Community Benefit

February 2016 Community Benefit Update

We would like to share the following community benefit news and resources with you.

Regulatory and Legislative Efforts to Report Work on Housing as Community Benefit

Feb. 23 Webinar on 2014-2015 Schedule H Form and Instructions

ACHI Annual Meeting – Lunch for CHA Members

Accountable Health Communities Model

U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services Release Joint Letter and Toolkit Addressing Critical Link between Health and Education

Stakeholder Health Looks at Hospitals and Housing

IOM Committee on Community-Based Solutions to Promote Health Equity in the United States

Upcoming CHA Events

Community Benefit in the News

Regulatory and Legislative Efforts to Report Work on Housing as Community Benefit
There is growing consensus that attention to social and environmental determinants of health, such as housing, poverty and education, can impact the health of low-income persons in our communities. CHA and others have been working to ensure that activities related to these determinants of health can be reported by hospitals as community benefit on the IRS Form 990, Schedule H.

  • In December, in response to a request by CHA, the AHA and the AAMC, the IRS issued a notice clarifying that certain housing improvements and other spending on social determinants of health may qualify as community benefit for Form 990, Schedule H reporting.
  • Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) is circulating a letter among members of Congress and asking them to sign on to a request to the IRS Commissioner seeking clarification and to allow all "community building" activities to be reported as community benefits.

Feb. 23 Webinar on 2014-2015 Schedule H Form and Instructions
CHA and Vizient (formerly known as VHA) are co-sponsoring a webinar on the 2014-2015 IRS Form 990, Schedule H and its instructions. The webinar will feature Stephen Clarke who oversaw the creation, rollout and yearly update of the Schedule H while at the IRS. Mr. Clarke, now executive director of Exempt Organization Tax Services at Ernst and Young LLP, will give an overview of the content and history of the Form 990, Schedule H, as well as discuss key issues such as the distinction between community building and community benefit, how to report restricted grants and how compliance (and noncompliance) with the Affordable Care Act Sec. 501(r) requirements are reported on the form. Visit the CHA website to register. Webinar is free for CHA and Vizient members.

ACHI Annual Meeting – Lunch for CHA Members
CHA members attending the ACHI annual meeting March 1-3, 2016 in Baltimore are invited to attend a networking lunch on March 1 at 11:45 a.m. The event will be held in the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront hotel in Dover AB, located on the 3rd Floor. Please RSVP to Debbie Morrow at dmorrow@chausa.org if you plan to attend.

Accountable Health Communities Model
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is currently implementing the Accountable Health Communities (AHC) model to address a critical gap between clinical care and community services in the current health care delivery system by testing whether systematically identifying and addressing the health-related social needs of beneficiaries impacts total health care costs, improves health and quality of care. Over a five-year period, CMS will implement and test a three-track model based on promising service delivery approaches. CMS will award a total of 44 cooperative agreements ranging from $1 million (per Track 1 site) to $4.5 million (per Track 3 site) to successful applicants to implement the Accountable Health Communities model. Applicants will partner with state Medicaid agencies, clinical delivery sites and community service providers and are responsible for coordinating community efforts to improve linkage between clinical care and community services. For more information, including application information and webinar recordings on the model, visit the CMS Innovation Center. Applications will be accepted until March 31.

U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services Release Joint Letter and Toolkit Addressing Critical Link between Health and Education
On Jan. 15 the U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Health and Human Services (HHS) sent a letter to governors, chief state school officers, state health officials and state Medicaid directors noting the critical role that health care coverage and health services play in ensuring all students are ready and able to learn, and recommending action steps to better coordinate health and education services for all students and their families.

One recommendation is for local educational agencies to participate in their local hospital's community health needs assessment as a way of strengthening collaboration between local education and health systems. More details about all recommended actions can be found in the toolkit Healthy Students, Promising Futures State and Local Action Steps and Practices to Improve School-Based Health.

Stakeholder Health Looks at Hospitals and Housing
Stakeholder Health's latest newsletter looks at hospitals and health systems that have designed their own housing programs to make high-quality, affordable housing available to low-income, high-risk populations. Bon Secours Baltimore Health System is featured.

Stakeholder Health is an on-going learning collaborative of some 40-plus health systems and invested institutions calling for operational transformations that align with the profound changes occurring in all aspects in the provision of health care.

IOM Committee on Community-Based Solutions to Promote Health Equity in the United States
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, as part of its Culture of Health initiative, has asked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to form a consensus committee to examine the evidence on solutions to promote health equity. As part of its work, the committee will identify and examine six examples of community-based solutions (drawn from health and non-health sectors) that address health inequities, drawing both from deliberate and indirect interventions or activities that promote equal opportunity for health.

Visit the committee's webpage on the IOM website to learn more about the committee's charge and to register for the next public meeting on March 7.

Community Benefit in the News
Recent articles from Catholic Health World and Health Progress featuring community benefit news and programs from the across the ministry include: