitment to provide primary care services at NHSC-approved sites in high-need areas. Review the 2019 Application and Program Guidance for information on how to apply. The NHSC S2S LRP application cycle closes on Thursday, December 20, at 7:30 p.m. ET.

NHSC Apply Now

Funding Opportunity: FY 2019 Advanced Nursing Education Workforce (ANEW)
Program Grantees and look-alikes, in partnership with schools of nursing, may be eligible to apply for the FY 2019 Advanced Nursing Education Workforce (ANEW) Program. ANEW supports innovative academic-practice to educate primary care nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, and nurse midwives to prepare for the unique challenges of practicing in rural and underserved communities. For more information about eligibility and the application process, visit Grants.gov.


Free Continuing Education on Flu Vaccine from the CDC and Medscape
The CDC and Medscape are hosting a free continuing education (CE) credit activity that updates clinicians on the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices influenza vaccination recommendations for the 2018-2019 season. This activity is intended for health care personnel involved in influenza vaccination. The training activity is available from Medscape (free registration is required).

CDC and Medscape Flu Vaccine

Smoke-Free Public Housing Webinar
Join a HRSA webinar to learn how "Change is in the Air" for public housing units across the country as HUD's smoke-free policy went into effect on July 30. Public Housing Primary Care health centers (PHPCs) are in a unique position to collaborate with Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) to implement the smoking ban and address the health care needs of public housing residents. Join the National Center for Health in Public Housing, a HRSA-funded NCA, to learn how PHPCs and PHAs can work together to support policy implementation and improve health outcomes within their communities. This informative webinar will highlight innovations/promising practices from health centers in Alabama and New York and identify helpful resources for PHPCs.

Tuesday, December 11
12:30-2:00 p.m. ET
Join the webinar the day of the session
Call-in: 800-593-9913
Passcode: 9283710

Primary Care Association and HCCN Workforce Professional Development Series
The Association of Clinicians for the Underserved is a HRSA-funded NCA. Their STAR2 Center team invites workforce staff from Primary Care Associations (PCA) and HCCN teams to participate in a monthly professional development series where faculty and guest speakers will bring expertise in all things workforce to share insight from the national, regional, and state levels with the learning cohort. This series is intended to bolster workforce efforts internally at PCAs and HCCNs, and to help those teams to provide a robust support system for recruitment and retention at their health centers.

Register here for the five remaining sessions in this six-part series. All sessions occur from 3:00-4:00 p.m. ET on the first Thursday of each month through April:

  • Developing a Workforce Training Plan for Health Centers
  • Developing a State Recruitment Plan
  • NCAs – Who Are They, What Resources Do They Have
  • HPSAs, NHSC, and Federal Resources
  • Understanding HR Metrics

Learning Collaboratives Target Care for Adolescents and Children
School-Based Health Alliance, a HRSA-funded NCA, invites health centers to join these learning collaboratives, which aim to improve care for young patients.

  • Addressing Diabetes Risk Factors in Elementary School Children through Community Partnerships
    Is your health center interested in enhancing efforts to prevent, screen for, and manage pre-diabetic indicators among elementary school-aged children through school partnerships? By the end of this learning collaborative, each health center will select one or more elementary schools and develop an action plan for addressing elementary-aged children’s obesity and other pre-diabetic indicators. These action plans will include goals, specific school partners, evidence-based strategies and programs, deliverables, timelines, and responsible parties. This learning collaborative convenes in February and concludes in April. Applications are due by Friday, November 30.

  • Adolescent Health TeleECHO Clinic™
    Explore topics relating to adolescent-friendly environments including parent/community engagement, risk behavior counseling, self-harm and suicidal ideation, and transgender transition care. Sessions kick off in January and conclude in May. Receive 1.5 CEUs per session at no cost. Applications are due by Friday, November 16.

