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NCHN E-News | Issue 7 | November 16, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Online Features

+ Employment Opportunities
+ 2009 NCHN Photos

In This Issue...

From the Board of Directors
+ NCHN to Implement Network Leader Certification Program
+ NCHN Membership: Help keep our records up to date
+ NCHN Forms For-Profit Organization
+ Do More for Less with Web Conferencing!
+ 2009 Regional Meetings: Presentations

Upcoming Events
+ NRHA Rural Health Policy Institute
+ NCHN Quarterly Membership Call

News from NCHN Members
+ Health Future, LLC: Employment Opportunity
+ "Connection to Care": New CAH Video to Be Released
+ H1N1 and Emergency Preparedness Workshops

Elsewhere in the News >>
+ Doctor, Can You See Me Now?
+ New Federal Health Grant Notice
+ Covering the Uninsured in Rural Areas: Key Elements of Reform
+ The Secret to a High Impact Annual Report
+ LoneStart Holiday Poster Available!

We need your news
From the Board of Directors

NCHN to Implement Network Leader Certification Program

Professional certification, trade certification, or professional designation, often called simply certification or qualification, is a designation earned by a person to assure that he/she is qualified to perform a job or task. The certification of specialized skill-sets affirms a knowledge and experience base for practitioners in a particular field, their employers and the public at large. Certifications are usually earned from a Professional Society or Association and not the government.

NCHN is committed to developing a Network Leader Certification Program and is seeking input from members. The first step in developing a certification program is the establishment of what skills are needed to do the Network Leader's job. NCHN Members will be asked to complete a short survey that is a basic job analysis of the skills, knowledge, and tasks that are needed or must be performed on a routine basis by a Network Leader. Members will receive an email from the NCHN Certification Program Development Committee with a link to the survey within the next few days. If you do not receive the email regarding the NCHN Certification Survey or if you have questions about the survey or the Network Leader Certification Program, please contact Rebecca Davis at or Greg Dent, Chair, Certification Program Development Committee at


NCHN Membership: Are our records up to date?

NCHN is in the process of checking all membership information for accuracy. Please take a moment to visit the website and make sure that we information we have on file for you is up to date.

How to check the accuracy of your organization's information:

  1. View the Membership Map (
  2. Click on the state in which your organization is located.
  3. Click on the name of your organization
  4. View the address, phone, fax, and contact information.
  5. If you find errors, please email them to to have them corrected or simply reply to this email.

How to check the accuracy of your organization's information:

  1. Go to the Business Partners page (
  2. View the address, phone, fax, and contact information.
  3. If you find errors, please email them to to have them corrected or simply reply to this email.


NCHN Forms For-Profit Organization

NCHN recently formed “Rural Health Network Resources, LLC,” a for-profit organization solely owned and managed by NCHN.  RHNR was established in Virginia, with headquarters located in Hardinsburg, KY.  RHNR is organized to conduct any such business for which limited liability companies may be organized under the Virginia Limited Liability Company Act and all business ventures will support the mission of NCHN. RHNR’s first project is a contract with the Office of Rural Health Policy to develop a number of components that focus on rural network planning capacity and development.


Do More for Less with Web Conferencing!

Meetings are a fact of life. The work day is consumed by them and we all lose time and productivity. This increases dramatically if your meeting is out of the office and can cost you 1-2 days in lost productivity with travel. With web conferencing, these costs can be reduced and in some cases completely eliminated. NCHN is pleased to announce a new on-line meeting resource for NCHN members.  NCHN has signed a referral agreement with NTRglobal for their Meeting product. 

With NTRmeeting, you can visit board members, partners or internal team members on a more regular basis without the cost of travel. Think green when you use web conferencing, think about the benefit to the planet and the money you can save. Check out the benefits of web conferencing with the NTRmeeting program by completing the request for more info on the NCHN website.

2009 Regional Meetings: Presentations

The presentations from the 2009 Regional Meetings have been removed from the public viewing area of the website. They are accessible under the Members Only section.

