HRSA eNews May 2, 2019

Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America

hrsa administrator dr. george sigounas

During the 2019 State of the Union address, the Trump administration announced the new “Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America.” This will be a ten year initiative beginning in FY 2020 to achieve the important goal of reducing new HIV infections to less than 3,000 per year by 2030. 

Read more about HRSA's role in ending the HIV epidemic.

APPLY NOW: Rural Communities Opioid Response Program Medication-Assisted Treatment Expansion

photo of a sunset in a field

The Health Resources and Services Administration's (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) has released a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for a new Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) initiative called RCORP-Medication-Assisted Treatment Expansion (HRSA-19-102). HRSA plans to invest approximately $8 million in rural communities as part of this funding opportunity.

Successful RCORP-Medication-Assisted Treatment Expansion (MAT Expansion) award recipients will receive up to $725,000 for a three-year period of performance to establish or expand medication-assisted treatment (MAT) in eligible hospitals, health clinics, or tribal organizations located in high-risk rural communities.

Read the press release.

Life Expectancy Gap Illustrates Disparities

HRSA Administrator Dr. George Sigounas speaking at the National Minority Health Month event

HRSA Administrator Dr. George Sigounas told a standing room-only audience last week that HRSA is deeply involved in addressing racial and ethnic health disparities -- noting that two-thirds of health center patients are minorities. The agency affords care to one in three impoverished people in America, including half those living with HIV/AIDS.

In some cities and regions, the life expectancy gap can differ by decades from one neighborhood to the next, said Dr. George A. Mensah of the National Institutes of Health in an April observance of National Minority Health Month attended by leaders from throughout HHS.

Read more about life expectancy and health disparities.

HRSA HAB Releases Revised Policy Clarification Notice

red ribbon

HRSA’s HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) has revised Policy Clarification Notice (PCN) 13-02 Clarifications on Ryan White Program Client Eligibility Determinations and Recertifications Requirements (PDF - 37 KB) to include clarifications on rapid eligibility determinations. HRSA HAB also posted a new dear colleague letter (PDF - 170 KB) today that provides background on the importance in being able to quickly identify people living with HIV who are eligible to receive HRSA Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP) services. HRSA RWHAP recipients should contact their HRSA HAB project officers with any questions about the additional clarifications provided in PCN 13-02 or the dear colleague letter.

HRSA Hosts 200 Grantees

Deputy Administrator Brian LeClair addressing 200 HRSA grantees

Deputy Administrator Brian LeClair welcomed grantees from 40 States, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to two days of  workshops on how to maintain "healthy grants."

Said LeClair: "We jump at the opportunity to visit with the people who are on the front lines ... to improve the health of the nation."

Read more about the grantees visit to HRSA.

Join us to Chat about #BHealthy

national health service corps twitter chat on integrating behavioral health into primary care

Tweet with us during Mental Health Month as we discuss the importance of “Integrating Behavioral Health into Primary Care Settings.” Learn the latest best practices, provider tips, tools, and more.

Participation is easy:

  • Join us on the @HRSAgov HRSA exit disclaimer Twitter page May 22 at 3:00 p.m. EDT.
  • Follow us if you haven’t already.
  • Tweet your questions and include our #BHealthy hashtag to participate in the chat.

Become a New NHSC-Approved Site

hrsa nhsc sites application is now open

Apply now to become a National Health Service Corps (NHSC) approved site. Eligible primary health care sites include health care facilities that provide outpatient, ambulatory and primary health care services (medical, dental, and behavioral health) to people living in high-need urban and rural areas. Sites providing general substance use disorder (SUD) Treatment, a Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) Program or an Opioid Treatment Program (OTP) are also eligible to apply.

Applications are due May 30.

Learn more about the NHSC new site application.

From Africa to the United States: Addressing Access to Early Detection and Treatment of Cervical and Breast Cancers

Professor Groesbeck Preer Parham, MD

Renowned gynecologic oncologist Dr. Groesbeck Parham will visit HRSA to present strategies for improving access to care for cervical and breast cancer early detection and treatment. He will discuss how these strategies, with the use of technology and task-shifting, may be applied to gynecological practices in the U.S.

Monday, May 13
10:30 a.m. - Noon EDT
Join the webcast the day of the session HRSA Exit Disclaimer

Dr. Parham’s expertise is concentrated on the link between HIV/AIDS and cervical cancer in Zambia, Africa. His work on scaling up public sector cervical and breast cancer services in resource-poor global environments has been sought by the World Health Organization and United Nations Population Fund.

National Women’s Health Week

11.5 million women (18 years and older) were served at HRSA-funded health centers in 2017

The 20th annual National Women's Health Week kicks off on Mother's Day, May 12. This year’s theme, Find Your Health empowers women to make their health a top priority and take simple, steps to embrace healthier lifestyles.

