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  • Spitfire Strategies Strategic Development and Implementation Support for Children’s Coverage Enrollment Drives Priority Area: Expanding Health Care Coverage $102,125

    While the State’s insurance coverage policies for children are relatively expansive, many who are eligible remain without coverage. The New York State Department of Health’s Office of Health Insurance Programs (OHIP) set the goal to inform families about the availability of coverage and to enroll eligible uninsured children and teenagers. Under this grant, Spitfire Strategies (Spitfire) designed and supported focused enrollment drives to promote the expansion of children’s health insurance coverage in New York. Spitfire developed a strategic communications plan with the messages, approaches, and tactics to create a sufficient buzz around enrollment drives in target communities.

    This project was part of a larger NYSHealth authorization that funded a series of quick-strike analyses to help the New York State Department of Health’s (NYSDOH’s) Office of Health Insurance programs find ways to streamline and expand its public health insurance programs.

    Read an NYSHealth special report that contains a summary of findings from this authorization.

    NYSHealth has learned from similar work that media campaigns and enrollment drives work well to increase enrollments and renewals in public health insurance programs, but their success is limited to the time period of the campaign itself. This issue emerged under an NYSHealth-sponsored campaign run by Public Health Solutions to increase awareness among Chinese non-English speaking Medicaid beneficiaries about re-enrollment.

  • Health Management Associates An Assessment of the NYCRx Prescription Drug Assistance Program Priority Area: Special Projects Fund $26,995

    The high cost of prescription drugs can prevent people from filling prescriptions. To address this issue, the federal government created the 340B Drug Pricing Program, which allows health centers to offer deeply discounted medications to their patients. However, the 340B program is often underutilized. NYCRx was created to help eligible health centers overcome barriers to using the 340B program. To help safety-net sites fully maximize 340B savings, NYCRx had to determine why fewer sites have applied for the  program than expected; the causes behind delays in program implementation; and why only a small number of uninsured individuals choose to receive discounted prescription drugs through the program. With funding from NYSHealth, Health Management Associates (HMA) conducted an analysis of the barriers faced by NYCRx, provideed technical assistance to NYCRx staff, and reported findings to NYSHealth.

  • Community Health Care Association of New York State, Inc. (CHCANYS) Improving Diabetes Care at New York State Community Health Centers - Phase 1 Priority Area: Diabetes Prevention and Management $252,577

    Diabetes prevalence in New York State has doubled since 1994 and is expected to grow; 1.8 million New Yorkers suffer from diabetes and 4.2 million have prediabetes. To address this crisis, the New York State Health Foundation (NYSHealth) invested in a $35 million diabetes campaign with the goal of reversing the epidemic. The New York State Diabetes Campaign focuses on improving clinical care and patient outcomes; mobilizing communities to prevent diabetes and support diabetes self-management; and promoting policies that sustain comprehensive and effective care for people with diabetes. To advance the Campaign’s clinical goals among community health centers, NYSHealth funded the Community Health Care Association of New York State (CHCANYS) to provide its members with the technical assistance needed to improve the care and outcomes of their patients with diabetes.

  • Community Service Society of New York Reducing Racial Disparities in Health Outcomes Through a Publicly Financed Insurance Expansion Priority Area: Expanding Health Care Coverage $174,137

    Racial and ethnic minorities in New York are disproportionately uninsured and suffer worse health outcomes than whites. Approximately 22% of black adults, 31% of Latino adults and 22% of Asian/Pacific Islander adults are uninsured, compared with 13% of white adults, according to data from the 2007 Current Population Survey as reported by the Community Service Society of New York (CSSNY). To address this issue, CSSNY provided policymakers with proposals and recommendations to reduce racial disparities in health care access and outcomes for New Yorkers enrolled in public insurance programs.

    This project was part of a larger NYSHealth Coverage Consortium that funded 10 grants to seven universities, policy institutes, and community agencies across the State, supporting projects that could inform State health reform efforts, offer ways to streamline enrollment in public programs, significantly reduce costs and improve quality, and test ideas for expanding coverage among small employers, sole proprietors, and self-employed people.

    Read an NYSHealth special report that contains a summary of findings from this consortium.

  • Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services (JBFCS) “Home Again: Veterans Families Readjustment & Reintegration” Priority Area: Veterans' Health $279,332

    Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services (JBFCS) used a startup grant to create family-focused mental health services for veterans returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and for their families living in the Bronx. The goal was to create a program that would ultimately become sustainable through insurance reimbursements. JBFCS conducted outreach to identify veterans in need of mental health services. This was a challenge because there was no centralized database containing this type of information. JBFCS representatives discovered the need was there; however, veterans felt stigmatized by asking for mental health services. JBFCS’s Center for Trauma Program Innovation oversaw the project because it has experience in the field of mental health care for traumatic stress disorders. JBFCS expanded the program design in an effort to keep the program viable for the long-term.