To access the presentations:

  • Log in to the Members Only section
  • Go to Members Only in the left navigation area and select Documents & Minutes
  • Click on "Conference Presentations"

If you need assistance, please contact Christy Sullenberger at


Upcoming Events

NRHA Rural Health Policy Institute

Rural Health Policy InstituteWhen: January 25-27, 2010
Location: Washington, D.C.: Capital Hilton (Room Rate: $240+tax )

Registration Fee
$525 Early Bird -- Before January 8, 2010
$625 -- After January 8
$675 -- On-site

NCHN is a partner with NRHA on the Policy Institute.

>> For more information or to register, visit the NRHA website.


NCHN Quarterly Membership Call

When: Monday, December 7, 2009
Re: Discussion regarding how members are utilizing LEAN Program within their networks


News from NCHN Members

Health Future, LLC: Employment Opportunity

Health Future, LLC, is searching for an interim Vice President for our Benefits Administration business line. The position may develop into a permanent position.  The VP is responsible for effective leadership, continued growth of new clients, product enhancement and diversification, and collaboration with the HMS business line. He/she will set the strategy and lead the Benefit Administration business line in exceeding industry standards for self-funded group health medical, dental, vision, FSA, HRA and HSA plans as well as self-funded Worker’s Compensation administrative services. The VP of BA is an active participant in Health Future’s Leadership Team which establishes and monitors the overall strategic direction and success of the organization. 

Qualifications:  Master’s degree in related field preferred. Consideration may be given to equivalent experience or a combination of relevant education and experience.  Minimum of 5 years of management experience in group claims administration with TPA or insurance company. Must possess excellent written, presentation and interpersonal communication skills, and a demonstrated ability to build collaboration within the Benefits Administration Department and across the organization.

Position is located in Medford, Oregon.  If interested, please submit your resume to Lisa Seldon/Human Resources:

"Connection to Care": New CAH Video to Be Released
Reprinted from the November 2009 ICAHN - News Update (

ICAHN (Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network) will soon release the first ever video program that describes critical access hospitals (CAHs), their services and communities. Supported by grant funds, ICAHN contracted with a national communications firm, Impact Communications, Inc. to lead the development and production of this new video. Several Illinois CAHs served as the video background providing a picture of their offered services and programs along with video of activities in the rural communities. In addition, five of our CEOs shared their stories and insights as administrators. Remarks by local CAH physicians, IDPH Director Dr. Arnold, SIU leaders Deborah Seale and John Record and a community mayor were importantly included in the video. The video entitled, The Connection to Care, is 18 minutes in length and presents a realistic description of CAHs and emphasizes their value to the rural communities and continuum of healthcare. The video depicts CAHs as an attractive place to practice and that they are the necessary providers of local healthcare services and the link to expanded healthcare resources.

For information about the video, please contact the ICAHN office at 815-875-2999. Copies are expected to be available by November 23, 2009. CAHs are encouraged to share this video experience with their hospital and rural community.


H1N1 and Emergency Preparedness Workshops
Reprinted from November/December 2009 "Copper River Regional Health Network” (

The Copper River Regional Health Network (CRRHN) assisted with the coordination of a region wide H1N1 Workshop on October 15th and an Emergency Preparedness Workshop and Table Top Exercise on November 3rd and 4th at the Tazlina Hall. There were on average 15 to 25 participants from organizations throughout the Copper River Valley. Mike Bradley from Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and JD Pross from Public Health Nursing shared information regarding the H1N1 virus, the current statistics throughout the world and with in the State of Alaska.

On November 3rd and 4th Mr. Bradley returned and lead a workshop where community organizations/agencies and health care organizations/agencies discussed and reviewed emergency operations plans. On the 4th a Table Top Exercise regarding an H1N1 outbreak was conducted. The experience was invaluable for assisting the regions responders in planning for such emergencies in the future.

