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RHIhub This Week - December 30, 2020

New in the Rural Monitor

Rural Monitor Top 10 of 2020 Top 10 Rural Monitor Articles of 2020
Articles on COVID-19 concerns, health workforce, dementia, human trafficking, and more made it onto the year's most-read list.

 New in Our Online Library
 Information from around the web

Recent News

Experts Say It's a Herculean Effort for Rural Hospitals to Roll Out Mass Vaccination
Dec 29, 2020 -- Explores the efforts of rural hospitals to distribute the COVID-19 vaccines to staff and their communities. Discusses the differences between the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, the obstacles to distribution, and small hospitals' strategies to overcome those obstacles.
Source: NPR

Neurologists Much Tougher to Find in Rural America
Dec 29, 2020 -- Summarizes a study that finds neurologists in the U.S. are not evenly spread out, creating a shortage in rural areas and making rural residents less likely to receive specialized care for conditions such as stroke, dementia, and back pain. Describes how telemedicine could extend neurological services to people in rural areas.
Source: Health Day

Shortage of Nurses Trained to Conduct Forensic Exams after Sexual Assault, Investigation Reveals
Dec 28, 2020 -- Video reports on the shortage of sexual assault nurse examiners (SANEs), who are trained in conducting forensic exams on survivors of sexual assaults. With no national database for SANES, the analysis looked at every state's resources and found the worst shortages in states with largely rural communities.
Source: NBC News

Why Getting COVID-19 Vaccines to Rural Americans Is Harder than It Looks, and How to Lift the Barriers
Dec 28, 2020 -- Discusses barriers to distributing the COVID-19 vaccines in rural areas, such as the vaccines' cold storage requirements and shipping rules which make it difficult for rural hospitals to serve as distribution hubs. Describes how geographic isolation, hospital closures, and lack of public transportation increases the difficulty of vaccinating rural Americans.
Source: The Conversation

Hard-Hit Rural Hospitals Healing after Harrowing Battles Against COVID-19
Dec 26, 2020 -- After experiencing one of the worst outbreaks in the country, active COVID-19 cases and virus-related hospitalizations have fallen in North Dakota. Describes how the pandemic's peak in November left healthcare workers at rural hospitals exhausted, but as vaccines start to roll out, healthcare workers feel a sense of hope.
Source: Grand Forks Herald

Rural Community Reflects Black American Unease, Challenges with COVID-19 Vaccines
Dec 24, 2020 -- Discusses Black Americans hesitancies to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and describes how increased transparency, inclusion, and clear public messaging will increase vaccine participation among communities of color. Addresses the barriers to vaccine distribution in rural communities, such as healthcare workforce shortages, lack of proper refrigeration, and geographic isolation.
Source: ABC News

Federal Register

Public Inspection: CMS: Medicare Program; Secure Electronic Prior Authorization For Medicare Part D
Dec 30, 2020 -- Pre-publication notice of final rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) adopting a new standard for the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit program's (Part D) e-prescribing program as required by the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment for Patients and Communities Act (SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act). This rule amends regulations to require Part D plan sponsors to support a National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP) SCRIPT standard for use in certain electronic prior authorization transactions. This rule is effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register, which is scheduled for December 31, 2020.
Source: Federal Register

HHS: Agency Information Collection Request; 30-Day Public Comment Request
Dec 29, 2020 -- The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is seeking comments on the HHS Teletracking COVID-19 Portal (U.S. Healthcare COVID-19 Portal). The data collected through daily reporting by hospitals informs the Federal Government's understanding of disease patterns and furthers the development of policies for COVID-19 prevention and control. Comments are due by January 28, 2021.
Source: Federal Register

HRSA: Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission to OMB for Review and Approval; Public Comment Request; Information Collection Request Title: DATA 2000 Waiver Training Payment Program Application for Payment, OMB No. 0906-xxxx-New
Dec 29, 2020 -- The Health Resources and Services Administration is seeking comments and burden estimates on an application Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) and Rural Health Clinics (RHC) must submit to receive payment for the average training costs of eligible physicians and practitioners who obtain Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 (DATA 2000) waivers to furnish opioid use disorder treatment services. Comments are due by January 28, 2021.
Source: Federal Register

