News from Rinehart Clinic
Rinehart Clinic seeks community participation to help plan for future expansion
February, 2018: The Rinehart Clinic rents our clinic space from the Nehalem Bay Health District for $55,000 per year. As part of our budget and strategic planning process, the Rinehart Clinic Board of Directors has created a Property Development Sub-Committee. If you are interested in assisting the Clinic with planning for the expansion of our present location or in helping to develop new location possibilities, please email Brooke Hua at bhua @ rinehartclinic.org.
Rinehart Clinic granted Federal Tort Claims Act protection by the United States Health and Resources Services Administration
February, 2018: Rinehart Clinic was recently notified by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) that the clinic’s application for coverage through the Health Center Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) Program has been approved. The Health Center FTCA Program provides medical malpractice coverage at no cost for health centers that meet stringent federal guidelines.
What does this mean? The Health Center FTCA Program coverage means that Rinehart Clinic meets or exceeds all federal guidelines for quality control practices aimed at protecting patients and staff. The federal government is now Rinehart Clinic’s primary insurer, which will save the clinic potentially thousands of dollars in malpractice premiums that can be used to enhance healthcare services and programs at the clinic.
Rinehart Clinic Chief Executive Officer Marge Jozsa is pleased with the FTCA coverage. “I am so proud of the staff at Rinehart Clinic – they understand how important it is to have safety guidelines in place, and the entire team works hard to make sure they are followed.” she stated. “Having this recognized through the FTCA designation is further evidence that we are headed in the right direction.”
Helping patients successfully manage type 2 diabetes: Rinehart Clinic’s Diabetes Risk Reduction Program
January, 2018: Rinehart Clinic applauds Tillamook County Year of Wellness for its decision to focus on diabetes. The clinic’s healthcare team has long recognized the challenges patients with diabetes face and the impact the disease has on the health of the broader Tillamook County community. With roughly nine percent of Tillamook County residents diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, and nearly 33 percent of adults at risk for the disease, it merits our attention.
As the community becomes aware of the need for healthy lifestyle choices, we also need to make it easy for people to be active participants in their own health. From a patient’s perspective, the hardest step may be that first one: walking through the doors of a healthcare facility for treatment and education. The care team at Rinehart Clinic has found the single most important factor in bringing about positive change is creating a supportive environment for treatment and for group classes.
Last summer, Rinehart Clinic launched a comprehensive Diabetes Risk Reduction Program made possible by grant funding from the Columbia Pacific Coordinated Care Organization. The program helps patients make positive strides towards overcoming some of the risk factors of diabetes, including obesity and sedentary lifestyles. The clinic holds a variety of healthy lifestyle classes throughout the seasons, shying away from traditional lecture-style trainings, and opting instead for informal and interactive conversations that are often driven by the participants themselves.
To help make it easier for patients to participate, the clinic offers incentives for patients who join in the programs. This past year, the clinic’s weight loss/walking group members received pedometers, healthy eating class participants went home with fresh vegetables each week, and many class members received vouchers for free fitness and aquatics classes at North County Recreation District.
The program has been in place since mid-2017 and the clinic is already seeing positive outcomes for participating patients: lowered blood sugar numbers (A1C), lower blood pressure, healthier eating habits, and even weight loss.
Rinehart Clinic’s class lineup includes:
- A Weighty Discussion series, which offers an informal conversation around healthy eating and weight loss. Some of the participants also joined in a weekly walking group during the summer months.
- The popular Art of Eating class, where patients learn how to increase the use of vegetables in their diets in healthy and creative ways.
- Living Well with Diabetes, which offers supportive tools to help patients manage diabetes and pre-diabetes conditions.
Several community partners who believe in the importance of a healthy community have rallied behind Rinehart Clinic’s Diabetes Risk Reduction Program:
- North County Recreation District, which provides fitness and aquatics passes for patients to help them become more physically active.
- Moon River Farms, a local organic farm that provides shares of vegetables through its Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program for the Art of Eating classes.
- Manzanita Farmers Market offers participating patients vouchers for free fruits and vegetables at the market throughout the summer and fall program.
- Manzanita Grocery and Deli, long known for its commitment to the well-being of the community, is also offering a voucher program to provide fresh produce in winter when the local farms are not producing.
