Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Winter Weather Preparedness

Are You Prepared for a Winter Storm?

Here Are Some Tips and Advice to Make Sure You Are Ready

Everyone is talking about the blizzard in the Northeast.  It has affected many people and would definitely not be a situation you would want to be in if you weren't prepared. Here are some tips to make sure you are prepared in case winter weather affects your region. 


Basic Supply Kit

A good start to being prepared for a winter storm is creating a basic disaster supply kit. Ready.gov recommends:
  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Manual can opener for food
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger


In the chance that you are not home when a storm or disaster hits, it is a very good idea to make sure your vehicle is stocked with an emergency kit too.  

Car and Emergency Checklist

The CDC has a very handy checklist to prepare you for an emergency.  The thorough list includes: a Communications Checklist, a Heating Checklist, a Cooking & Lighting Checklist, a Food & Safety Checklist, a Water Checklist and a Car & Emergency Checklist.  View the checklists and get prepared here!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

2014 Year End Review


OACHC Reflects on the Past Year and Sets Goals for 2015


1. Maintaining Medicaid Coverage & Service Levels for Ohioans
2. Fixing the Fiscal Cliff
3. Helping to Reduce Infant Mortality on Ohio
4. Spreading Awareness and Information About Colorectal Cancer Screenings



  • 84 delivery sites among 27 health centers are now nationally recognized as Patient Centered Medical Homes representing 41% of Ohio's CHC Sites! (48 sites either re-certified or gained new certification in 2014). As a comparison, less than 10% of all primary care practices in Ohio are nationally recognized as PCMHs.

  • Advocated for state and federal legislation and policies impacting Ohio's CHC with 100% success including the implementation of presumptive eligibility (PE) for all Medicaid eligible with FQHCs and FQHC Look-Alikes as qualified entities to preform PE (first in the country); enactment of FY 2015 omnibus appropriations bill, which included $5.1 billion in total funding for FQHCs, the highest in program history.

  • First in the country - partnered with Nationwide Children's Hospital to provide Maintenance of Certification (MOC) for Health Center physicians who include oral health screenings and fluoride varnish applications into the children's well child check-ups.

  • Restructured the Board Quality Committee and adopted, for the first time, focus UDS measures with unanimous acceptance from the Board. OACHC also launched its Dental Steering Committee, and the first-ever Advocacy Subcommittee which hit the ground running on several key advocacy initiatives.

  • Year 1 of Ohio Enrollment, 381 people were trained, 147, 615 assists were made and 36,771 Ohioans were enrolled in the Marketplace and Medicaid. 

  • Training and conference attendance increased by 15%.



  • Clinical & Dental
  • Advocacy & Legislative
  • Outreach & Enrollment
  • Workforce & Americorps
  • Communication & Training
  • Staff




Friday, January 16, 2015

Health Value – The New Measure in Ohio

Health Value – The New Measure in Ohio

Clinically Speaking with Dr. Wymyslo

The Health Policy Institute of Ohio has developed and recently released a new measure that is certain to create a lot of discussion and debate in the near future...the Health Value Dashboard.
This measure is meant to look beyond the usual quality metrics used to estimate population health (with Ohio most recently ranking 40th worst in the US in overall health), and factor in the cost per capita of achieving that level of health (for which, unfortunately, Ohio ranks as 40th highest cost per capita in the nation). Because we both scored low in overall health and high in cost, the health value score for our state is calculated to be 47th worst in the nation.

Since the nation is increasingly focused on developing a payment reform model that shifts from payment for volume (fee for service) to payment for value (value-based payment), this new performance indicator is expected to be of great interest to insurers, public policy makers, public health, employers, and the health systems. The overarching goal, of course, is to provide high quality care at an affordable, sustainable cost. FQHCs need to be aware of and aligned with the Health Value Dashboard if we are to maintain the high regard we have historically achieved over the years. That means, besides our quality

measures and PCMH recognition, we have to demonstrate that we can achieve the desired health outcomes at a cost that is sustainable. Unfortunately, much of what we struggle with in healthcare is due to unhealthy behaviors in the population we serve – strong predictors of chronic disease, poor health and high cost of healthcare – and hard-er to get our hands around.

To get at the need to demonstrate high health value in the population we serve, we will need to significantly change the way we approach our patients and our community. We will need to become adept at changing health behavior, engaging our entire community in the effort, and allow our patients to experience the benefits of living in a community that has a focus on health. We will necessarily have to become more expansive in how we address our patients’ health needs (biopsychosocial) and in what we are trying to impact with our efforts (entire community). To be successful, we must support efforts to integrate behavioral and public health into our clinical practices, embrace team care, teach our patients to more effectively manage their own health, practice prevention, and engage in other “not practice as usual” activities in our offices. Hopefully, future funding will be better aligned with such efforts, but we can’t wait for the funding to change
before we begin moving in this direction in our FQHCs – nor do we need to...
Early efforts in this expanded role can begin now in your everyday practice as you increasingly use motivational interviewing techniques to help patients take small steps in a healthier direction, tight-en your relationships with behavioral health to improve co-management of patients, build prevention questions into every patient visit no matter what the chief com-plaint might be, and become more involved in your community to help it move in a healthier direction with safer streets and neighborhoods, safer housing, cleaner air and water, opportunities for physical activity and healthy eating, education and employment opportunities, and better community decisions and policies that affect population health.

Giving out the right blood pressure medicine alone won’t be sufficient to achieve the high value in health that we desire and our patients and communities need. With our broad geographic presence and our understanding of the factors that impact total health, FQHCs are uniquely positioned to be a major part of the solution to Ohio’s health challenges.

Let’s not miss this opportunity to lead the change that is needed!


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

2015 Clinical Quality Goals


OACHC's Quality Improvement Goals to Reach This Year


The Quality Committee and Board of OACHC has approved two areas of special focus in Quality Improvement for 2015. The target goals are to increase Colorectal Cancer Screenings and to decrease Infant Mortality.

Webinars on Colorectal Cancer Screenings:

Speaker: James Church MD, Colorectal Surgeon at the Cleveland Clinic
Speakers: OACHC's Dr. Wymyslo, Chief Medical Officer, Ashley Ballard, Director of Clinical Quality and President & CEO Randy Runyon.  

Infant Mortality Resources: 


Only 31% of Ohio FQHC patients are in compliance with colorectal cancer screenings (2013 UDS Data).   
Did you know? Everyone ages 51-74 should be getting colorectal cancer screenings.

Let's get more mothers-to-be into our health centers during their first trimester! The goal to surpass for 2015 is 71% of pregnant women versus our current 68% (2013 UDS Data).
Let's do our best to have more happy, healthy, babies! The 2015 goal is to have at least 92.2% of babies be 2,500 grams and over at birth.

Clinician's Corner: 


View more information on the 2015 Quality Improvement Goals and lots of other great information in OACHC's Clinician's Corner.