CHAD has supported expanding Medicaid in the Dakotas for many years as a way to increase access to health coverage and needed care for our patients and our neighbors across the two states. We have been proud to be a part of a successful multi-sector coalition supporting and maintaining Medicaid expansion in North Dakota for many years. In South Dakota, we have encouraged the legislature and both the Daugaard and Noem administrations to join North Dakota and 37 others states in expanding access to health care through the Medicaid program, but those efforts have not yet been successful. For that reason, we have joined South Dakotans Decide Healthcare (SDDH) to launch a ballot initiative campaign in South Dakota. SDDH is supported by health care providers, farmers, teachers, seniors, small business owners, and more.

SDDH has recently launched the next phase of their campaign for Medicaid expansion: collecting signatures. And you can help! We need supporters to sign the petition and spread the word about Medicaid expansion to friends, family, and neighbors. Together, we will collect thousands of signatures from across the state to get this common-sense issue on the ballot in 2022. You can learn more about volunteer opportunities here such as circulating and notarizing petitions and find a petition to sign here. You can help spread the word by liking the CHAD Facebook page (we’ll be sharing lots of Medicaid expansion posts) and the SDDH Facebook page.  You can also post this video to your health center or personal social media channels.

Medicaid expansion will support our rural providers and provide increased access to health care for over 40,000 hardworking South Dakotans. But we have a lot of work ahead of us. If you’d like to be added to our advocacy mailing list to get updates on this initiative and others supported by health centers in the Dakotas, email Carmen Toft.
CHCs in the News
The Horizon Health Foundation received a grant to support their Smiles for Miles program via KJAM.
Live Well Sioux Falls and Falls Community Health Partner on Good Food for All Produce Distribution
Through a program collaboration with Partnership for a Healthier America, Live Well Sioux Falls recently started a produce distribution program in the Hayward Elementary School neighborhood in Sioux Falls. Partnering with Falls Community Health, which has a school-based clinic at Hayward, along with Sioux Falls Parks & Recreation and the Sioux Falls School District, families in the neighborhood can pick up a box of fresh produce each week for 12 weeks. In addition, families without transportation access can sign up for box delivery thanks to the Helpline Center’s partnership with Door Dash.

The program, which starts this week and runs through the end of September, is designed to encourage families, especially kids, to increase their fruit and vegetable consumption. The hope is that consistent exposure to produce will foster lifelong healthy eating habits and break the cycle of chronic disease. Incredibly, over 3,000 pounds of fresh produce was given away on the first night.

Horizon Health Care Breaks Ground on the New Lake Preston Clinic
Horizon Health Care is relocating their Lake Preston Community Health Center downtown to 322 North Main Street. Horizon hosted a groundbreaking event on Wednesday, June 30, to celebrate the new location and recognize those who contributed to and supported the new clinic’s development. Wade Erickson, new chief executive officer for Horizon, and local leaders spoke on the importance and necessity of health care for families in rural communities and Lake Preston residents.

Due to increasing infrastructure challenges within the current building, Horizon determined a new location for their community health center would create a better environment for employees and patients. The new clinic is expected to be finished in January 2022. It includes three exam rooms, a nurses’ station, an open lobby area, and more.
North Dakota Pop-up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics
The North Dakota Department of Health is hosting free, pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinics across the state. These are available for immediate walk-ins and can be hosted at various sites, including local stores, community events, and worksites. To suggest a pop-up clinic in a specific North Dakota community, the Department of Health suggests first reaching out to the local public health unit. If the local public health unit does not have availability, the Department of Health may be able to set up a pop-up clinic by request. Email Ryan Ripley for more information.
North Dakota Department of Health Collecting COVID-19 Stories
Local, personal stories are one of the most effective public health messaging tools. For instance, this story of a 46-year-old Western North Dakota man who died of COVID-19 and regretted not prioritizing vaccine has been circulated widely around the state. Community members who may be interested in sharing their personal stories should email the North Dakota Department of Health at Stories could include those impacted by COVID-19 (either through their own experience or a loved one) or could also be individuals who want to share a message about the importance of vaccination. Particularly helpful may be individuals who were hesitant to be vaccinated but have had a change of heart and moved forward with vaccination focusing on what changed their mind and what they want others to know about vaccination.
COVID-19 and the Delta Variant
The COVID-19 Delta variant (B.1.617.2) was confirmed in North Dakota and South Dakota during June. The Delta variant has caused concerns because the variant spreads faster from person to person than the original virus and previous variants. The variant was first detected in India in December 2020 and has spread rapidly around the world. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that over 50% of COVID-19 cases in the US are now due to the Delta variant varying significantly by region of the US.

