Health briefs: Yampa Valley Medical Associates joins public-private partnership
Steamboat Springs — Local practice joins new public-private partnership
Yampa Valley Medical Associates in Steamboat Springs and 2,900 other primary care practices nationwide have begun participating in a new partnership with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, or CMS, state Medicaid agencies, commercial health plans and others.
The Compressive Primary Care Plus, or CPC+, partnership is meant to improve access to quality healthcare at lower costs for those on Medicaid and Medicare.
Through the program, CMS will pay primary care practices a care-management fee to support enhanced, coordinated services on behalf of Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries as a way to encourage improved medical care.
Simultaneously, participating commercial, state and other federal insurance plans are also offering enhanced payment to primary care practices designed to support them in providing high-quality primary care on behalf of their members.
For patients, this means physicians may offer longer and more flexible hours, use electronic health records, coordinate care with patients’ other health care providers, better engage patients and caregivers in managing their own care and provide individualized, enhanced care for patients living with multiple chronic diseases and higher needs.
CPC+ is administered by the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation. The CMS Innovation Center was created by the Affordable Care Act to test innovative payment and service delivery models that have the potential to reduce program expenditures, while preserving or enhancing the quality of care.
For more information about CPC+, visit innovation.cms.gov/initiatives/comprehensive-primary-care-plus/
Presentation addresses racism and health inequities
Healthcare providers and the community are invited to a discussion about the history of racism in the United States, its role in creating health inequities and the importance of naming and recognizing racism to mitigate its impact on society and health.
The free event is from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Bud Werner Memorial Library. Rachel Hardeman, an assistant professor in the Division of Health Policy and Management at the University of Minnesota, will be the presenter. Northwest Colorado Health is hosting the presentation in partnership with the Colorado Trust. A light dinner will be provided, and childcare and Spanish interpretation will be available upon request. Learn more at northwestcoloradohealth.org/events. RSVP at 970-871-7323.
Flu shots still available, beneficial
Influenza is a contagious virus and can cause mild to severe illness, sometimes resulting in hospitalization. Older adults, young children and people with certain health conditions may be at high risk for complications. It’s not too late to get a flu shot; flu season typically extends into spring. Flu symptoms can include fever, fatigue, muscle or body aches, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose and headaches. If a person becomes ill, flu vaccination may make the illness milder.
Avoid getting or spreading flu by washing hands frequently and covering your cough. People who get sick should stay home from work or school until at least 24 hours after their fever is gone. Antiviral medications can lessen symptoms and duration of illness. Individuals who are at risk of complications should check with their healthcare provider promptly after getting sick. Others can be treated with antivirals at their healthcare provider’s discretion.
Flu shots are available by appointment at Northwest Colorado Health, 940 Central Park Drive, Suite 101. Low-cost vaccinations are available for individuals who do not have insurance. Same day appointments are often available. Call 970-879-1632.
Program expands eligibility for cervical cancer screenings
Northwest Colorado Health is offering free cervical cancer screenings and diagnostic services to women age 21 to 64 through the Women’s Wellness Connection. Eligibility for these services previously began at age 40. To qualify, women must meet financial qualifications, be in the U.S. legally and have limited or no health insurance. Women’s Wellness Connection is a program of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. For more information, visit northwestcoloradohealth.org/wwc or call 970-879-1632.
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STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — When the Routt County Conservation District, with organizational roots that extend to 1942, reconstituted in spring 2019, the top priority was soil health.