A bill was introduced in the MN House and Senate that will result in expansion of CHW services (more information below). We need your help to make sure it gets a hearing. Please reach out to your House and Senate representatives to encourage them to support the bill THIS WEEK.
WHO SHOULD YOU CONTACT?
To find your legislative district, who represents you in the MN House and MN Senate AND their contact info:
The Alliance is especially interested in reaching out to these representatives:
Rep. Tina Liebling (DFL) District: 26A (Rochester area) (Chair)
Rep. John Huot (DFL) District: 57B (Rosemount/Apple Valley area) (Vice chair)
Rep. Joe Schomacker (R) District: 22A (Pipestone/Luverne/Marshall area) (Republican lead)
If you live in their districts please take action and reach out to them!
WHAT SHOULD YOU SAY?
Below is an EMAIL TEMPLATE to write your House or Senate Representative – feel free to personalize.
Honorable Representative/Senator NAME
I am contacting you to request a meeting related to HF69/SF1106, a bill that defines care coordination related to Community Health Workers (CHW). Current statute allows for limited Medicaid reimbursement for CHWs and additional language defining the CHW role and CHW care coordination functions would make it easier for health care employers to support existing CHW services, increase access to these services, and provide support for a professional role that can help address health inequities in Minnesota.
I am seeking your support of this bill and I request 20-30 minutes to share my personal and professional experience and the perspective of the Legislative Action Committee of the Minnesota Community Health Worker Alliance. For more information about the impact of the CHW role, please visit: www.mnchwalliance.org.
I greatly appreciate your time and consideration.
FULL ADDRESS (they can see you are a constituent)
PHONE NUMBER (for contact)
WHAT WE ARE ASKING FOR?
The DHS provider manual defines CHWs as “health educators;” this definition is incomplete and there is no definition in statute. The CHW Medicaid statute includes “health education and care coordination” as part of the CHW reimbursable services; however, “care coordination” is not clearly defined and DHS has not included CHW care coordination services in the DHS provider manual. Defining the CHW role and CHW care coordination functions would make it easier for health care employers to capture revenue and support existing CHW services, thereby supporting the CHW field and access to cost-effective CHW services.
PROPOSED BILL LANGUAGE (not final)
Subd. 49. Community health worker. (a) Community Health Workers (CHWs) are trusted, knowledgeable frontline health personnel who typically come from the communities they serve. CHWs bridge cultural and linguistic barriers, assist with access to coverage and care, and improve health outcomes. As critical links between their communities and the health care system, CHWs work to reduce health inequities; boost cultural competence; and empower individuals and communities for better health. (b) For purposes of this subdivision, “care coordination” means advocacy, education, and support meant to reduce emergency room use and hospitalizations, increase access to holistic, integrated health and dental care, and connect individuals and families with covered services. Activities support timely use of primary care, emergency services, crisis intervention, hospital and long term care as well as community-based programs. These activities include but are not limited to addressing a client’s chemical, mental, oral, and physical health; social, economic, and housing needs; and linking them to services.