COVID-19 vaccines have proven effective against the Delta variant. However, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are significantly less effective against Delta with only one dose, underlining the importance of completing the vaccine series. Getting COVID-19 may offer some natural protection, known as immunity. However, experts don’t know for sure how long this protection lasts, and the risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 far outweighs any benefits of natural immunity.

Health care providers should continue testing anyone who presents with COVID-19 symptoms. Providers should submit positive samples to the state public health laboratory for sequencing.
HIV Screening, Prevention, and Treatment for Patients in Primary Care
Join CHAD for this four-part webinar series focusing on equipping health care providers and teams with the knowledge and comfortability needed to support universal HIV screening and prevention in primary care. Today, more tools than ever are available to prevent HIV. The series will walk participants through the HIV care continuum, a public health model that outlines the stages people with HIV go through from diagnosis to achieving and maintaining viral suppression. People living with HIV who achieve and keep an undetectable viral load can live long, healthy lives.

Presented by Jennifer A. Sobolik, CNP and AAHIVM HIV specialist at Community Health Center of the Black Hills, this series will guide participants through taking comprehensive sexual health histories, HIV prevention strategies, and integrating HIV care in primary care. The series is intended for primary care teams to improve access to care and quality of life for people living with or who are at risk for acquiring HIV.

Let's Talk about Sex
August 10 | 12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT

This webinar will address multiple ways people contract HIV. The speaker will discuss strategies to become more comfortable with taking sexual health histories, using inclusive language, and what NOT to do when assessing a patient’s risk of contracting HIV. The session will include a review of universal HIV screening guidelines as a standard of care. Register here.

Prevention is Key
September 21 | 12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT

In this presentation, the speaker will discuss how to prevent individuals from getting HIV in the first place. Topics will include HIV prevention strategies, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) indications and how to prescribe PrEP, controlling the viral load with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), and U=U (undetectable equals untransmittable). Register here.

My Patient’s HIV Test is Positive. Now What?
October 19 | 12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT

This webinar will review strategies to link newly diagnosed patients to care, engage them in care, and keep them retained in care.  The session will feature best practices from a community health center setting where services are provided as a routine component of primary care. Register here.

Primary Care and Management for People Living with HIV
November 9 | 12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT

In this final presentation of the series, the speaker will lead with the primary care perspective on HIV-related medical care. Participants will review evidence-based treatment guidelines and learn the basics to help any medical provider effectively care for someone living with HIV. Register here.  
National Health Center Week: The Health Center Journey
August 8-14 is National Health Center Week, and health centers in North Dakota and South Dakota are taking this moment to celebrate. The Dakotas’ network of ten health center organizations will be using this opportunity to thank their patients and the communities they serve and highlight the important contributions health centers make to the health care system in urban and rural communities. It is also an excellent opportunity for health centers to recognize their outstanding staff for all they do and to give back to the communities they call home.

