Discover what's new with HCHA and our members!
View this email in your browser
Harris County Healthcare Alliance
Collaborating to create comprehensive healthcare

December 2014 E-Newsletter

HHS Secretary Recognizes Gulf Coast Collaborative 

Three days after the second enrollment period opened on November 15, U.S. Secretary of Health & Human Services, Sylvia Burwell, visited Houston to help spread the word about enrollment. She met with the Gulf Coast Health Insurance Marketplace Collaborative, comprised of local community leaders and grassroots organizations who are working together to increase enrollment among the uninsured, before holding a press conference at the Denver Harbor Multi-Service Center on November 18. Secretary Burwell committed to make frequent visits to Houston and across Texas to hold conversations about the importance of having health insurance. With 6 million uninsured, Texas has the highest rate and greatest number of uninsured residents in the U.S., despite 734,000 Texans signing up during last year’s open enrollment. The Gulf Coast Collaborative effort contributed to over 198,000 newly insured Houstonians participating in 2014's inaugural enrollment period.

We hope you were able to attend our December 5 First Friday on Health Disparities, sponsored by Texas Children's Global Health Initiatives. You can access presentations for the city and county here.

RSVP for these discussions:

Legislative Advocacy
January 9, 2015

Healthcare Response
to Homelessness

February 6, 2015

The Impact of
Health Related Behaviors

March 6, 2015
Our First Fridays are held at the same time and place monthly: 12:00-1:30 p.m. at San José Clinic, 2615 Fannin, Houston, TX 77002. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, contact Stephen Collazo.
Legacy Awarded HRSA Funds to Help Expand Behavioral Health Services
Legacy Community Health Services was recently awarded $250,000 to expand its behavioral health services. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) announced in November that $51.3 million in Affordable Care Act funding would be awarded to support 210 health centers nationwide to establish or expand behavioral health services for nearly 440,000 people. Earlier this year, HHS awarded $54.5 million in Affordable Care Act funding for 223 other health centers to expand behavioral health services. the funds will help health centers to hire additional mental health professionals, add mental health and substance use disorder health services, and employ integrated models of primary care. Read the HRSA press release.
Connect with Your Inner Child: Support SBCHC's 2014 Holiday Toy Drive 
Spring Branch Community Health Center (SBCHC) has adopted two schools for its annual Holiday Toy Drive. It will be delivering toys to Lion Lane School and Tiger Trail School on December 17 and 18. SBCHC seeks community help in gathering over 600 toys needed for both schools. To donate toys (new and unwrapped, please), stop by one of three SBCHC locations to drop them off by December 12. Join the annual Wrapping Party on December 13 at 9 a.m., at 1615 Hillendahl Blvd, Suite 100, Houston 77055. Click for more details.
St. Hope Foundation's Video Trumpets Diabetes Awareness
In the spirit of raising awareness about diabetes, St. Hope Foundation is presenting a health video (their fourth one!) that parodies the internationally acclaimed singer, Jason Derulo’s song “Trumpets.” The upbeat tune and energetic dancing offer a fun way to learn about a serious subject. The FQHC provides a wide range of medical and preventive services from its six health centers in and around Houston. Click here to watch the video now!
Holiday Music Extravaganza Celebrated TOMAGWA
Lone Star College-Tomball Music Department honored TOMAGWA at a Holiday Music Extravaganza on Tuesday, November 25. The free concert, held at Lone Star College-Tomball Performing Arts Center, was open to the public and acknowledged the community efforts of TOMAGWA HealthCare Ministries. The name TOMAGWA refers to "Tomball, Magnolia, & Waller," which roughly defined the original service area of the clinic when it opened about 25 years ago.
El Centro de Corazon Awarded Grant by American Cancer Society, Cheered on by Team Effort
El Centro de Corazon was awarded a grant by the American Cancer Society, partnering with NFL Foundation, to support Breast Cancer Awareness Day on October 25. Various collaborators, including Houston Methodist, The Rose and Program 211, offered breast health education, prevention and resources to more than 200 participants. Volunteers from various organizations offered support, including the Houston Texans cheerleaders, who helped with children’s activities.
Your Texas Benefits - Free App Available to Download
The Texas Health and Human Services Commission has made a new app available, in Google Play and the iTunes App store, as a complement to the website. The app offers a convenient way for clients to check basic case facts and upload supporting documents to their case at a time and place that works for them. To learn more about the features of the app and see a step-by-step guide for using it, watch the YouTube video here.
Important Dates to Know: From the Healthcare.Gov Team
Open Enrollment is the time when people can find a new Marketplace plan, decide to keep their current plan, or see if they can get help paying for coverage. To make sure they’re covered in 2015, everyone should take note of these dates:
  • December 15, 2014 is the deadline to enroll for new coverage that begins on January 1, 2015. If one's plan is changing or one wants to change plans, enroll by December 15 to avoid a lapse in coverage.
  • December 31, 2014 is the day all 2014 Marketplace coverage ends, no matter when enrolled. Coverage for 2015 plans can start as soon as January 1.
  • February 15, 2015 is the last day one can enroll in 2015 coverage before the end of Open Enrollment.
     Save these dates and share them with friends, family and everyone. Find more enrollment info here.
Keep Us Posted!
Help us share your news with fellow members and our area's larger healthcare community! Email your updates and announcements to LaVonne Carlson. Or visit us on Facebook--you'll like us!

We look forward to hearing from you!
Copyright © 2014 Harris County Healthcare Alliance, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Harris County Healthcare Alliance, 1310 Prairie, Suite 1080, Houston, TX 77002
unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences