OHPI Newsletter

Vol. 2 Issue 2 HIT

IHDE on the Street

Since the start of February, the Idaho Health Data Exchange (IHDE) has conducted more than 35 clinic site visits to ensure the providers are receiving the highest value from their connection to IHDE. The site visits typically include the following:

  • Reviewing the connection build process with the clinics to learn what went well and what didn’t so IHDE can make improvements.
  • Verifying that the connections are working properly and ensuring the staff know how to access patient data from the IHDE clinical portal.
  • Providing additional training, as requested, and offering quick tips that other clinics have found beneficial to improving patient care.
  • Obtaining suggestions from clinic staff for future system functionality that would improve the IHDE services.

These visits have proven to be quite helpful for the participating SHIP clinics. Several have reported that the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document that IHDE provides is beneficial. The providers appreciated the additional training and the ability to ask questions. And IHDE has taken the constructive feedback from the clinics and has been working to improve its processes. The future functionality suggestions from the clinics are also going to be used in helping IHDE prioritize future system development.

IHDE will be continuing these site visits, with the objective of visiting all SHIP clinics well before the end of the SHIP grant.

Upcoming Events

IHC Meeting – June 13

Cohort Three PCMH Learning Collaborative – June 27-28 (See above)

Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month – June

Men’s Health Month – June

IHC Meeting – July 11

Idaho Community Health Worker (CHW) Learning Collaborative – July 25, 2018

National Immunization Awareness Month – August

IHC Meeting – August 8

SHIPworthy News

Receive up to a $2,500 reimbursement to help offset costs associated with your virtual PCMH program! The Virtual PCMH Application is now available for Cohorts One, Two, and Three Statewide Healthcare Innovation Plan (SHIP) clinics. The application closes Monday, July 9, 2018. Additional details are provided in the application.

The goal of the SHIP virtual Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) is to improve access to primary care services in rural and underserved areas through Community Health Emergency Medical Services (CHEMS), Community Health Workers (CHW), and telehealth programs. SHIP cohort clinics with at least one of these programs may apply for designation as a virtual PCMH. Designated clinics will receive up to a $2,500 reimbursement to help offset program costs.

Questions? Please email RuralHealth@dhw.idaho.gov or call the Bureau of Rural Health & Primary Care at (208)-334-0669.

Vol.2 Issue 2 Virtual PCMH

A Virtual High-Five

It’s often hard to gain perspective of what has truly been accomplished until we take two steps back and look at the big picture. There are so many moving pieces SHIP has placed into workforce development in Idaho that we can’t fully appreciate the work that’s been done at the local level. From training Community Health Workers (CHWs) to creating telehealth workflow processes in Primary Care Clinics (PCPs), a multitude of Idahoans have worked to move the Virtual PCMH model forward and keep it on track.

To date, over 75 CHWs have been trained through the Idaho State University (ISU) course. And with expertise from community organizations, 12 health specific modules have been developed to further individualized training. Throughout the state, 10 Emergency Medical Service (EMS) agencies have begun implementation of their CHEMS initiatives with guidance and partnership from the state and local levels. Despite a constantly changing healthcare landscape in Idaho, primary care SHIP clinics have established 11 telehealth pilot projects in seven clinics, a huge accomplishment in itself. One special CHEMS agency has even begun a telehealth pilot project, the first in Idaho.

With the many people who have contributed their time and efforts, we at “SHIP Central” wanted to say THANK YOU! For those involved in the Virtual PCMH initiative, we particularly want to give you a Virtual High-Five for making healthcare transformation a fun and successful process.

Vol. 2 Issue 2 PCMH

The SHIP PCMH Transformation Team has updated and enhanced the SHIP PCMH transformation portal to inform SHIP cohort clinics and to provide tools for tracking goals and activities to achieve PCMH recognition:

Three new virtual and online toolkits are now available: Clinics New to PCMH Transformation, Onboarding Employees New to PCMH Transformation, and Mentoring for Success. These toolkits are easy to access for clinics, employees, mentors, and mentees, and are designed to offer tools and resources for their PCMH transformation journey. The toolkits can be used for ongoing professional development and in curriculums for staff new to PCMH.

New features on the portal include: the Getting Started section – with Portal User Guides and quick “how to” videos on using the portal; Celebrate Success – a way for clinics to share PCMH success stories; Alert Notifications – to keep up with changes on the portal; a new Calendar feature – for clinics to list events and milestones to keep others informed and organized; and the new Discussion Forum – a collaboration site for clinics in the SHIP PCMH transformation initiative. SHIP makes available many tools and supports for helping SHIP Cohort Clinics make their PCMH transformation a journey of success! For information on the SHIP PCMH transformation portal, please contact pcmhid.team@briljent.com.


Don’t forget to register for the Cohort Three PCMH Learning Collaborative being held Wednesday, June 27 and Thursday, June 28 in Boise.

We’re expecting 160 attendees for this interactive event including SHIP Cohort Three clinic teams, Briljent and HMA, PHD and SHIP staff, and several invited guests.