Oral Health and Aging Resources
HRSA, NIH, and other federal partners have developed a new series of fact sheets, Oral Health and Aging: Information for Caregivers, to teach caregivers about oral health and how to provide care. The fact sheets—Brushing, Flossing, Dry Mouth, and Finding Low-Cost Dental Care—are for family members, direct care workers such as home health aides, and managers/administrators of programs that assist older adults.

Overview of SBIRT Training Opportunities and Resources Webinar Recording Available
Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is an approach to the delivery of early intervention and treatment to people with substance use disorders and those at risk of developing these disorders. Watch a webinar recording of experts from SAMHSA’s Addiction Technology Transfer Center (a nationwide, multidisciplinary resource for professionals in the addictions treatment and recovery services field) discussing online and regional SBIRT training opportunities for health centers and their primary care teams.

Implementation Resource: CDC Quality Improvement and Care Coordination: Implementing the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain
Has your practice or health care system implemented the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain? If not, CDC developed a resource that may help you get started: Quality Improvement and Care Coordination: Implementing the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.

Advancing Oral and Primary Health Care Integration to Support Diabetes Prevention and Management Webinar
HRSA will host a webinar that focuses on the relationship and importance between oral health care and diabetes prevention and management in health center settings. Presenters will highlight HRSA and CDC initiatives, health center models, partnerships, and resources that support integrated oral health and diabetes care.

Thursday, November 29
1:00-2:00 p.m. ET
Register here

In case you missed it:
Visit the Primary Health Care Digest archive.

Do you forward the Digest to others?
Encourage them to subscribe.

Technical Assistance & Training


Visit the training calendar to learn details about or register for events.


Referring Adolescent Patients to Dental Services
Hosted by the School-Based Health Alliance, a HRSA-funded NCA
Thursday, November 15
1:00-2:00 p.m. ET
Register here

Auto-HPSA Update Preview Webinar
Hosted by HRSA
Thursday, November 15
4:00-5:30 p.m. ET
Join the webinar the day of the session
Call-in: 888-982-4613
Passcode: 8684082

Homelessness, Health, and Medical-Legal Partnerships
Hosted by the National Health Care for the Homeless Council (NHCHC), a HRSA-funded NCA
Monday, November 19
1:45-2:45 p.m. ET
Register here


Oral Health and Diabetes for Patients Experiencing Homelessness
Hosted by the National Network for Oral Health Access (NNOHA) and NHCHC, both HRSA-funded NCAs
Tuesday, November 27
1:00-2:00 p.m. ET
Register here
1.0 Continuing Dental Education (CDE) credit is available

BPHC All-Programs Webcast
Tuesday, November 27
2:30-3:30 p.m. ET
Webcast information coming soon.
To submit questions in advance, send an email to bphcta@hrsa.gov by Wednesday, November 21, with the subject line "BPHC All-Programs Question."

Advancing Oral and Primary Health Care Integration to Support Diabetes Prevention and Management Webinar
Hosted by HRSA
Thursday, November 29
1:00-2:00 p.m. ET
Register here

Smoke-Free Public Housing Webinar
Hosted by HRSA
Tuesday, December 11
12:30-2:00 p.m. ET
Join the webinar the day of the session
Call-in: 800-593-9913
Passcode: 9283710

PCA and HCCN Workforce Professional Development Series
Hosted by The Association of Clinicians for the Underserved’s STAR2 Center, a HRSA-funded NCA
Register here for the series

Developing a Workforce Training Plan for Health Centers
Thursday, December 6
3:00-4:00 p.m. ET

Developing a State Recruitment Plan
Thursday, January 3, 2019
3:00-4:00 p.m. ET

NCAs – Who Are They, What Resources Do They Have
Thursday, February 7, 2019
3:00-4:00 p.m. ET

HPSAs, NHSC, and Federal Resources
Thursday, March 7, 2019
3:00-4:00 p.m. ET

Understanding HR Metrics
Thursday, April 4, 2019
3:00-4:00 p.m. ET