Health Policy News - Urgent Federal Item & State Update Special Edition

We are bringing you a special edition of Health Policy News because of events happening at the federal and state levels of government.   Last Monday, the Trust for America's Health alerted partners to an amendment in the U.S. House Rules Committee, offered by Congressman Joe Pitts (R‐PA), to use $8.85 billion of the Prevention and Public Health Fund (PPHF) to offset the costs of H.R. 1190. The PPHF represents approximately 16% of the Center for Disease Control's total budget and 38% of the chronic disease budget. In Washington, we receive funding from the PPHF for programs such as; 
  • The Preventive Health and Health Service Block Grant
  • Childhood Immunization Program (317 Grant)
  • Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention
  • Cancer Programs 

What should you do?

  • E-mail or phone Congressman McDermott to thank him for his remarks in support of the PPHF today.
  • Send an e-mail or call your member (or the entire Washington State Congressional Delegation if you are a statewide organization) and let them know you/or your organization are opposed to using the PPHF to offset H.R. 1190.
  • Click here for a list of the Washington State Congressional District Directors, Health LAs, and numbers to the DC offices to contact your local representative.


Meanwhile, here in Washington State there is still no agreement on an operating budget for 2015-2017. Without an operating budget by June 30, the Washington State government will begin a potential partial shutdown.

For more Federal and State updates, see the full Health Policy News You Can Use


Health Policy News You Can Use_ URGENT Federal Item & State Update Special Edition.pdf

Special Edition Health Policy News You Can Use, June 3rd 2015

Since the Washington State Legislature concluded their first special session without action on a 2015‐2017 operating budget, capital budget or transportation revenue package they are now in a second 30 day special session.   On May 28th, the final day of the first 30‐day special session, Senate Republicans released their latest operating budget. The Senate Republicans' budget proposal increases spending on higher education, state parks, drought relief and wages for caregivers in assisted living facilities. It adds $66 million to pay for collectively bargained state employee pay raises,  contingent on a new bill requiring contract negotiations to be open to the public. The Senate Ways and Means Committee voted their Republican budget bill out of committee on Thursday. See this link for the budget details.  For more special session and budget info, click on the link for the full Health Policy News You Can Use
Health Policy News You Can Use_ Special Edition June 3, 2015.pdf

Health, Safety & Resilience: Foundations for Health Equity (Washington State Adverse Childhood Experiences data, Winter 2015)

This report presents breaking news from the people of Washington State, viewed through the lens of a bundle of science we are calling "NEAR": Neuroscience, Epigenetics, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), and Resilience.

The source of data used to generate maps, data tables and charts in this report is the Washington State Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, or "BRFSS." The Learning Institute at Healthy Gen has been working consistently to improve the data and in this report presents a look at the current ACEs burden in Washington by age and geography, information on the intergenerational transmission of ACEs, and the potentially mitigating effects of social support, help and community reciprocity factors. 

Online Version_2014-2015 Statewide_4-21-15.pdf

Community Context for Academic Achievement; A Report on Community Factors that Predict Resilience & Prevention in Nine Randomly Selected Communities in Washington

January 20, 2015

Executive Summary

The context for optimal human development includes healthy families, flourishing communities, and the events and systems that shape these. Community capacity is found to be significantly correlated with positive trends in the rates of child safety and school completion (Laverack, 2006; Hall, 2012). Community capacity is described as the empowerment of communities to come together, share responsibility for alleviating crises, improve services, and build healthy environments for families and children (Chatskin, 1999).
This study provides information about the community context for child and family life in Washington, including the degree to which systems of the community operate effectively as a whole to improve outcomes. Using information from Key Informants in nine Washington communities, we consider processes that communities use to develop a sense of belonging and shared identity, come together in celebration or problem solving, reflect on past efforts, agree upon and collaboratively generate solutions, and weave a stronger social fabric as a part of considering community capacity development. Key Informant interviews and community capacity scoring of those interviews are designed to provide insight into the community contextual environment and the capacities of that environment.
Qualitative data from key informants in nine randomly selected Washington communities are considered in this report. Processes and tools used for analysis of the interviews and rating of community capacities are consistent with those used in over a decade of systematic observations of community capacity in Washington State. This includes both capacity index scores (Longhi & Porter, 2009), and correlations between interview content and descriptions of characteristics of five distinct phases of community capacity building (Flaspohler et al., 2012).
Forty-seven interviews with Key Informants in nine Washington communities, reveal common themes, as well as, significant community variation in practices that help communities to flourish. Since the instruments to assess community capacity have been consistently used from 1998 through this 2014-15 interview process, community capacity trends over time are also considered. The names of persons interviewed and the names of the communities where interviews were conducted are not used in this report in order to preserve confidentiality and optimize reporting of most promising and most challenging community capacity building stories.
Community Context Report_1-20-15_final to Dr Blodgett.pdf

No School Alone: How community risks and assets contribute to school and youth success

No School Alone: How community risks and assets contribute to school and youth success (March, 2015)

Christopher Blodgett, Ph.D. Washington State University

Report prepared for the Washington State Office of Financial Management in response to the Legislature’s directions in Substitute House Bill 2739 

In this report, we test if the levels of the challenges resulting from Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in a community’s adult population contribute to current conditions of disruption in children that make ACEs a multigenerational problem. While the effects of poverty on school performance guide long-term and significant investment policies, ACEs is a comparatively new idea and until very recently has not been tested as a policy planning tool. Several hundred peer-reviewed research studies consistently support the role of ACEs as arguably the most powerful single predictor of health and well-being in adulthood. However, equivalent results in childhood emerged only in the past few years. Exposure to ACEs begins very early in life, resulting in risks to the developing brain. This additional exposure to stress leads to the emergence of physical and social mechanisms of No School Alone 4 coping that can interfere with development during childhood and compromise life success and health in adulthood.