CHAD is looking forward to taking this year’s health center week on the road! During the week, CHAD staff plan to visit every delivery site in both states to attend events, bring treats, and thank our members in person. Focus days for the week include:
  • Sunday, August 8 – Whole Person Day, bringing attention to the social and economic factors that impact our health;
  • Monday, August 9 – Health Care for the Homeless Day, honoring the work being done at health centers to provide high-quality, comprehensive primary care, behavioral health care, case management, outreach, and other services to meet the needs of the unhoused;
  • Tuesday, August 10 – Economic Impact Day, highlighting the combined economic impact of health centers across North Dakota and South Dakota of over $183,000,000 in 2020;
  • Wednesday, August 11 – Patient Appreciation Day, celebrating patients and board members who keep health centers accountable and abreast of community needs;
  • Thursday, August 12 – Legislative Day, thanking local partners and government officials at the local, state, and national level for their support and collaboration;
  • Friday, August 13 – Staff Appreciation Day, spotlighting the diligent work of health center staff and volunteers; and,
  • Saturday, August 14 – Children’s Health Day, celebrating the more than 33,500 children in the Dakotas get their primary health care from a health center.
HRSA Announces New Loan Repayment Program for Behavioral Health Providers
Health centers are working to end substance use disorders (SUD) within communities every day. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is here to help with the new Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery Loan Repayment Program (STAR LRP.)

HRSA will accept applications for this program through Thursday, July 22 at 6:30 pm CT/ 5:30 pm MT. Providers can get up to $250,000 from the STAR LRP in exchange for six years of full-time service at an approved facility. Behavioral health clinicians, paraprofessionals, clinical support staff, and many others trained in SUD treatment are encouraged to apply. Visit here for more information.
CHAMPS Awards – Nominations Due July 26
Each year, CHAMPS presents awards to staff and board members of Region VIII health centers and related organizations to recognize exceptional contributions to the health center community. Over the years, this process has allowed CHAMPS to honor numerous highly deserving individuals from across the region for their outstanding advocacy, leadership, and dedication to the health center mission. The call for nominations for the 2021 CHAMPS Awards is now open. Visit the CHAMPS Awards webpage for more details and nominate a candidate by Monday, July 26.
CHAMPS Next Level Skills for Health Center Supervisors and Managers
Registration is now open for CHAMPS’ Beyond CORE Competencies: Next Level Skills for Health Center Supervisors and Managers taking place via Zoom on Wednesdays, September 1 – October 6. The Next Level Skills training is a step up from the CORE Competencies Training, allowing health center managers and supervisors to delve deeper into the best practices, knowledge, and skills needed to be a great manager. This course begins with a review of crucial skills needed to hire, coach, retain, and manage others. Participants will then move to higher-level learning for:
  • effectively engaging a diverse workforce;
  • avoiding, circumventing, and de-escalating conflict;
  • strengthening day-to-day decision-making practices; and,
  • successfully managing change.

CHAD is offering a limited number of registration scholarships for this course. Available scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Please visit the CHAMPS
Leadership Learning Opportunities webpage for more information and register by Wednesday, August 4.

Enrollments Surpass 2M during 2021 SEP Ahead of August 15 Deadline
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released new enrollment reports showing more than two million people have signed up for health coverage during the Biden-Harris Administration’s 2021 Special Enrollment Period (SEP), which will conclude on August 15. In addition, this report shows access to health care continues to expand, with 81 million people receiving coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) as of February 2021. The historic and rising enrollments demonstrate how the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, and other vital health care programs deliver high-quality, affordable health care to millions of Americans, families, and children.

The June Marketplace SEP report shows that of the new and returning consumers who have selected a plan since April 1, 1.2 million consumers (34%) have selected a plan that costs $10 or less per month after the American Rescue Plan’s (ARP) premium reductions. The ARP’s expanded premium tax credits have reduced premiums, increased savings, and given consumers access to quality, affordable health care coverage through the Marketplace, and President Biden has proposed to make these lower premiums permanent as laid out in his Build Back Better Agenda.

Harry’s Open Minds Initiative
Harry’s has been committed to mental health for several years, but this year the need for solutions has become even clearer. Recent research shows that more than three in four men recognize that mental health is in a state of crisis in the US. The Harry’s Open Minds Initiative will award $5M over three years to a nonprofit organization (or group of organizations) that want to change the state of mental health today. If interested in applying, check out the website for more details and information on how to apply. Harry’s is hosting a webinar on July 20th at 3:00 pm CT/ 2:00 pm MT to learn more.
GP11 Network News
Provider Satisfaction Survey Coming Soon

Community HealthCare Association of the Dakotas (CHAD) has partnered with the Great Plains Health Data Network (GPHDN) and health centers across North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming to develop a provider satisfaction series and deploy a provider satisfaction survey. 

