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Michigan Council for Maternal & Child Health Friday Notes

Posted over 2 years ago by Rachel VanDenBrink

February 27, 2015
Advocacy Alert: Home Visiting Day of Action March 3
Maternal and child health advocates are asked to contact members of Congress next week and urge them to reauthorize and extend funding for the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (MIECHV).

Congress created the MIECHV program in 2010 to improve health and developmental outcomes for children and families in vulnerable communities through the implementation of evidence-based voluntary home visiting programs. The original authorization provided $1.5 billion for fiscal years 2010 - 2014. Last year, MIECHV was successfully extended through March 31, 2015 with $400 million as part of a large bill to address the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), or "doc fix". Congress is again considering the SGR bill, and we are hopeful that it will include reauthorizations for MIECHV and other critical programs known as "health extenders."

We need you to participate in a national Home Visiting Day of Action on Tuesday, March 3. Please take a moment to call your members of Congress and ask them to support MIECHV. Then join thousands of advocates across the country on social media to share the value of home visiting for families and why we must reauthorize MIECHV.

Please call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to be connected to your member of Congress (or you can look up the names and phone numbers of your senators and representative online). Once you're connected, please identify yourself as a constituent and ask to speak to the health legislative assistant.

Help us draw attention to MIECHV on March 3 by making it a trending topic on Twitter. Between 1:30-2:30pm Eastern Time, send tweets to your Members of Congress using the #HomeVisiting hashtag. (Look up the Twitter handles for your Senators and Representative.)

Some sample tweets:

#HomeVisiting is working for children and families. Reauthorize MIECHV now! @SENATOR/REPRESENTATIVE
Invest in stronger families & communities in Michigan. Reauthorize #HomeVisiting! @SENATOR/REPRESENTATIVE
#HomeVisiting programs are making a difference for families. Invest in Michigan's future! Reauthorize MIECHV @SENATOR/REPRESENTATIVE
Want government that works, @SENATOR/REPRESENTATIVE? Lead the charge to extend evidence-backed #HomeVisiting.
Republicans & Democrats support evidence-backed voluntary #HomeVisiting. @SENATOR/REPRESENTATIVE, will you protect it?
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Legislators Discuss DCH-DHS Merger
Legislators from four different committees between the House and Senate had many questions during a presentation on the planned merger of the Department of Community Health and Department of Human Services given by Director Nick Lyon, currently heading both departments.

"Bigger is not always better when it comes to government," Sen. Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake), who sits on the Senate Appropriations DCH Subcommittee, said. "I can see the pathway, but ... right now I'm not an advocate. I'm not opposed, but I'm not an advocate."

He was joined in that sentiment by a handful of other legislators, including Sen. John Proos (R-St. Joseph), who sits on the Senate Appropriations DHS Subcommittee.

The Legislature could reject the merger with majority votes in both the House and Senate although that seems highly unlikely.

Lyon assured, "consolidating is not getting bigger," and reiterated the ultimate goal of the to-be department is consolidating services in a way that helps individuals on the path to helping themselves.

Among those priorities, Lyon said in his presentation, is to interrupt generational poverty and support families and individuals on their road to self-sufficiency; ensure the safety, well-being and permanency of the children, adults and elderly in state care; and improve the health of Michiganders in a cost-effective manner.

Presenting an overview of the merged departments, Lyon noted they will house several new agencies, including a Michigan's Children Agency to focus on the children effected by the modified settlement agreement in the foster care system, homeless youth, and services that protect children's health and well being.

He told the panel that he expects to measure customer service through, at least, measurements that currently exist: how people feel leaving an office, the amount of time it takes for a person to navigate the system and whether an individual felt he or she got the services necessary to be whatever it is he or she sought to become.

Rep. Henry Yanez (D-Sterling Heights), echoed other legislators with his comment, "I share the same concerns my colleagues expressed about the cost and cost-savings. The idea of merging as an efficiency tool is ideal, but I have to be honest that your presentation has left me a little wanting. It seems to me the success of this merger is a lot of hopes and wishes and wants."
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Senate Passes Negative Supplemental Bills
The Senate voted Thursday to give final passage and send to Governor Rick Snyder a pair of bills balancing the current fiscal year 2014-15 budget through fund shifts and cuts to state agencies.

HB 4110, which allocates money from the School Aid Fund to community colleges, saving what would have been a major General Fund expense, was sent to the governor on a 23-14 vote, and HB 4112, which cuts money from state agencies and departments as well as shifting funds, passed 26-11.

On HB 4110, four Republicans - Sen. Patrick Colbeck of Canton Township, Sen. Rick Jones of Grand Ledge, Sen. Tory Rocca of Sterling Heights and Sen. Dale Zorn of Ida - joined all Democrats present in opposition. Sen. Coleman Young II (D-Detroit) was absent. On HB 4112, Sen. David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights) joined Republicans in support while Sen. Jones and Sen. Rocca voted no.
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Great Start Expansion, Progress Discussed in Committee
The Great Start Readiness Program is not yet reaching its entire targeted student base, so the state should be cautious in expanding to new age groups, Susan Broman, director of the Office of Great Start, told the Senate Appropriations K-12 School Aid and Education Subcommittee Wednesday.

Sen. Goeff Hansen (R-Hart), chair of the subcommittee, broached the idea of expanding the program to serve at-risk 3-year-olds as well as the current 4-year-olds.

Broman noted that program is using all of the slots currently allocated and is reaching about 90 percent of the targeted group: four-year-olds living at or below 200 percent of poverty.

"One of the things that (is) of concern is that we are serving all of the 4-year-olds," Broman said. "I would be fine looking at possibly serving the 3-year-olds, but not at the expense of serving the 4-year-olds."