All of these programs and resources will continue at Rinehart Clinic throughout 2018. For information on upcoming class sessions, stay tuned to www.rinehartclinic.org. For more information on Rinehart Clinic's Diabetic Risk Reduction program, contact the clinic's Quality Director at 1-800-368-5182, Ext. 172.
Rinehart Clinic launches Care to Chat healthcare discussion series
December, 2017: On Thursday, December 14, 2017, Rinehart Clinic kicked off its “Care to Chat” healthcare discussions, an ongoing series covering a variety of topics and featuring healthcare providers and other staff from Rinehart Clinic and Pharmacy.
The initial Care to Chat program focused on handling grief during the holidays, with discussion guided by Rinehart Clinic’s Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Terra Marzano and Sara Todd.
The Care to Chat discussion series is free and open to everyone. Upcoming topics will include Lyme disease, colorectal cancer, medication management, and when to go to the emergency room (versus when to call your primary healthcare provider). These “chats” will be held every other month at the library in Manzanita. For information on future sessions, look for fliers around the North County area or visit our website or Facebook page (www.facebook.com/rinehartclinic).
Grant funding helps Rinehart Clinic pursue its goal of improving overall health of the community
October 24, 2017: Over the last two years, Rinehart Clinic has successfully pursued several grant funding opportunities aimed at improving the overall health of the community by addressing specific health-related needs of North Oregon Coast residents.
The grant-funded programs Rinehart Clinic has launched reflect our belief that a community is made healthy by the hard work and dedication of its individual members. These programs focus on: reaching residents currently not accessing healthcare or who need assistance finding insurance coverage; helping patients with diabetes manage their health challenges; and an expansion of mental health services, including substance abuse treatment.
- ¡Soy Sano!/I’m Healthy Grant – Rinehart Clinic received $71,803 in funding from Oregon Health Authority to help connect children and teens (birth to age 18) to free health care services if they do not qualify for state or federal health insurance programs.
The Oregon Health Authority recently announced that children who are signed up for the ¡Soy Sano! program before December 31, 2017 will be covered automatically for 2018 under Oregon’s “Cover All Kids” legislation passed in July. This could impact an estimated 17,000 children and teens in Oregon.
Over the course of the last year, Rinehart Clinic staff has taken the ¡Soy Sano! mission seriously. The clinic now has a full-service Spanish-speaking staff, from the front desk to our Family Nurse Practitioner. We have broadened our outreach in Tillamook and South Clatsop counties in the hopes of ensuring that every child who needs healthcare is receiving it.
- Diabetes Risk Reduction Grant – Received $77,650 from the Columbia Pacific Coordinated Care Organization to launch a comprehensive diabetes risk reduction program in North Tillamook County aimed at reducing some of the barriers faced by residents with uncontrolled diabetes. Statistics indicate that nearly 33 percent of adults in Tillamook County are at risk for Type 2 Diabetes.
Education about healthy lifestyle choices is important, but we have found the most important factor in bringing about positive change is creating a supportive group environment for all our classes. The program has been under way since mid-summer and the clinic is already seeing positive outcomes in terms of lowered blood sugar (A1C) numbers in some of its patients.
This grant request included funding for community partners, which has allowed the clinic to engage a variety of outside resources to help patients take control of their own health and make positive strides to overcome some of the risk factors of diabetes (obesity and sedentary lifestyles).
Our grant partners include:
- North County Recreation District, which is participating with fitness and aquatics passes for patients to help them become more physically active.
- Moon River Farms, a local organic farm that provided a 22-week share of vegetables through its Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. The farm-fresh vegetables are distributed to patients who attend the group classes and are also used in the clinic’s popular “Art of Eating” workshops that introduce healthy and creative ways to increase the use of vegetables in our patients’ diets.
- Manzanita Farmers Market, which is participating with a voucher program that offered patients free fruits and vegetables throughout the summer and fall at the weekly market.
- Manzanita Grocery and Deli, a local business long known for its commitment to the well-being of the community, is participating in a patient voucher program to provide fresh produce in winter when the local farms are not producing.