  • Veterans Outreach Center, Inc. “Operation Welcome Home and Recovery and Veterans Reintegration Assistance Program” Priority Area: Veterans' Health $372,335

    Veterans Outreach Center (VOC) of Rochester, New York, helps veterans and their families transition to civilian life after service. In 2008, VOC launched “Operation Welcome Home and Recovery” to assist veterans in accessing the medical, social, and psychological services they were entitled to, and to help them heal and readjust into society. The project’s goals focused on addressing gaps that the VOC observed in obtaining medical, social, and psychological services, and developing a community-based accessible system of care that addressed the needs of veterans and their families who live in New York State’s Veterans Integrated Service Network 2 (VISN 2). VOC collected data and identified barriers to service, developed outreach efforts and communications materials to connect with veterans and their families, engaged veterans directly, and trained and sensitized community organizations, professionals, and service providers to the unique needs of veterans.

    Grantee Update:

    The Rochester Veterans Outreach Center launched The Greater Rochester Veterans Therapeutic Recreation Program, or Vet Rec, to help veterans with both physical and mental injuries through recreational activities like golf and fly fishing.

    View a YNN Rochester story from August 18, 2009, "Agencies Team Up to Offer Vets Therapeutic Recreation," to learn more details about this program.
     

  • Institute for Family Health The New York State Diabetes Campaign Priority Area: Diabetes Prevention and Management $593,371

    The Institute for Family Health is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality and availability of family practice services to medically underserved populations. The Institute worked with the leadership of NYSHealth to establish and lead the New York State Diabetes Campaign. The Campaign focused on reversing the diabetes epidemic in New York State by improving primary care for patients with diabetes, mobilizing community assets, and promoting public and private policies.

  • Center for Children and Families, Georgetown University Health Policy Institute Eligibility Simplification Project for New York State Department of Health Priority Area: Expanding Health Care Coverage $50,000

    Although New York State has a relatively broad set of health insurance coverage options available to its residents below certain income levels, the public has trouble understanding their eligibility for these programs. Additionally, health care providers, State and county staff, and other stakeholders often have difficulty navigating who is eligible for what. To address this issue, the New York State Department of Health's Office of Health Insurance Programs (OHIP) asked NYSHealth to engage the Center for Children and Families (CCF) at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute to determine which changes to State law would be possible under Federal law to simplify coverage options and improve program participation rates. CCF then conducted a study to review the New York State Medicaid program’s multiple and overlapping eligibility categories and recommended options for OHIP to collapse and simplify those categories.

    This project was part of a larger NYSHealth authorization that funded a series of quick-strike analyses to help the New York State Department of Health’s (NYSDOH’s) Office of Health Insurance Programs find ways to streamline and expand its public health insurance programs.

    Read an NYSHealth special report that contains a summary of findings from this authorization.

  • Manatt Health Solutions Streamlining Medicaid Spend Down Priority Area: Expanding Health Care Coverage $48,204

    The Medicaid Excess Income program is an optional Federal program that allows individuals with large or ongoing medical expenses access to Medicaid coverage, even though their household income is too high to meet the regular Medicaid income eligibility standards. Individuals “spend down” by paying in or incurring medical expenses that equal or exceed the difference between their monthly income and the Medicaid eligibility level. However, Local Departments of Social Service (Local Districts) responsible for gathering health care receipts and payments and tracking these enrollees’ continued eligibility are struggling to manage the eligibility of Medicaid recipients enrolled in the Excess Income program. Under this grant, Manatt Health Solutions (Manatt) analyzed the Excess Income Program in New York State, and identified ways to improve the administrative efficiency and programmatic implementation of its enrollment and eligibility processes. The results of this report galvanized the consumer advocacy community to use the report as leverage to push for reforms of the Excess Income program.

    This project was part of a larger NYSHealth authorization that funded a series of quick-strike analyses to help the New York State Department of Health’s Office of Health Insurance Programs find ways to streamline and expand its public health insurance programs.

    Read an NYSHealth special report that contains a summary of findings from this authorization.

    Read Streamlining New York’s Medicaid Excess Income Program, a public report produced by Manatt about the Excess Income program, complete with a description of the program, characteristics and health care needs of enrollees, and options for streamlining the program.

    One of the reports’ recommendations, which the New York State Department of Health’s Office of Health Insurance Programs has implemented, is the establishment of a new Statewide Enrollment Center for Medicaid to centralize and streamline enrollment and renewal tasks across its public health insurance programs.

  • Hudson Headwaters Health Network Collaborative Case Management to Reduce Hospital Readmissions Priority Area: Expanding Health Care Coverage $49,170

    Hospital readmissions are costly to the health care system and too often traumatizing to patients and their families—a sign of ineffective and fractured health care service delivery. The readmission rate for hospitals in the Glens Falls metropolitan area is 18.5%—a full 6% higher than the statewide average. A planning grant to Hudson Headwaters helped them and their partner organizations, Glens Falls Hospital, and Warren and Washington County Home Health Service Agencies, assess the problem and develop an intervention that addresses the problem.

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