Provider satisfaction is a critical component of providing effective, efficient, and high-quality health care. The survey will measure four elements of provider satisfaction, including productivity, quality, patient satisfaction/interaction, and engagement with health information technology (HIT). This collaborative effort will provide participating health centers with actionable information and insight about their providers’ satisfaction while also offering important comparative data to health centers in North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. 

The survey will be delivered the week of August 2 for CHAD members through Work Tango, an online employee engagement platform. WorkTango helps companies hear the voice of their employees, which is integral in today’s rapidly changing workplace. The WorkTango platform creates a space for employees to offer their feedback anonymously and helps companies get real-time insight to act on feedback quickly, make better decisions, and build a more aligned and engaged workforce.

A meeting for CHAD GPHDN leaders and CHAD human resource staff is scheduled for Monday, July 19 at 2:00 pm CT/ 1:00 pm MT to learn about the next steps to deploy the provider satisfaction survey. Please contact Becky Wahl with any questions about the provider satisfaction series or survey.
Microsoft Security Alert

Microsoft is recommending all Windows users install any updates immediately due to a security flaw in the operating system. The security flaw, which is being called PrintNightmare, affects the Windows Print Spooler service. It was exposed as a vulnerability when a cybersecurity group accidentally posted a how-to guide to exploit it. Using the guide, hackers can exploit the vulnerability to install programs, view/delete data, and create user accounts with full user rights. Additional information about the vulnerability can be found on Microsoft’s website here. Also, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) posted this alert, which contains helpful links.
Call for Applications: Teledentistry Learning Collaborative

The National Network for Oral Health Access (NNOHA) is seeking health centers to participate in a virtual learning collaborative on teledentistry. The goal is to increase access to oral health services through synchronous teledentistry by using more efficient practice systems, patient engageme
Understanding and Applying SDOH Screening Data to Address Barriers to Health

The Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO), Health Outreach Partners, MHP Salud, and National Health Care for the Homeless Council invite health centers to learn strategies to screen special and vulnerable populations for social determinants of health (SDOH) and build effective practices to begin addressing SDOH through outreach and enabling services.

Wednesday, July 21
2:00-3:30 pm CT/ 1:00-2:30 pm MT

Measuring and Maximizing Provider Satisfaction

Join CHAD for this three-part series explaining the importance of provider satisfaction, its effect on health center performance, and how to identify and measure provider satisfaction. The webinar series will culminate in a final session at the CHAD in-person conference in September, discussing how to improve satisfaction using health information technology (HIT). Presented by CURIS Consulting, the series will include the process of distributing a survey to providers to evaluate satisfaction and analyze the results of CHAD members and the Great Plains Health Data Network (GPHDN). The intended audience for this three-part series is c-suite staff, HIT staff, clinical leads, and human resources staff.

Identification of Provider Burden
In this presentation, attendees will focus on identifying contributing factors and triggers associated with provider burden. The presenter will discuss questions included in the CHAD and GPHDN provider satisfaction survey tool and the process to distribute the survey.

Wednesday, July 21
11:00 am CT / 10:00 am MT
Register here.

Measuring Provider Satisfaction
In this final webinar, presenters will share how to measure provider satisfaction and how to evaluate the data. The CHAD and GPHDN provider satisfaction survey results will be analyzed and shared with attendees during the presentation.

Wednesday, August 25
11:00 am CT / 10:00 am MT
Register here.

Webinars & Meetings
Find these and other events on the CHAD website.

Whole Person Care: Oral Health Webinar Series

Oral health can play a critical role in systemic health. Integration of oral health and primary care practice is a strategy to increase access to oral health care. Presented by the Wyoming Primary Care Association and the National Network for Oral Health Access (NNOHA), this webinar series will share the framework for integration of oral health, primary care practice, and behavioral health.