No School Alone_ How community risks and assets contribute to school and youth success.pdf

Health Policy News - Final 2015 Regular Session Edition

Dear Friends,

With operating budget negotiations stalled, the legislature adjourned Sine Die on Friday. This was two days earlier than Sunday April 26th the scheduled 105th day of the regular legislative session. Governor Inslee will call the legislature back into special session on Wednesday, April 29th. Budget negotiators have been invited to meet with Governor Inslee on Monday, April 27th in advance of the start of special session.  

More in the full version of this final, regular edition of Health Policy News You Can Use!

Thanks for joining us this 2015 Legislative Session!

- Your Healthy Policy News Team (Erin, Julie, Whitney and Friends) 

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Final 2015 Regular Session Edition.pdf

Health Policy News: Transportation funding updates - April 20, 2015

Last week the House passed a 16 year transportation revenue packageThe grid below shows the House proposed levels for Safe Routes to School and Bike/Pedestrian funding. Advocates are thanking both House and Senate Transportation leaders, asking for support of these initial funding levels as well as an increase for Safe Routes to School projects. A shout out to our partners American Heart Association, Childhood Obesity Prevention Coalition and Washington Bikes for their advocacy work this session on Safe Routes to School and Bike/Pedestrian funding. 

For more on the transportation funding package, and updates on e-cigs & vaping. Click to view the entire Health Policy News You Can Use, for the week of April 20th. 

Health Policy News You Can Use_ Transportation funding updates.pdf

Webinar - E-cigarettes and Vaping: What You Need to Know

E-cigs and Vaping: What You Need to Know (February 19, 2015)
Presentations from:
  • Dr. Jessica K. Pepper, Center for Regulatory Research on Tobacco Communication, University of North Carolina
  • Deb Drandoff, Assistant Director, Prevention & Youth Services, Washington State ESD 112 
  • Paul Davis, Tobacco Prevention & Control and Marijuana Education, WA State Department of Health
  • Ron Oldham, Moderator

If you are interested in participating in a learning community focused on the science and policy impacts of e-cigarettes and vaping, please click on this link and sign up for further conversations. 

E-cigs and Vaping: What You Need to Know

Health Policy News: Budget Update - April 13, 2015

We are entering the fourteenth week of the regular legislative session. Two weeks to go until "Sine Die." This Wednesday, April 15th at 5:00pm, is the next cutoff ‐ the last day to consider opposite house bills, except those with the highly coveted Necessary to Implement the Budget (NTIB) designation.    For 'What We're Watching' and more budget updates, click on the link to the full Health Policy News You Can Use. 
Health Policy News You Can Use_ Budget Update.pdf

Health Policy News - April 6, 2015

Welcome to the thirteenth week of the legislative session! This Tuesday, April 7th will be the next cutoff to pass bills out of committee. Last Thursday, The House and Senate debated their proposed 2015-17 budgets on their respective chamber floors. The House passed its proposed $38.8 billion budget on Thursday afternoon 51-47, along party lines. The Senate held an overnight session Thursday night, working for more than 10 hours, adjourning at 4:15 a.m. Friday morning.

For What We're Watching this week and more, see the full Health Policy News You Can Use for the week of April 6.

Health Policy News You Can Use April 6.pdf

Health Policy News - April 2, 2015

Welcome to this special mid-week Health Policy News. The Senate Republicans introduced their $38 million 2015-17 budget on Tuesday. The budget increases funding over the biennium by $4.1 billion from current spending. The proposed budget has no tax increases, but relies on the projected $3 billion in increased revenue due to economic growth, budget reductions, moving $325 million in expected retail marijuana tax revenue to the general fund and allowing several tax breaks to expire.  

For more information, click on the pdf link below. 

Health Policy News You Can Use April 2.pdf

Health Policy News - March 30, 2015

Welcome to the twelfth week of the legislative session. It's another busy week in Olympia, and Wednesday, April 1st is the cutoff for bills out of policy committees in the opposite house at 5:00pm. The House operating budget for the 2015-17 biennium totaled nearly $39 billion. As expected, $1.5 billion in new revenue sources were proposed, including a new capital gains tax and changes to the business and occupation tax. House Appropriations Chairman Ross Hunter stated he believes the budget will fully fund the McCleary decision as mandated by the state Supreme Court. The budget will also provide more state hospital and community beds for the mentally ill. You can view the full House proposal here. For highlights of the House budget so far, see the full Health Policy News You Can Use.

Health Policy News You Can Use March 30 2015.pdf

Case Study: Advancing No-Smoking Policies in Public Health

Case Study Focus: Washington State has been advancing no-smoking policies in Public Housing Authorities since 2009. This is in large part due to quality, collaborative partnerships involving the Washington State Department of Health, Foundation for Healthy Generations (Healthy Gen), the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of the National Association of Housing, and Redevelopment Officials (PNRC-NAHRO), the Association of Washington Housing Authorities (AWHA), Public Housing Authorities, and local health departments.  

Foundation for Healthy Generations (Healthy Gen) was funded by the Department of Health in 2011 to lead efforts with public housing authorities to create changes in systems that improve the health of residents, including the creation of no-smoking policies. As of 2014, 32 of the 38 Public Housing Authorities in the state have at least one or more properties covered by a no-smoking policy. This includes 34,174 of a total of 38,844 public housing units in Washington State. In 2009, only 4 public housing authorities, with a total of 834 units, had a no-smoking policy in place. The advancement of no-smoking policies currently impacts about 82,000 residents of public housing authorities throughout the state. Twenty-eight (28) of the 32 Public Housing Authorities with no-smoking policies cover 100 percent of their properties. At least 19 Public Housing Authority no-smoking policies are considered comprehensive.