As a result of these workshops, beginning November 12th, the CRRHN will be conducting H1N1 Surveillance Updates in order to better monitor the status in the region. The purpose of these conferences will be to gather statistics on H1N1 symptoms, cases and concerns with health care providers throughout the region.


Spotlight on NCHN Business Partner

Paradigm Learning: Silver Level Business Partner
The Program Development Committee is pleased to announce Paradigm Learning, a Silver Level Business Partner. 

Paradigm LearningParadigm Learning designs business games and simulations that help healthcare providers better understand how their decisions impact bottom line results. Most healthcare professionals see their job as caring for patients. For many of these professionals, the cost of that care is almost an afterthought. This engaging training experience enables them to realize that outstanding patient care and good business decision-making are not mutually exclusive. All of Paradigm Learning’s training products are engaging, interactive, customizable and results oriented.

In addition to business acumen for healthcare, their simulations address:

  • Leadership Accountability
  • Talent Leadership
  • Organizational Change and Change Management
  • Project Management

Executives of NCHN's member organizations may experience the learning at their location, at no charge, through a two-hour interactive demonstration. This allows members to see for themselves how the program works, what learning takes place and how cost savings can be realized through better informed decision making.

The NCHN contact for more information is:
Tim Adler
 (p) 734.663.8599 | (c) 734.635.0309

Please join the voices of NCHN in welcoming Paradigm Learning!


Elsewhere in the News

Doctor, Can You See Me Now? More Hospitals Are Using Video to Connect Patients With Specialists Far Away, Speeding Treatment

In August, Tim Buirge suffered a stroke, leaving him unable to speak or move the right side of his face. That's when he went on TV.

At the local hospital in McCandless, Pa., where Mr. Buirge sought treatment, the 58-year-old lay in bed as a stroke specialist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, 15 miles away, watched him on a giant TV, courtesy of a video camera in Mr. Buirge's room. The diagnosis was critical, since for most stroke patients, a clot-dissolving drug received shortly after arriving at a hospital can reduce the effects of stroke and limit permanent disabilities. But the risk is that for some patients with a certain type of stroke, such a drug can actually increase bleeding in the brain and boost the chance of death.

After reviewing Mr. Buirge's vital signs and a CT scan, the stroke specialist used the remote camera to check such things as the patient's speech and eye movements and his ability to follow commands. The Pittsburgh-based doctor then recommended that the local hospital administer the drug, called tPA.

To continue reading, go to


New Federal Health Grant Notice: HHS is making $16 million available for 350 grants to fund the training of nurses.

INSIDER'S TIP:  Funding preference will go to eligible applications that will substantially benefit rural or underserved populations or those which help meet public health nursing needs in state or local health departments. Special consideration will also go to eligible applicants that agree to expend the award to train advanced education nurses who will practice in Health Professional Shortage Areas.
ELIGIBILITY: Collegiate schools of nursing, academic health centers and other private or public nonprofit entities accredited by a recognized body or bodies or state agency, approved for the purpose of nursing education by the Education Dept.;
PURPOSE:  The purpose of the  program is to provide funding for traineeships that will pay all or part of the costs of tuition, books and fees for advanced nurse education, and for reasonable living expenses during the period for which the traineeship is provided.
DEADLINES:  The application process is divided into two phases, with some application materials due Dec. 7 and others due Dec. 21.  Also, for those who have applied before, note that the FY 2010 competition has changed.

For more details on this, including contact information and other new private and federal healthcare funding opportunities, just click on or cut and paste the following link into your Web browser:


Covering the Uninsured in Rural Areas: Key Elements of Reform: Paper Identifies Reforms Needed to Ensure Rural Residents Get Health Coverage, Regardless of Geography

Rural residents of the United States have a higher uninsured rate than their urban counterparts, and therefore have the most to gain from efforts to reform the U.S. health care system. According to a new issue brief, the differences in health insurance status between those living in rural and urban areas are important to consider in the debate over national reform.