The program did, though, ramp up quickly to use the additional funds in the 2013-14 and 2014-15 budgets intended to ensure slots for all eligible children.

She said the program not only expanded the expectations, which was a half-day course for each child, but in many cases was able to provide full-day programs for those children.

She said ongoing studies of the program show it is increasing graduation rates for those who participate, but to questions about how it would aid with the governor's third grade reading goals, she said there are not enough assessment points between the preschool program and third grade to measure that. She said the kindergarten entrance assessment would help, but there would be no data from first grade or second grade.
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Maternal and Child Health "Bills to Watch"
A new feature of MCMCH's Friday Notes, Bills to Watch will provide a recap of introduced bills of interest to members and maternal and child health advocates.

HB 4024 NEWBORN LEAVE TIME (Kosowski) Creates Birth or Adoption Leave Act to give new parents 4 weeks of paid time off of work.
- Introduced (1/15/2015)

HB 4061 LEAD EXPOSURE (Banks) Requires screening for lead exposure in children 12-24 months.
- Introduced (1/27/2015) Health Policy

HB 4139 CHILD WELFARE (Howrylak) Revises interstate compact for the placement of children.
- Introduced (2/4/2015) Families, Children and Seniors

HB 4202 EDUCATION (Somerville) Allows fundraising activities during school hours, including bake sales and candy sales no longer allowed under federal school nutrition guidelines.
- Introduced (2/17/2015) Education

HB 4203-4205 CORPORATION LAW (Callton, Graves and Schor) Revises reference of "crippled children" to "children and youth with special health care needs."
- Introduced (2/17/2015) Health Policy

HB 4206 BREAST MILK BANKS (Geiss) Regulates human breast milk banks, companies and cooperatives.
- Introduced (2/17/2015) Health Policy

HB 4207 ADVANCED PRACTICE REGISTERED NURSES (Yonker) Establishes licensure requirements for advanced practice registered nurses, revises requirements for nurse midwives, nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists and provides other general amendments.
- Introduced (2/17/2015) Health Policy

HB 4218 EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTION (Smiley) Requires department to develop written information about emergency contraception and requires health facilities and agencies that provide emergency or urgent care to offer to certain victims of criminal sexual conduct.
- Introduced (2/18/2015) Health Policy

HB 4230 SCHOOL FUNDRAISING (Potvin) Allows certain fund-raising activities during school hours. This would allow bake and candy sales which do not meet the federal schools nutrition guidelines.
- Introduced (2/24/2015) Education

HB 4235 MATERNAL DEATH REPORTING (Darany) Requires physicians and certain health facilities to report to department as part of health information system.
- Introduced (2/25/2015) Health Policy

SB 72 MEDICAL MARIHUANA (Jones) Restrict authorization of medical marihuana in certain places (schools, buses) . Amends 2008 IL 1 by amending section 7 (MCL 333.26427).
- Reported in Senate (2/10/2015) Judiciary;
amendments adopted
- Introduced (1/29/2015) Judiciary

SB 112-114 CRIPPLED CHILDREN (multiple) Revises reference to "crippled children" to "children and youth with special health care needs."
- Committee Hearing in Senate (2/25/2015)
- Introduced (2/17/2015)
Families, Seniors and Human Services

SB 139 FUND-RAISING DURING SCHOOL (Colbeck) Allows certain fund-raising activities during school hours. This would allow bake and candy sales, which do not meet the federal healthy food in schools guidelines.
- Introduced (2/18/2015) Education

SB 143 BREAST MILK BANKS (Knezek) regulates companies and cooperatives of human breast milk banks.
- Introduced (2/18/2015) Health Policy

SB 147 CHARGE DESCRIPTION MASTER (Hune) Requires hospitals to post a master description of charges on hospital's website.
- Introduced (2/18/2015) Health Policy

SB 150 HEALTH PLANS (O'Brien) Clarifies requirements for synchronizing multiple prescriptions and dispensing fees.
- Introduced (2/19/2015) Insurance

SB 159 PHYSICIAN-PATIENT TREATMENT PROGRAMS (Hertel) Prohibits government interference with physician-patient treatment programs.
- Introduced (2/25/2015) Health Policy

HJR F CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS (Barrett) Ensure equal amount of per pupil funding for all local school districts.
- Introduced (1/27/2015) Appropriations
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Register now to hear sessions on Gestational Viability; Improving Outcomes for Low Income, First Time Mothers and Babies; Single-gene Disorders; Pros and Cons of Neonatal Circumcision; Intrauterine Growth Restriction; and more. Download a registration brochure here.
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Study Examines How Bariatric Surgery Affects Pregnancy Outcomes
Swedish researchers found obese women who underwent bariatric surgery had a lower risk of gestational diabetes and delivering large babies, but had a higher risk of shorter pregnancies and lower birth weight babies compared with obese women who didn't have surgery. Data also showed babies born to mothers who had surgery were at an increased risk of stillbirth and neonatal death. The findings appear in The New England Journal of Medicine.
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CDC Diseases Course Offered in Lansing June 16-17
The CDC Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases Course (also called the Pink Book Course) will be offered in Lansing on June 16-17, 2015. This two-day course will be presented by Ray Strikas, MD, MPH, and JoEllen Wolicki, RN, BSN, immunization educators with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A state immunization update, given by the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH), Division of Immunization, will also be included. Using content from the book Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, the class provides a comprehensive review of vaccine-preventable diseases and the recommended vaccines to prevent them. Participants will have many opportunities to ask questions.
The class will be held at the Lansing Center. More information available here.
Online registration for this class will begin April 6.
As more details become available, including registration information, they will be posted at: michigan.gov/immunize; Click on Health Care Professionals/Providers
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