This series will also describe the importance of medical and dental integration in primary care to promote whole-person care. Presenters will also review the clinical relationship between diabetes and oral health and the action steps primary care providers can take to assess, evaluate, and manage the impact of oral health status on an individual’s diabetes.

Mondays, July 26 and August 9
12:00 pm CT/ 11:00 am MT
Register here.

Today with Macrae

The Today with Macrae: Health Center Program Updates webcast made several changes to their summer session schedule. The July 29 meeting moved to Tuesday, July 27, the August 19 session was canceled, and the September 30 session was moved to Tuesday, September 21.

Tuesday, July 27
2:00 pm CT/ 1:00 pm MT

Join the day of the session

If you prefer to join by phone: 833-568-8864
When prompted, enter meeting/webinar ID: 160 464 1708

Integrating Behavioral Health in Primary Care Practice

Whether acute or chronic, physical conditions impact mental health and vice versa. Federally qualified health centers across the Dakotas utilize an integrated care model to identify patients needing services and engage the health care team and patient in shared decision-making.

Brought to you by the Great Plains Quality Innovation Network and the South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care, presenter Robin Landwehr, LPCC, behavioral health and substance use disorder program manager at CHAD, will share valuable insights for effectively integrating behavioral health services within a primary care practice.

Monday, August 2
12:00 pm CT/ 11:00 am MT
Register here.
Is Zero Burnout Possible in Primary Care?

Drawing on recently published research from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s EvidenceNOW initiative, Dr. Samuel Edwards will share insights for primary care practices seeking to assess and address provider burnout. Dr. Edwards will highlight associations between quality improvement strategies, EHR capabilities, and satisfaction among practices with zero-burnout versus high burnout. Key and sometimes surprising takeaways regarding leadership, workplace environment and culture, EHR use, and more from this research will be discussed. This webinar is presented by the Health Information Technology, Evaluation, and Quality Center.

Wednesday, August 4
2:00 pm CT/ 1:00 pm MT
Register here
South Dakota Department of Health COVID-19 Update

The South Dakota Department of Health hosts a monthly COVID-19 webinar for health care facilities, medical providers, laboratorians, long-term care facilities, EMS providers, and other health professionals.

Thursday, August 12
11:00 am CT/ 10:00 am MT
For call-in information, please join the listserv here. Find archived calls and slides here
Staffing Transformation Following PCMH Recognition among HRSA-Funded Health Centers

Register today for this webinar exploring how a patient-centered medical home (PCMH) recognition at health centers has affected staffing capacity to deliver team-based integrated care. PCMH recognition aims to improve patient outcomes and has been promoted through the Health Center Program with training, TA, and funding support. The speaker will feature findings from a recent data analysis from the UDS and the HRSA accreditation and PCMH recognition initiatives to identify health center staffing infrastructure changes.

Thursday, August 26
12:00 pm CT/ 11:00 am MT
2021 CHAD Conference

Registration is open for the 2021 CHAD Conference this fall in Rapid City, SD. Paired with the Great Plains Health Data Network summit, the 2021 CHAD Conference will feature speakers and panelists who will look at the history of the health center movement as a way to inform the current moment and look forward to the future’s potential. Participants will connect to the past through stories and learn how to use stories to continue to be community-driven, equity-oriented, and patient-centered organizations and how we can continue to live out the values of the health center movement in the current context. Tracks include workforce, leadership, health equity, clinical quality, and behavioral health. Visit our conference website for registration, schedule, and room details.

September 14 and 15
Register here.

CHAD Network Team Meetings

Friday, July 16 at 12:00 pm CT/ 11:00 am MT – Behavioral Health Work Group
Tuesday, July 27 at 1:00 pm CT/ 12:00 pm MT – Outreach & Enrollment Network Team Meeting
Tuesday, July 27 at 3:00 pm CT/ 2:00 pm MT – CFO & Finance Manager Roundtable

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