Public Inspection: CMS: Medicaid Program: Establishing Minimum Standards in Medicaid State Drug Utilization Review and Supporting Value-Based Purchasing for Drugs Covered in Medicaid, Revising Medicaid Drug Rebate and Third Party Liability Requirements
Dec 28, 2020 -- Pre-publication notice of final rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding regulatory changes to support state flexibility to enter into value-based purchasing arrangements (VBPs) with manufacturers. This rule also implements provisions of the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act designed to reduce opioid-related fraud, misuse, and abuse through the Medicaid Drug Utilization Review (DUR) program. This rule is effective 60 days publication of this notice in the Federal Register, which is scheduled for December 31, 2020.
Source: Federal Register

Funding & Opportunities

Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic Expansion Grants
Funding for the expansion of Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics to increase access to and improve the quality of community behavioral health services, with an emphasis on services for individuals with serious mental illness or substance use disorders, including opioid disorders; children and adolescents with serious emotional disturbance; individuals with co-occurring disorders; and armed forces members and veterans in rural areas.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide
Application Deadline: Mar 1, 2021
Sponsors: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Tribal-Researcher Capacity Building Grants
Grants to support research involving federally recognized tribes and tribal-based organizations on issues of crime and justice, with research priorities including alcohol, opioids, and other substance abuse and violent crime.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide and U.S. Territories
Application Deadline: Mar 15, 2021
Sponsors: National Institute of Justice, U.S. Department of Justice

Community Health Access and Rural Transformation (CHART) Model
A voluntary payment model designed to meet the needs of rural communities. The CHART Model will test whether aligned financial incentives, increased operational flexibility, and robust technical support promote the capacity of rural healthcare providers to implement effective healthcare delivery system redesign on a broad scale.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide
Letter of Intent (Optional): Feb 17, 2021
Application Deadline: Mar 16, 2021 (extended)
Sponsors: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Surgical Disparities Research (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)
Grants to support investigative and collaborative research focused on understanding and addressing disparities in surgical care and outcomes in minority and health disparity populations.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide and U.S. Territories
Letter of Intent (Optional): May 5, 2021
Application Deadline: Jun 5, 2021
Sponsors: National Cancer Institute, National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Improving Quality of Care and Patient Outcomes During Care Transitions (R01)
Funding for health services research that will test promising interventions aimed at improving communication and coordination during care transitions.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide and U.S. territories
Application Deadline: Dec 6, 2022
Sponsors: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

American Indian Public Health Resource Center Technical Assistance
Technical assistance for tribes to improve health systems, access to services, and health outcomes in rural, impoverished communities.
Geographic coverage: Nationwide
Applications accepted on an ongoing basis
Sponsor: American Indian Public Health Resource Center

New Resources

"We're, Like, the Most Unhealthy People in the Country": Using an Equity Lens to Reduce Barriers to Healthy Food Access in Rural Appalachia
Examines barriers and facilitators for accessing healthy food in Martin County, Kentucky. Aims to develop socially-, culturally-, and historically-informed policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) interventions to reduce obesity in Appalachia and other areas.
Author(s): Kathryn Cardarelli, Emily DeWitt, Rachel Gillespie, et al.
Location: Preventing Chronic Disease, 17
Date: 12/2020

2019 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report
Provides a comprehensive summary and data analysis of healthcare quality and access in the U.S. Includes a discussion of disparities encountered by race/ethnicity and geographic locations along the rural-urban continuum. Addresses access to healthcare, patient safety, person-centered care, care coordination, affordability, healthy living, and effective treatment.
Sponsoring organization: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Date: 09/2020

