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 Apr. 1, 2013

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Happy Anniversary!
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed just three short years ago and was met with great fanfare by some and great chagrin by others. As we move toward full ACA implementation in 2014, we do indeed have cause to celebrate but also a great deal to think about as maternal and child health (MCH) leaders, [more]


Budget Update FY 2014
Last weekend, the U.S. Senate adopted a FY 2014 budget resolution (S.Con Res 8). This non-binding resolution will guide spending decisions for the upcoming fiscal year. Importantly, this resolution calls for long-term reductions in spending and sets the overall funding level for discretionary spending. The House resolution is considerably different from the Senate version because it calls for the repeal of health reform, restructuring programs and shifts responsibility of sequestration to non defense discretionary programs. [more]

Prevention and Public Health Fund? FY 2013
Are you wondering what programs the Prevention and Public Health Fund (PPHF) will be supporting in FY 2013? If you are, you are not alone. The FY 2013 Continuing Resolution did not indicate congressional priorities for allocating PPHF dollars, which means that the administration has the authority to allocate funding for their priorities. Rumors are rampant in Washington, DC that the administration plans on using the fund to pay for some of the Affordable Care Act initiatives, like the health insurance exchanges. [more]

Sequestration FY 2013
Our members and partners continue to express frustration about the lack of information regarding implementation of sequestration. As a result, AMCHP sent an organizational sign-on letter with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) affiliate group encouraging the administration to expedite and facilitate communication about sequestration between the department project officers and their partners in state and local government. This letter emphasizes that even if all that can be shared at this point is estimated timelines for notification that would be helpful. This letter also requests that HHS advise when additional information is expected to be available about sequestration. [more]

Sequestration FY 2013 and Beyond
Last week, President Obama signed legislation solidifying sequestration for FY 2013. It is important to remember that unless Congress acts to change the current law, the automatic procedures for reducing discretionary spending will be carried out by lowering the caps on discretionary budget authority. This means that across the board spending reductions may not happen in FY 2014, however, the appropriations committee could target specific programs for elimination or deep cuts in order to meet the tight budget caps. [more]

Health Reform Implementation

CMS Informational Bulletin on Mental Health and EPSDT
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released an Informational Bulletin on Prevention and Early Identification of Mental Health and Substance Use Conditions in Children on Mar. 27 “to help inform states about resources available to help them meet the needs of children under EPSDT, specifically with respect to mental health and substance use disorder services.” AMCHP member Phyllis Sloyer from Florida and AMCHP staff Karen VanLandeghem participated in the National Early Periodic Screening, [more]

Maryland Passes Health Benefits Exchange Legislation
On Mar. 27, the Maryland General Assembly passed legislation that expands Medicaid eligibility, but also includes a unique feature; the ability for a consumer to continue previously authorized treatment on a new health insurance plan. The inclusion of this language in the law is a huge win for those concerned about continuity of care for consumers who might shift between health plans if their life situation changes. This is especially important for pregnant women who might change between a private health insurance plan and Medicaid when she becomes pregnant. [more]

Third Anniversary of Affordable Care Act
Mar. 23 marks the third anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. HHS provided analysis, on how many Americans are receiving preventive services coverage without co-pay (71 million), as well as other resources including a consumer education video , state-by-state fact sheets, and information on various populations and how the health care law will impact them. As always, stay tuned to AMCHP publications for the latest updates on the Affordable Care Act. [more]

National Stakeholder Call on the Health Insurance Marketplace
On Mar. 18, CMS held a national call on the Health Insurance Marketplace (aka Health Insurance Exchange). The purpose of the call was to update stakeholders on the implementation of the marketplace and allow CMS to interact directly with stakeholders. CMS will be holding quarterly stakeholder calls beginning the last week of April 2013 for those states that will have a federally facilitated or state partnership marketplace. [more]

Benchmark Health Plan Analysis
As part of the Affordable Care Act, states were required to either select or default to a benchmark health insurance plan as a reference for the essential health benefits. On Mar. 12, the Commonwealth Fund released a report analyzing the benchmark plans in 24 states and the District of Columbia. The issue brief examines how state leaders made their selection and what decisions were made given the timeline for implementation, which stakeholders were engaged and many more issues they encountered. [more]