The brief, released by the Rural Policy Research Institute and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, suggests that the challenges that rural people face in obtaining health insurance are partly due to the structure of the rural economy: 64 percent of adults working in rural are employed in jobs where health insurance is provided, compared to 71 percent of their urban counterparts. At the same time, rural workers are far more likely to be self-employed. Rural businesses also pay higher premium costs than urban businesses for similar health insurance plans.

Researchers found that health reform proposals that include (i) a subsidy for individual purchase, (ii) availability of insurance plans to individuals and small groups through exchanges, and (iii) expansion of Medicaid would significantly improve coverage for rural populations. In fact, the total number of uninsured people in rural areas would decrease to 1.9 million from the current 8.1 million – leaving only 4.2 percent of rural Americans without insurance, less than the 5.9 percent projected in urban areas.

Read the brief

The Secret to a High Impact Annual Report

We nonprofits often put a great deal of time and effort into our annual reports, especially compared with how briefly most recipients will look at them.

"The annual report is a comic book," a nonprofit executive once told me. "They look at the pictures and glance at the words." The secret reality is that people do only four things with a nonprofit annual report. They:

  • Read The Letter (typically from the executive director and the board chair)
  • Check to see if they're listed (if they are a donor)
  • Read the captions on photos
  • Look at the financials to see how big you are and if you had a surplus or a deficit.

You know it's true! Yet (with the exception of The Letter) these are the areas that are often done at the last minute and without real thought.

So this year, rather than slave and anguish over the parts almost no one will read anyway, try a new approach...

First Question

Old: Which of our activities do we want to highlight?
New: What are the 2 - 5 accomplishments people would be surprised to hear that we did?

Picture Selection

Old: What pictures do we have? Who should we put in it (examples: volunteers, board members)?
New: What would be 2 - 4 great captions? What photos can we take or get that would be relevant to those captions?


Old: Let's send it to board members, funders, volunteers.
New: Let's send it to everyone who is mentioned in the annual report plus nonprofits that we work with. Plus the moms of everyone on staff.

Budget Allocation

Old: By doing a 4-page annual report that we photocopy double-sided and staple, we show how frugal we are with your money (poverty mentality).
New: By having an 8-page attractive but modest annual report, we look and feel like the kind of organization you feel comfortable giving money to (upbeat, confident mentality).

The Letter

Old: "Polite and warm" is the way to go, but sound official.
New: Get personal. Don't hold back. Share something intimate and meaningful in the letter that can give an insight into your work and/or your year. Tell the reader something that makes him or her feel like an insider.

Staff Photo

Old: Show how friendly we look / how diverse we are / how young we are / how big we are (etc.).
New: Include close-ups of individuals at various levels and at different jobs, with captions that say something about the person and accomplishments. Example: "Marisa takes the blood pressure of a young Nicaraguan immigrant -- Spanish is just one of the 11 languages we have on staff."

Final secrets: Put your annual report up on your website and spread out a hardcopy on the walls of your lobby. Have a 10 minute discussion about it at the board meeting. One way to think about the annual report is as a brochure disguised as an annual report: who should this particular brochure go to, and what responses are we trying to evoke from them?

P.S. The image at the top right of this article is from an annual report of CompassPoint Nonprofit Services: each year their report is a poster on one side and the written report on the other . . . which becomes wall art for many nonprofits for the year.

This article is reprinted with permission from Blue Avocado, an online magazine for nonprofits with practical, thought-provoking, and fun articles. Subscribe free by sending an email to or by visiting

LoneStart Holiday Poster*******

LoneStart Holiday Poster Available!

The Holiday Poster is Here! ...And the holidays are on the way. The LoneStart Wellness annual holiday poster is ready for distribution. If you would like to receive a pdf of the 11 x 17 poster with your logo included, please contact LoneStart. You will need to send your logo in a JPEG format. There's no charge and you can print and distribute as many as you like. It's a great jumpstart to a healthy, holiday season!

>> View a sample poster


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