Addressing Health Disparities in the Rural United States: Advocacy as Caregiving among Community Health Workers and Promotores de Salud
Presents a study comparing the roles played by community health workers (CHWs) and promotores de salud in serving rural communities in Indiana and Texas. Discusses CHWs role in addressing rural health disparities and describes that role in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Author(s): Ryan I. Logan, Heide Castañeda
Location: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(24), 9223
Date: 12/2020

Chronic Care Management - Understanding the Value & How it can Transform your Quality of Care
Webinar presented by a representative of the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network, identifying key components required to create a chronic care management (CCM) program in rural hospitals, listing quality measures and outcomes affected by the CCM process, and showing income opportunities CCM programs provide. Explains what data institutions should track in order to remain compliant with regulations, and shows ways that CMM programs can reduce negative patient outcomes. Transcript available by clicking the three dots above the Subscribe button.
Additional links: Slides
Sponsoring organizations: Association for Rural & Community Health Professional Coding, Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network
Date: 12/2020

County-Level Access to Potential COVID-19 Vaccine Administration Facilities
Interactive map showing county-level data on potential COVID-19 vaccine administration facilities per 10,000 people. Displays data on percent of general population and percent of population older than 65 who reside more than 10 miles away from a facility. Includes number of hospital outpatient departments, community pharmacies, Rural Health Clinics, and Federally Qualified Health Centers in each county.
Additional links: Access to Potential COVID-19 Vaccine Administration Facilities: A Geographic Information Systems Analysis
Sponsoring organization: West Health Policy Center
Date: 12/2020

COVID-19 Funding Sources Impacting Rural Providers
Reference guide to help rural healthcare providers navigate federal COVID-19 response and recovery funding. Includes tables identifying eligibility by provider type and how funds can be spent. Provides an overview of each funding opportunity and reporting requirements.
Sponsoring organization: National Rural Health Resource Center
Date: 12/2020

COVID-19 Vaccination Toolkits
A collection of audience-specific toolkits to help healthcare providers build confidence in COVID-19 vaccination among healthcare staff, educate patients, and properly store and handle the vaccine.
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Date: 12/2020

COVID-19: Toolkit for Healthcare Providers
Guidance and tools from the CDC to help clinicians make decisions, protect patients and employees, and communicate with their communities. Includes planning documents, frequently asked questions, vaccine resources, information to share with patients, and more.
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Date: 12/2020

COVID-19: Vaccines
Resources and information for the public on COVID-19 vaccination. Addresses frequently asked questions related to the vaccine and covers how the vaccine works, who will be vaccinated first, benefits of vaccination, information on the different vaccines, and more.
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Date: 12/2020

Farmworker Health Network: 2020 Key Resources for Agricultural Worker Health
Highlights several resources on agricultural worker health, including a toolkit to encourage ag worker participation on health center boards and model programs to address specific health conditions. Provides a summary for each resource and links to more information on each sponsoring program's website.
Sponsoring organizations: Farmworker Justice Fund, Inc., Health Outreach Partners, MHP Salud, Migrant Clinicians Network, National Association of Community Health Centers, National Center for Farmworker Health
Date: 2020

HCUP Summary Trend Tables
Provides a series of data files on monthly hospital utilization data derived from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) State Inpatient Databases (SID) and HCUP State Emergency Department Databases (SEDD) beginning in January 2017. Includes state-by-state data on hospitalizations due to COVID-19, influenza, and other respiratory conditions; normal newborns and deliveries; non-elective stays admitted through emergency departments; and elective inpatient stays. Contains information on urban-rural locations of the hospital and patient residence.
Sponsoring organization: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

Introducing Telehealth to Rural and Indigenous Communities: A Telehealth 101 Virtual Workshop for Tribes
Webinar recordings from a 2-day workshop on telehealth implementation in rural and Indigenous communities. Presentation topics include telehealth business, technology, standards, and evaluation; health equity; maternal health; Indian Health Service (IHS) resources; telehealth funding; telebehavioral health and telemedicine-based Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT); and other telehealth-related topics.
Sponsoring organizations: American Indian Public Health Resource Center, Health Resources and Services Administration, North Dakota Department of Health
Date: 11/2020