Notice of April Board Meeting
The AMCHP Board of Directors will be meeting via teleconference on Apr. 11, 2013. Board meetings are open and all are invited to listen in to board deliberations. If you would like to join the meeting, we ask that you let Nora Lam, executive assistant, know of your intention to participation so we can accommodate you during the call and share the dial-in numbers. [more] 

Get Social with AMCHP for Autism Awareness Month
During the month of April, AMCHP will celebrate Autism awareness month by focusing on Autism and Developmental Disabilities with a special emphasis on data and technology. We want to hear your voice. Post your resources to our Facebook page and join the conversation on Twitter! [more] 

APHL Webinar to Introduce NewSTEPS Project
The Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) will host a webinar to introduce its Newborn Screening Technical assistance and Evaluation Program (NewSTEPS) to newborn screening partners and stakeholders. NewSTEPs is a national newborn screening project designed to provide data, technical assistance, and training to newborn screening programs across the country and assist states with quality improvement initiatives. [more]

Linked by Life Webinar
The Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) is offering a webinar, Linked by Life: The Case for Collaboration of MCH and Chronic Disease to Improve Infant and Women's Health, on Tuesday, Apr. 2 at 3 p.m. EST. Presenters will explore the interplay between chronic disease and maternal and child health work including a discussion about strategic collaborations and funding opportunities that support linking throughout the life course. [more]

April MCH EPI Grand Rounds on Medical Homes and Racial Disparities
CDC will present Does Receiving Care in a Medical Home Mediate the Racial Disparity in Unmet Healthcare Needs among Children with Special Healthcare Needs? via webcast on Apr. 3 at 2 p.m. EST. The webinar will present research focused on racial disparities research using data from the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health to explore whether and to what extent differential access to a medical home explains the black-white disparity in unmet health care needs among children with special health care need (CSHCN) in the United States. [more]

MIECHV Grantees Asked to Complete Needs Assessment by April 5
The MIECHV Technical Assistance Coordinating Center (TACC) is seeking feedback from MIECHV grantees to identify your technical assistance (TA) priorities for the current fiscal year. The TACC can design TA to meet an array of needs, from basic TA focused on assisting you in meeting MIECHV requirements, to TA focused on moving well-functioning systems even further forward. Click here to view the online survey. [more]

Application Deadline Approaching for 2014 APHA Public Health Fellowship in Government
The American Public Health Association (APHA) announces a call for applications for the APHA Public Health Fellowship in Government. APHA is looking for candidates with strong public health credentials who wish to spend one-year in Washington, D.C. working in a congressional office on legislative and policy issues such as health, environment, and other public health concerns. The fellow will have the option of serving on the staff of a member of Congress or a congressional committee. [more]

Children’s Safety Network Webinar on Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Among Teens and Young Adults
This webinar will explore the available research on rates of co-morbidity between prescription drug use and other psychiatric disorders (major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, eating disorders and schizophrenia) as well as offer a clinical perspective in working with these problems with teens and young adults. The webinar is intended for professionals in counseling roles and community prevention workers working with this population. [more]

Preconception Health Program Implementation Webinar
The March of Dimes in partnership with Middle Tennessee State University Center For Health and Human Services and Every Woman Southeast will present a webinar, “Did U Know? What’s Good 4 U is Good 4 Ur Future Baby” -- Implementing a Preconception Health Campaign on Your College Campus or with Your Community Group on Apr. 15 at 11 a.m. EST. [more]

Environmental Tracking Webinar
Save the date! On Apr. 16 at 2 p.m. EST, AMCHP, APHA and CDC will host an informational webinar on the CDC National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (Tracking Network) featuring Dr. Ekta Choudhary. The Tracking Network is a system of integrated health, exposure, and hazard information and data from a variety of national, state, and city sources. It is a one-of-a-kind website that brings together information that cannot be found, or is hard to find, anywhere else. [more]

Call For Abstracts: Use of Linked Data and Innovative Approaches by MCH Epidemiologists
The Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CTSE) is calling for abstracts for the MCH symposium taking place on Jun. 9 at the 2013 CTSE annual conference. The symposium will feature three 90-minute sessions that spotlight current innovations in the use of data by MCH epidemiologists. CTSE is requesting abstract submissions focused on examples from the field of using linked data and innovative methodological approaches to increase the information available for making program and policy decisions. [more]

Forecasted Grant Opportunity: Responsible Fatherhood Research Network
The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is planning to issue a funding announcement in late May for the establishment of a Responsible Fatherhood Research Network. The purpose of the award is to build research and practice knowledge and capacity to lead and support further development and evaluation of evidence or theory-based interventions to increase positive father involvement in the lives of their children and increase collaboration, knowledge sharing and capacity building among investigators and practitioners. [more]

To see more ways to get involved, click here.