Take charge of your health and visit a HRSA-funded health center in your community. Download the women’s health infographic (PDF - 344 KB) and learn how HRSA delivers critical health services for women.

Webinar - Maternal Mortality

silhouette of a pregnant woman

HRSA is hosting a Maternal Mortality Webinar on Wednesday, May 15 from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. EDT.

This event is a collaboration between HRSA's Office of Regional Operations (Regions 5 and 7), Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Office of Women’s Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Illinois Department of Public Health. Presenters will discuss ongoing federal and state initiatives to address maternal mortality, clinical research, and resources to improve maternal mortality rates. Register to attend HRSA Exit Disclaimer. Contact Amanda Walrup for questions.

Webinar - Using Telehealth to Increase Access to Dental Care

keyboard with a key labeled telemedicine

Part of our Telehealth Learning Webinar Series, this webinar will discuss:

  • Reducing oral health disparities in rural communities through dental therapy and telehealth innovations such as the Children’s Dental Services Experience.
  • The methodology and results of the Virtual Dental Home system developed in California and now deployed in multiple states.

The webinar is May 2, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. EDT. Register today HRSA Exit Disclaimer. Contact Nancy Rios for questions.

Learn more about telehealth.

Webinar Series - HEP Talks

HEP Talks - Ideas on viral hepatitis care

In recognition of Hepatitis Awareness Month (May) and Hepatitis Testing Day (May 19), HRSA will host “HEP Talks.” Like TED Talks, these will be condensed and informative presentations focused on emerging and important viral hepatitis topics. Each session features a brief talk by a viral hepatitis expert followed by an opportunity for discussion and questions. Visit the Health Center Program Technical Assistance Calendar for session descriptions and access information.

  • Hepatitis B Testing May 2 3:30-4:15 p.m. EDT
  • Hepatitis C and the Opioid Epidemic May 16 3:00-3:45 p.m. EDT
  • Hepatitis C and the Cure May 23 3:30-4:15 p.m. EDT
  • Hepatitis B and Perinatal Transmission May 30 3:00-3:45 p.m. EDT

Teens Give Heartfelt Advice to HRSA

teens from the 4h club visiting hrsa

Last month, a delegation of 15 teens from 13 states and the Northern Mariana Islands visited HRSA headquarters under the auspices of the 4-H Club's National Congress. They offered practical insights on how to stop bullying as part of the 4-H "Breaking the Code" campaign.

Read more about the teens visit to HRSA.

Patient Safety Partners Convene at HRSA

Dr. Luis Padilla -- Associate Administrator of the Bureau of Health Workforce

Dr. Luis Padilla -- Associate Administrator of the Bureau of Health Workforce -- welcomed officials from 30 states on April 9 for a forum on the National Practitioner Data Bank. Authorized by President Reagan as a patient-safety check, the system today processes a background query every four seconds.

"From state licensing boards to hospital administrators and medical malpractice payers, the wide range of stakeholders who are here is quite impressive ...The information in HRSA's NPDB protects our nation against health care malpractice, waste, fraud and abuse. Everyone here today plays a critical role in this effort, as (BHW) processed over 8.4 million queries last year."

Learn more about the National Practitioner Data Bank.

Dr. Warren Urges Call to Action

Dr. Michael Warren -- Associate Administrator of HRSA's Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB)

More than 800 maternal and child health leaders, epidemiologists, researchers and parent representatives meeting last month in San Antonio received a resounding call to action from Dr. Michael Warren -- Associate Administrator of HRSA's Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) -- on common sense measures to save children's lives, and the lives of their mothers.

"We can look at (the) challenges and feel hopeless," Warren said. "But I hope that instead, you feel on fire."

"Just in the last 36 years alone, we've cut the national infant mortality rate by about half -- from 11.9 in 1981 to 5.8 in 2017," he said at the 2019 Association of Maternal Child Health Programs Conference. "That's noteworthy. And it's still not enough.

Read more about Dr. Warren's call to action.

Mystery Persists in Hispanic Health

Dr. Eliseo J. Pérez-Stable, Director of the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

The prevalence of cancer, heart disease and stroke -- the three leading causes of death in the United States -- is lower among Hispanic Americans than their risk factors might suggest, and generally better than rates within other minority populations, an NIH expert said April 11.

Speaking before HRSA's Hispanic Employee Resource Group, Dr. Eliseo J. Pérez-Stable called the incongruity "an epidemiologic paradox."

Read more about the findings Dr. Pérez-Stable shared.

Date Last Reviewed:  May 2019

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