Spatial Access to Vaccines for Children Providers in South Carolina: Implications for HPV Vaccination
Explores access to Vaccines for Children (VFC) enrolled clinics in South Carolina to understand rural/urban disparities in human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination initiation and improve rural HPV vaccination rates. Features information on VFC providers by rural and urban Zip Code Tabulation Areas (ZCTAs), spatial accessibility for VFC by rural and urban ZCTAs, and more.
Author(s): Radhika Ranganathan, Whitney Zahnd, Sayward Harrison, et al.
Location: Preventing Chronic Disease, 17
Date: 12/2020

Transitional Care Management - Simple Process with a Big Impact
Webinar presented by a representative of the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network, showing how to identify and understand the different ways in which transitional care management (TCM) can work in healthcare facilities to improve healthcare quality. Lists the key components within TCM guidelines and identifies which types of providers can or cannot perform TCM services. Transcript available by clicking the three dots above the Subscribe button.
Additional links: Slides
Sponsoring organizations: Association for Rural & Community Health Professional Coding, Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network
Date: 12/2020

Vaccination Implementation Strategies to Consider for Populations Recommended to Receive Initial Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine (Persons Included in Phases 1a-1c)
Guide for state, tribal, local, and territorial immunization programs and other immunization partners to help plan for phases 1a-1c of the COVID-19 vaccination program, which includes healthcare personnel, residents of long-term care facilities, essential workers, older adults, and individuals 16–64 years of age with underlying medical conditions. Covers provider recruitment and enrollment, locating and prioritizing populations, vaccine administration, documentation, and communication.
Additional links: Interim Considerations for Phased Implementation of COVID-19 Vaccination and Sub-Prioritization Among Recommended Populations
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Date: 12/2020

Open Calls for Contributions

Call for Session Proposals: 2021 Rural Child Hunger Summit - VIRTUAL
Deadline: Jan 6, 2021
No Kid Hungry Center for Best Practices
Event Dates: Mar 23 - 24, 2021
Conference Website

Call for Abstracts: 2021 Annual American Public Health Association Meeting and Expo
Deadline: Mar 21, 2021
American Public Health Association
Event Dates: Oct 23 - 27, 2021
Denver, CO
Conference Website

Upcoming Events

Practical Grant Writing Strategies Webinar- Part 1
Time: 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern
Rural Communities Opioid Response Program - Technical Assistance
Care Integration in the Time of COVID: Focus on Patient Experience
Time: 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. Mountain
New Mexico Telehealth Alliance, Southwest Telehealth Resource Center
Rural Transit Planning in the Time of COVID and Beyond
Time: 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern
National Rural Transit Assistance Program
Arizona Telemedicine Program, Arizona Department of Health Services Virtual Office Hours – January
Time: 3:00 p.m. Arizona
Arizona Department of Health Services, Arizona Telemedicine Program, Southwest Telehealth Resource Center
State of the Healthcare Industry: Market Updates for Rural Strategy
Time: 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. Central
National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health
Using Rural Health Research to Inform Health Policy
Time: 1:00 - 2:00 a.m. Central
National Rural Health Association, Rural Health Research Gateway
2021 Annual Arizona Rural & Public Health Policy Forum - VIRTUAL
Time: 2:30 - 5:00 p.m. Mountain (Monday) and 8:30 - 11:30 a.m. Mountain (Tuesday)
Arizona Center for Rural Health
2021 31st Annual National Leadership Forum & SAMHSA's 17th Prevention Day - VIRTUAL
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America
703.706.0560 Ext. 253
Pathway to Professionalism: What Every Team Member Needs to Know
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Central
Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network
A Pathway for Rural Health to Thrive in a Post COVID-19 World
Time: 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Central
Center for Optimizing Rural Health
Suicide Prevention Webinar Series: Interventions for Suicidal Patients: CBT for Suicide Prevention Skills
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Central
Indian Health Service
2021 32nd Annual Rural Health Policy Institute - VIRTUAL
National Rural Health Association
816.756.3140 Ext.12

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