National Rural Health Day

5thAnniversaryLogo_FNLThe 5th Annual National Rural Health Day is less than a month away and NOSORH wants to celebrate with you! A full day of webcasts and webinars is planned to highlight the amazing work of the State Offices and our partners including the Rural Assistance Center and the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy.  Speakers and presenters are lined up to speak on a variety of topics such as Rural Health Delivery System Reform, Veterans Issues in Rural America, and Innovative Models of Care. Look for information coming out soon about times and links for these webinars. Read more.


Policy Update

policy-news-editedThe Policy Committee and the Policy and Program Monitoring Team continue the NOSORH efforts to ensure a response to CMS regarding payment methodologies for rural practices and the growing needs for technical assistance.  Comments are being crafted with information provided by SORH to the CMS Request for Information.  Request for Information (RFI) for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). “Our plan is to share the NOSORH comments with SORH to inform their efforts to respond to the CMS request.” Says Teryl Eisinger, NOSORH Executive Director.  Watch for emails on this later this week. Read more.


Last Call for Registration for the Rural Health Clinic Institute

RHCI Kick-offNOSORH took advantage of some face time and a discount offered by the National Association of Rural Health Clinics to host a kick-off meeting for the Rural Health Clinic Institute (RHCI) on October 26th.  Several states were able to connect and share experiences of working with RHCs in their states.  “It was a great way for SORHs to connect and learn from each other about the needs in their states and resources available in other states. We are all excited about the Institute that will get underway later this month,” says Kassie Clarke, NOSORH Communications and Development Coordinator.  This was an optional event for those who registered early and were able to attend the conference.  Attendees will share their top take-aways with other participants when the webinar series begins on November 12th. Read more.


Committee Updates

Committee NewsBoard of Directors – In October the NOSORH Board took action to approve President-Elect recommendations on NOSORH Board Liaisons, approved draft letters to the Senate and the House regarding the role of SORH and need for increased funding and made plans to address an upcoming vacancy in the 2016 President-Elect position.

Development – The Development Committee effort continues to focus on diversifying funds and building new services for SORH including support for data needs.  In addition the group will work to provide tools to promote the visibility of SORH in conjunction with the observance of 25th anniversary of the SORH program next year. Read more.


Regional Meeting Planning Starts Up!

Regional Meeting Host StatesNOSORH is working with the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy and host states to plan the 2016 regional meetings.  “Planning these meetings is a great opportunity for SORH to share what they need to know and want to hear from each other, NOSORH, the FORHP and other partners,” says Matt Strycker, NOSORH Special Projects Coordinator.  Volunteers are needed for all planning committees, to volunteer or for more information contact Matt Strycker. Read more.


RAC Name Changing to Rural Health Information Hub

RAC logoOn December 1st, the Rural Assistance Center will be relaunching as the Rural Health Information Hub (RHIhub). RAC will make an official announcement about the change via webcast on November 19th, National Rural Health Day. We hope you will all join us for that announcement, which will include Tom Morris from FORHP and NOSORH’s own Teryl Eisinger.

A 1-minute video about the name change is currently available on YouTube – feel free to share that link or play it for conferences or meetings. Read more.


Committee Spotlight: Flex Committee

Committee SpotlightThe Flex Committee provides the State Office of Rural Health perspective on policy issues and serve as a link between State Offices of Rural Health and others implementing the Rural Hospital Flexibility Program including the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy and the Technical Assistance and Services Center.

John Packham from the NV ORH is co-chair of the committee.  John explains, “The committee provides a collegial forum for Flex-program and other SORH staff to discuss and address issues and challenges faced by Flex coordinators as we do our best to implement Flex activities in our respective states. For the past couple of years, our monthly calls have generated well-attended, robust discussion – a majority of states participate on the calls and the calls often last the full 90 minutes – because we’ve focused on the most immediate and pressing issues being dealt with by state Flex programs. Read more.


Promising Practice: ICD-10 – Now what? NC SORH Dedicated to Supporting Rural Providers

PPICD-10 became a reality for all providers on October 1, 2015. It is too early to fully assess the impact from the transition.  Over the next 6 months, the needs of rural providers will be better understood.  If providers in your state still require assistance, look to the North Carolina Office of Rural Health (NCORH) for resources.

NCORH partnered with the NC Community Health Center Association (PCA), the NC Division of Public Health, the NC Association of Local Health Directors and the NC Public Health Association to offer four two-day Regional ICD-10 Education Sessions.  These trainings were conducted in rural regions of the state over a five-month period for over 300 participants.  Additional one-on-one trainings were conducted for individual clinics.  In total, approximately 700 participants were educated on ICD-10. Read more.


New SORH Orientation

New SORH OrientationLast month, NOSORH and FORHP hosted the New SORH Orientation in Rockville, Maryland to welcome new SORH employees and get them acquainted with the many federal programs and to meet with program officers and to network. This year eight participants from across the country who are new to their positions within the past year attended the meeting. Topics at the meeting included learning about the Hospital-State Division, Rural & Frontier Definitions, Overview of the Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW) and the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), Overview of Office of Regional Operations, Overview of USDA Programs, Policy and Research Division Update, and an Overview of Community Based Division to name a few. Read more.


The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy will be hosting its first ever Virtual Resource Fair! 

On November 17th at 1 pm ET, FORHP is hosting a web event to provide FORHP grantees with an array of resources, tools and services that will assist in the implementation and sustainability of their rural health projects, organizations and networks. The Virtual Resource Fair will highlight a few organizations that can offer tools and resources around leadership development, capacity building, conducting community health needs assessments and understanding and calculating programmatic economic impact, to name a few. Read more.


Steal Sheet

New Resources:

1) RAC Name Changing to Rural Health Information Hub

2) New Care Coordination Topic Guide

3) The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy will be hosting its first ever Virtual Resource Fair

Funding Roundup:

1) Quarterly Technical Assistance Call for Grant Recipients

2) Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design’s 2016-2017 Request for Proposals for Rural Communities Facing Design Challenges.

3) RWJF Call for Proposals for Evaluating High-Value Innovations from Low-Resource Communities

Click here for this month’s Steal Sheet.