Starting next month (November 7 – December 12) Rinehart Clinic will launch free a “Living Well with Diabetes” workshop series at the North County Recreation District. Community members interested in participating can call 1-800-368-5182, Ext. 101 to learn more or to register.
- Community Partner Grant – Received $50,000 from Oregon Health Authority and the Department of Consumer and Business Services to help Oregonians of all income levels access public and private health insurance. The focus of this grant is to help residents eligible for Medicaid and/or Medicare understand the coverage available to them and to provide them assistance in the application process.
The funding has covered training and certification for Rinehart Clinic staff and allowed for broad outreach to make sure residents are aware of the insurance coverage and other resources available to them. With a shortened open enrollment period of November 1 through December 15, we are committed to informing the community of insurance options. These services are available to everyone – residents do not need to be a Rinehart Clinic patient to take advantage of these free resources.
- Mental Health and Substance Abuse Grant – Awarded $175,700 from the Health Resources and Services Administration to expand mental health services and substance abuse services focused on treatment, prevention, and awareness of opioid abuse. The clinic healthcare team has worked diligently with the Columbia Pacific Coordinated Care Organization to follow state guidelines and implement best practices related to pain management. This grant allows the clinic to redouble its efforts to provide alternatives to opioid pain medicines and to provide resources that help support community members in their recovery from the disease of addiction.
Mental health is a critical component in the overall health of a community. In North Tillamook County, the nearest outpatient mental health and/or addictions provider is over 25 miles away. Income and transportation limitations often present barriers for patients in our service area and limited staffing at Rinehart Clinic has made it challenging for us to offer the treatment necessary locally. This funding has allowed us to hire an additional full-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker and launch new programs to help address the treatment gap in the North County communities, allowing patients to access primary care and mental health services all in the same location.
The focus of these treatment programs includes untreated and long-standing mental health issues associated with post-traumatic stress, depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders. It also targets adults with opioid use disorders, including those with opioid prescriptions for chronic pain.
Earlier this year, Rinehart Clinic launched a Medically-Assisted Treatment (MAT) program, with the support of local law enforcement agencies and other community partners. The MAT program offers non-addictive alternatives with heavy treatment therapies such as group classes, one-on-one counseling for outpatient addiction services.
Rinehart Clinic’s Chief Executive Officer, Marge Jozsa, is enthused about the new and enhanced programs made possible by these various grants. “We are grateful for the financial support provided by these grants and we look forward to sharing additional success stories as these programs become part of the clinic’s overall healthcare offerings.”
Rinehart Clinic’s hope is that the additional programs made possible by this grant funding will have far-reaching impacts. In healthcare, we know that a variety of factors contribute to a community’s health. If the individual residents are taking steps to improve their health, their communities are positively impacted, and ultimately so is the entire region.
Rinehart Clinic receives Tier 4 Status as a Patient-Centered Primary Care Clinic
May, 2017: The Rinehart Clinic has been awarded Tier 4 status by the Oregon Health Authority as a Patient-Centered Primary Care Home.
Patient-Centered Primary Care Home is a health care clinic that has been recognized for its commitment to patient-centered care – care where the patient is the most important part of his or her own care.
The Oregon Health Authority has a five-tier system for rating the standards of care for patient-centered clinics based on these core attributes:
- Access to Care – The clinic helps patients get the care they need, when they need it;
- Accountability – Recognized clinics are responsible for making sure patients receive the best possible care;
- Comprehensive – The clinic’s patients get the care, information, and services they need;
- Continuity – The clinic works with its patients and the community to improve patient and population health over time;
- Coordination and integration – The clinic helps patients navigate the system to meet the patients’ needs in a safe and timely way;
- Patient and family-centered – The clinic recognizes that patients are the most important members of the health care team and that they are ultimately responsible for their overall health and wellness.
Over the course of the past year, the health care team at Rinehart Clinic has worked to improve its patient-centered measures. To receive Tier 4 designation, the clinic passed all standards and improved its scores on every one of the core attributes listed above.
“I am incredibly proud of our care team,” said Rinehart Clinic Chief Executive Officer Marge Jozsa. “We have worked hard to build a strong team-based approach – and our patients are an important part of the team! This Tier 4 designation is evidence that our hard work is paying off.”