General Maternal and Child Health

AAP Launches Genetics in Primary Care Institute Website
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has launched a website dedicated to the Genetics in Primary Institute. The institute works to increase primary care provider (PCP) knowledge and skills in providing genetic-based services. The new website is a clearinghouse for practical tools and information for primary care providers regarding genetics and genomics, genetic testing, family history, genetic counseling, and patient communication. [more]

MCHB Releases Toolkit to Support Families Experiencing Intimate Partner Violence and Perinatal Depression
A Comprehensive Approach for Community-Based Programs to Address Intimate Partner Violence and Perinatal Depression highlights strategies and provides resources to help organizations address intimate partner violence and perinatal depression within their own communities. The toolkit, published by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) MCHB, comprises eight sections. [more]

NICHQ Toolkit on Creating Patient and Family Advisory Councils
The National Initiative for Children's Healthcare Quality (NICHQ) has created a toolkit for pediatric providers on how to effectively engage family perspectives by creating patient and family advisory councils. As the “customers” of the practice, patients and families bring experience and expertise that can help enhance service delivery and improve overall quality. [more]

Child Health

Pediatrics Study Finds No Association between Autism and “Too Many Vaccines Too Soon”
The Mar. 29 issue of the Journal of Pediatrics featured a study: “Increasing Exposure to Antibody-stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines is Not Associated with Risk of Autism.” The study was the first to explore a concern some have about the number of vaccines children receive in a single day or over the course of their first two years of life and a potential association between “too many vaccines too soon” and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). [more]

Infant Health

AMCHP and Partners Release New Issue Brief on NICU Follow-up
AMCHP has developed a new issue brief in partnership with MedImmune entitled Partnering to Promote Follow-Up Care for Premature Infants. The issue brief addresses the importance of neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) follow-up in premature infants by presenting five states that have successfully implemented NICU transition programs. [more]



  • On Mar. 18, AMCHP CEO Michael Fraser and AMCHP staff Brent Ewig and Lacy Fehrenbach met with several key leaders at MCHB, including David Heppel, director of the Division of Child and Adolescent Health, and Trina Anglin, director of adolescent health; Judith Theirry, branch chief in the Division of Home Visiting and Early Childhood Systems; Hani Atrash, director of the Division of Healthy Start and Perinatal Services and David de la Cruz, deputy director of that division; and Bonnie Strickland, director of the Division for Children with Special Health Care Needs. Mike, Brent and Lacy discussed potential impacts of the sequester to state MCH programs, and how AMCHP and HRSA can work together to support Title V programs to improve adolescent health, implement home visiting, reduce infant mortality, and improve health and services for children and youth with special health care needs, respectively, as we move forward with Affordable Care Act implementation and approach 2014.
  • On Mar. 19-21, AMCHP staff Caroline Stampfel and Megan Phillippi assisted in the facilitation of small group work at the Maternal Mortality Initiative meeting sponsored by the CDC Division of Reproductive Health. AMCHP CEO Mike Fraser provided partnership updates at the opening day of the meeting regarding AMCHP efforts to break down public health silos and the focus on life course in improving maternal health outcomes. The goal of the Maternal Mortality Initiative is to develop recommendations and standards to strengthen existing and guide new maternal death review processes. This meeting covered the review process: panel composition (members), information used for the summary, the case review process, making recommendations, and translation into actions. Participants met in their topic specific subgroups with members from state and city teams. In addition, state and city team leads shared best practices and lessons learned from working with their reviews
  • On Mar. 20, AMCHP staff Lacy Fehrenbach participated in the inaugural meeting of the National Advisory Committee to the National Center for the Review and Prevention of Child Deaths. The advisory committee developed a blueprint for action to leverage partnerships with and expertise of the organizations represented on the committee to translate child death review data to action that prevents future child deaths.
  • On Mar. 21-22, AMCHP staff participated in the MCHB Region V Infant Mortality Summit in Chicago, IL. AMCHP staff Lacy Fehrenbach, Piia Hanson and Kate Howe facilitated state work group meetings and provided onsite meeting support and logistics. AMCHP CEO Mike Fraser delivered an opening plenary talk. The summit served as the launching point for a collaborative and multi-state initiative that aims to improve infant health outcomes and to reduce infant mortality and prematurity across the nation, particularly among disparate populations. AMCHP members from Regions V participated on state teams to identify strategies and outcomes to reduce infant mortality in their states, and share best practices, challenges and lessons learned.
  • On Mar. 27. AMCHP staff Lacy Fehrenbach and Kate Howe represented AMCHP on the ASTHO Tobacco Issues Forum. Currently, the forum is finalizing an issue brief focused on smoking cessation before, during, and after pregnancy and exploring opportunities to comment to the Food and Drug Administration on the need to prohibit menthol as a characterizing flavor for cigarettes.
  • On Mar. 27, AMCHP staff Julio Arguello Jr. hosted a webinar with partners on Social Media 101. The purpose of this webinar was to help State Public Health Autism Resource Center (SPHARC) grantees understand the basics of Social Media and provide a step by step demonstration on how to set up a Facebook and Twitter profile. 