Day One topics include: “PCMH Success Stories from the Field,” collecting data & patient engagement strategies from the State Evaluator Team, an IHDE presentation on the value of data & PCMH transformation, and an affinity group session on best practices of utilization of specific EHRs.

Day Two topics include: a sponsored breakfast by Blue Cross of Idaho Foundation for Health, a multi-payer panel discussion, and break-out groups aligning with PCMH principles.

Registration is through the PCMH portal until the day of the learning collaborative. Information on the venue, hotel, and parking can all be found on the portal as well.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Vol. 2, Issue 2 Administrator’s Update

Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings. ~ William Arthur Ward

The thanksgivings, joy, and blessings I feel as I transition out of my position as administrator of the Office of Healthcare Policy Initiatives leaves me feeling full of gratitude. Though nothing about this job has been common, routine, or ordinary, I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to work with the staff and stakeholders associated with SHIP and the job that has enabled me to help transition healthcare in Idaho.

The accomplishments we’ve achieved mean more than just transitioning 163 PCP clinics toward patient-centered medical homes, connecting clinics all over the state to IHDE, and improving rural patient access to PCMHs. They’ve meant engaging people all over the state to believe in this important initiative and to devote their time and energy to the work we’ve been doing for the last four years. We’ve built long-lasting relationships that will thrive long after the grant ends to sustain the initiative and continue to move it forward.

This job has been the most fulfilling, most rewarding of my 27 years in the healthcare field. I can’t think of a better way to shift to the next phase of my life than to continue helping move this important work forward in my new capacity as a retiree…while watching my grandchildren grow and playing with grand-dog, Beckett.

As this publication goes to print, the position of administrator for the Office of Healthcare Policy Initiatives was posted and has closed.  The interview team hopes to have a replacement by July 1.

I wish you all the best and thank you for the wonderful experiences SHIP has given me.

Warm regards,

Cynthia York

Vol. 2, Issue 1 Virtual PCMH

What’s Happening in 2018 With VPCMH?

With a new year comes new possibilities and many events to look forward to for the virtual PCMH program. Community Health Emergency Medical Services (CHEMS) kicked off the new year with a learning collaborative held January 17th in Boise. Several EMS agencies from throughout Idaho attended and learned not only about how to adopt CHEMS into their agencies, but WHY to adopt it into their agencies. Keynote Speaker, Matt Zavadsky, gave an inspiring and informative talk about the importance of developing economic models for communities. The CHEMS Workgroup has made it a priority for the coming year to offer tools and guidance for agencies interested in this modeling. If your agency missed out on this excellent opportunity, don’t worry! Another CHEMS learning collaborative will be held in the fall of this year.

In collaboration with Idaho State University, we’ve made a few changes to the Community Health Worker course for 2018:

  • A first-ever, in-person training will be held in the Treasure Valley in April 2018. If you’re interested in a fast-paced, informative CHW course, contact Madeline.Russell@dhw.idaho.gov for more information.
  • The viability of translating the CHW material into Spanish is being evaluated for 2018.
  • We’re also looking to coordinate efforts with the Oregon Traditional Health Worker (THW) program to cross-certify our CHW course with the State of Oregon.
  • And finally, in collaboration with the Diabetes, Heart Disease, and Stroke Prevention Program and the CHW Association, SHIP is looking at putting on the first annual CHW in-person learning collaborative in June 2018. More information to follow.

If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about CHWs or CHEMs, contact Madeline Russell at Madeline.Russell@dhw.idaho.gov or visit Idaho State University’s website.

An exciting highlight of 2018 will be the launch of Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) in March. We’re excited to work with the University of Idaho WWAMI program to implement this hub-and-spoke knowledge-sharing network here in Idaho. The first-ever Idaho ECHO hub will address the opioid crisis by expanding workforce capacity to provide best-practice specialty care and reduce health disparities in rural and underserved communities. If you’re interested in becoming a spoke, or participating in these weekly clinics, please visit https://www.uidaho.edu/academics/wwami/echo. Through the Statewide Healthcare Innovation Plan (SHIP), Idaho’s virtual PCMH program has come a long way and has much to offer participating clinics.

Vol. 2, Issue 1 HIT

IHDE on the Streets

As of December 2017, the Idaho Health Data Exchange (IHDE) has begun to reach out to SHIP clinics to ensure IHDE services are meeting clinics’ expectations and to identify clinics’ primary uses and needs for participation with IHDE. Some of the participants who have met with IHDE include CEOs, medical directors, practice managers, IT directors, nurse practitioners, and nursing staff. Some of the discussion points have included:

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Vol. 2, Issue 1 PCMH

SHIP Cohort Three officially began February 1, 2018, with a Kick-Off webinar welcoming clinics, introducing the PCMH team (Briljent, HMA, Myers and Stauffer), the Public Health Districts, the Office of Healthcare Policy Initiatives, the Idaho Health Data Exchange, the State Evaluation Team (University of Idaho and Boise State University), and explaining the grant expectations for SHIP. Next steps for Cohort Three have been updated on our SHIP website at:

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