Jan Johnson

$20 Million in Funding for Mental Health Housing Available

Oregon Housing and Community Services is now accepting proposals for $20 million in state funds to develop mental health and substance use housing across Oregon.

Affordable housing is in short supply particularly for people living with mental illness and addictions. The $20 million boost can definitely make a difference.

Doctors and Payers Should Guide Healthcare Quality, Payment Reform

Pittsburgh expert tells the Oregon Health Forum audience that fundamental reform is needed not from health plans and health systems but from providers and purchases working together directly with Q Corp data.

There’s little incentive for insurers to support payment reform, according to Harold Miller, president and CEO of the Center for Healthcare Quality and Payment Reform, So it’s time that providers and purchasers work together with a neutral community facilitator like the Oregon Health Care Quality

Public Health to seek $30 million for Modernization in 2017-2019 biennium

An unprecedented assessment of where Oregon’s public health system is now and where it hopes to be to support a truly modern system shows an actual gap of $105 million.

A report due to the Legislature Fiscal Office June 30 will start with a recommendation to fund a $30 million first phase of modernization focused on communicable disease and environmental health programs to combat air toxins and lead in the water.

Provider Billing Most Common Fraud but PhRMA Biggest Ticket

Medicaid spends $6 billion a year in Oregon alone and “whenever there is that big a pile of money, there is going to be fraud,” Rodney Hopkinson, attorney in charge and director of the Medicaid Fraud Unit for the Oregon Department of Justice told a City Club of Portland audience.

The state’s Medicaid fraud unit covers 81,000 Medicaid providers including doctors, nurses, dentists, hospitals, nursing homes, pharmacies, durable medical equipment suppliers, home care workers, medical transport companies – any facility receiving Medicaid funds even if the victim is not a Medic

Keeping Mentally Ill Out of Crisis

Once the Unity Center opens later this year, people in crisis will have a calmer, more patient-focused option for care – possibly starting with a ride in an ambulance rather than a police car.

Describing a friend in crisis who spent more than 40 hours without care in an emergency room waiting for an inpatient psychiatric bed to open, Jason Renaud, founder of the Mental Health Association of Portland, says the system has “lost trust.”

Filmmaker Lauds Oregon’s Health Information Exchange Efforts, Encourages Statewide Adoption

A screening of Dr. Kevin Johnson of Vanderbilt University’s documentary, No Matter Where: The Quest to Use Technology to Connect Healthcare, hosted by the Department of Medical Informatics & Clinical Epidemiology at Oregon Health & Science University, showcases barriers, hard-won successes on the journey to build and use electronic highways for healthcare information.

The documentary by Dr. Kevin Johnson highlights how 200,000 deaths each year result from misinformation or no information, and how a quarter of healthcare spending is unneeded with duplicate testing expensive and sometimes dangerous.

Health Share Soon to Begin Offering Alternative Treatment for Back Pain

Racism, discrimination and stigma emerge as Health Share’s community advisory council’s top priority in the Healthy Columbia Willamette Collaborative Assessment.

Three new benefits will be available to Oregon Health Plan members on July 1 -- dentures, alternative treatments for back pain and a new treatment to prevent autistic children from harming themselves.

Tobacco Reduction Advisory Committee eyes California’s proposed $2 tobacco tax

After playing mostly defense during Oregon’s 2016 legislative session to stop tobacco industry efforts to prevent communities from enacting their own efforts to curb tobacco use, the committee now is watching California’s efforts to raise taxes on tobacco and e-cigarettes.

David Hopkins of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is “optimistic” that California’s tobacco tax on the November ballot will be successful because the last attempt, in 2012, only narrowly failed. California’s tobacco tax now is just half the national average.

Public Health Advisory Board Required to Make Budget Request by June

But health officials want to flesh out a compelling vision and plans for sharing resources together with setting a dollar amount to fund public health modernization.

Public health officials have a newly defined set of foundational goals and even tools to see how far they are now from hitting them -- including a calculator for needed dollar amounts to plug into the state’s budget cycle starting this June.

Pharmacies, Assisted Living, Dialysis Centers on Patient Commission’s To Do List

Rebecca “Gwen” Cox replaces the commission’s current executive director Bethany Walmsley on May 9. The outgoing leader bid farewell to her board with her perspective on “the state of the state” in patient safety -- including areas that need more attention.

Pharmacies and transitional medication management are among the next priorities of the new executive director of the Oregon Patient Safety Commission, Rebecca “Gwen” Cox, told The Lund Report.

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