To see more of what AMCHP is doing on your behalf, click here.


New Mexico Department of Health Seeks Family Health Bureau Chief
This position is responsible for providing Public Health leadership and direction of Family Health Bureau/PHD (FHB) staff in core public health functions and services in the context of Department strategic plans, which include; Women, Infants and Children (WIC), Family Planning, Children's Medical Services, Prenatal Case Management, Epidemiology, Maternal Health, Child Health, Commodities Supplemental Food, and Farmers Market programs. It will serve as the Title V Director for the MCH Block Grant and work closely with the Medical Director and program managers, providing leadership, direction, and oversight of all program activities in public health offices, contractor sites, warehouses, and farmers markets statewide. [more]

AMCHP Opening: Organizational Performance & Member Services Intern
As a member of the Organizational Performance and Member Services team, the intern supports our member services and communications activities. The intern will assume responsibility for a wide range of projects and functions, requiring professionalism and task orientation. [more]

The Career Center is the premiere online job board for individuals seeking employment in Maternal and Child Health programs. Whether you are looking for an entry-level position or are a more seasoned professional looking for new opportunities, AMCHP's Career Center has great openings for great people! Searching our database is free and open to all job-seekers. AMCHP members receive a discount on job postings -- so sign up today!



HRSA Oral Health Workforce Grant
Deadline: Apr. 3
This announcement solicits applications for the Grants to States to Support Oral Health Workforce Activities Program. The purpose of this program is to help states develop and implement innovative programs to address the dental workforce needs of designated dental health professional shortage areas in a manner that is appropriate to the states’ individual needs. Applications for this program should describe innovative approaches to addressing and measuring oral health workforce needs at the state level. [more]

Emergency Medical Services for Children Targeted Issues Demonstration Projects
Deadline: Apr. 9
The funding announcement for the Targeted Issues grants is intended to invite applications that will improve the care provided by Emergency Medical Services providers for critically ill and injured children. Applicants should address specific needs in the field of pre-hospital pediatric emergency care that transcend State boundaries. There will be two categories of grants (see details below). Category I projects will demonstrate the establishment of an infrastructure for pediatric Prehospital research. Category II projects will improve pediatric pre-hospital research. [more]

Funds for Support for Expectant and Parenting Teens, Women, Fathers and Their Families
Deadline: Apr. 10
This notice solicits applications from states, which include the District of Columbia, any commonwealth, possession, or other territory of the United States and any federally-recognized Indian tribe or reservation, for the development and implementation of programs for expectant and parenting teens, women, fathers and their families. [more]

CDC NCCDPHP Cooperative Agreement Announcement
Deadline: Apr. 19, Letter of Intent due Mar. 19
CDC and the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP) announces the availability of FY 2013 funds to implement State Public Health Actions to Prevent and Control Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity and Associated Risk Factors and Promote School Health. [more]

CDC State Public Health Actions to Prevent and Control Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity and Associated Risk Factors and Promote School Health Grant
Deadline: Apr. 19, Letter of Intent due Mar. 19
This State Public Health Actions to Prevent and Control Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity and Associated Risk Factors and Promote School Health announcement outlines an approach to preventing and reducing the risk factors associated with childhood and adult obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke; it also addresses management of these chronic diseases. [more]

For more funding opportunities, click here.



Click here to see the AMCHP MCH Events Calendar.