Date   
Re: Anyone heard anything about their RETAIN bid? Any states? Evaluators? Technical Assistance?

Susan Weidenbach [KDC]
 

 
We received our Notice of Award today!  [MODERATOR NOTE:  YAY, KANSAS!]

On Sep 26, 2018, at 8:23 PM, Jennifer Christian MD <jennifer.christian@...> wrote:

The ODEP website about RETAIN still says two out of the three pending types of awards (the expected 8 states and a single technical assistance contractor) will be announced before September 30 – and Jennifer Sheehy from ODEP told us that DOL must commit the money by then.  (SSA has not committed to the date when they will make their award for the single evaluation contractor.)

 

And I just realized that September 30 is Sunday.  The last business day in September is this Friday.

 

Has anyone heard anything from DOL?   My fingers are crossed for all of us.  (Webility was part of a bid to serve as the Technical Assistance contractor and provide support to all of the states that receive awards.)  

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

Moderator, RETAINers List-Serv and Website on Groups.io

(a volunteer activity – not an officially sponsored group)

Chair, 60 Summits Project

(non-profit organization founded in 2006 and mothballed since 2010)

www.60summits.org 

508-358-0169

 

Anyone heard anything about their RETAIN bid? Any states? Evaluators? Technical Assistance?

Jennifer Christian MD
 

The ODEP website about RETAIN still says two out of the three pending types of awards (the expected 8 states and a single technical assistance contractor) will be announced before September 30 – and Jennifer Sheehy from ODEP told us that DOL must commit the money by then.  (SSA has not committed to the date when they will make their award for the single evaluation contractor.)

 

And I just realized that September 30 is Sunday.  The last business day in September is this Friday.

 

Has anyone heard anything from DOL?   My fingers are crossed for all of us.  (Webility was part of a bid to serve as the Technical Assistance contractor and provide support to all of the states that receive awards.)  

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

Moderator, RETAINers List-Serv and Website on Groups.io

(a volunteer activity – not an officially sponsored group)

Chair, 60 Summits Project

(non-profit organization founded in 2006 and mothballed since 2010)

www.60summits.org 

508-358-0169

 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Jim Talmage
 

Thanks, Tom.

 

I am a Buckeye (Class of 68 & 72). I am in Columbus once a month as I consult with the Ohio Police & Fire Pension Fund.

 

James B. Talmage MD

olddrt@... (home)

931.510.7920 (mobile)

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Thomas Wickizer
Sent: Friday, September 21, 2018 11:13 AM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Subject: Re: [RETAINers] RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

 

Jim,

Attached are 3 of the articles you requested.  I will try and track down the Cheadle paper. Please contact me if you have questions.  I was the lead evaluator on the COHE project.

 Tom Wickizer

 Thomas Wickizer

Stephen F. Loebs Professor and

Chair, Division of Health Services Management and Policy

College of Public Health

Ohio State University

Room 202

1841 Neil Avenue

Columbus, OH 43210

(614-688-3854)

(twickizer@...)

 

Re: Here are the 4 articles on COHE that Dr. Talmage requested

Nicole Cushman
 

Thank you Jennifer! We are very lucky to have you keeping all of this together.

 

Thank you,

 

Nicole Cushman

Program Director

Center of Occupational Health & Education (COHE) Alliance of Western Washington

P 253.428.8423 | I 152-8423 | F 253.552.5631

nicolecushman@...

https://www.chifranciscan.org/health-care-services/cohe.html  

 

COHE logo color

 

 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Jason Turner
 

Congratulations Jennifer!   How wonderful you must feel now, watching your baby emerge.  I really hope you are a prime in the TA. 
 
When announced, send me the link so I can see if some of the winners are SIG states and we can feature at a meeting. 
 
Cheers. 

Jason Turner, Executive Director
Secretaries' Innovation Group
Cell:  414-839-6671
 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Thomas Wickizer
 

Jim,

 

Attached are 3 of the articles you requested.  I will try and track down the Cheadle paper. Please contact me if you have questions.  I was the lead evaluator on the COHE project.

 

Tom Wickizer

 

Thomas Wickizer

Stephen F. Loebs Professor and

Chair, Division of Health Services Management and Policy

College of Public Health

Ohio State University

Room 202

1841 Neil Avenue

Columbus, OH 43210

(614-688-3854)

(twickizer@...)

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jim Talmage
Sent: Friday, September 21, 2018 11:21 AM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Subject: Re: [RETAINers] RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

 

Jennifer,

 

Thanks.

 

Do you have and can you share with the pdf files on the other WA state COHE publications? I believe TN did submit a grant request.

5. Wickizer TM, Franklin G, Plaeger-Brockway R, et al. Improving the quality of workerscompensation health care delivery: the Washington State occupational health services project. Milbank Q. 2001;79:521.

6. Wickizer TM, Franklin GM, Mootz RD, et al. A communitywide intervention to improve outcomes and reduce disability among injured workers in Washington State.

Milbank Q. 2004;82:547567.

7. Cheadle A, Franklin G, Wofhagen C, et al. Factors influencing the duration of work-related disability: a population-based study of Washington State workerscompensation.

Am J Public Health. 1994;84:190196.

8. Wickizer TM, Franklin G, Fulton-Kehoe D, et al. Improving quality, preventing disability and reducing costs in workerscompensation healthcare: a population-based intervention study. Med Care. 2011;49: 11051111.

 

Jim

James B. Talmage MD

olddrt@... (home)

931.510.7920 (mobile)

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jennifer Christian MD
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2018 7:32 PM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Cc: jennifer.christian@...; jhchristian@...
Subject: [RETAINers] RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

 

Hello, all --

 

Just in case your state is selected to participate in RETAIN, this new study from Washington state (attached) confirms that the QUICK AND SIMPLE interventions that make up the COHE program have been EFFECTIVE in reducing by 30% the likelihood that NEWLY injured workers ended up with three kinds of poor outcomes, all of which signal workforce withdrawal and long term dependency on cash benefits.  They are  1. Awards of SSDI benefits,  2. Award of a Washington permanent disability pension for workers’ comp;  or  3.  Receipt of at least five years of “temporary total disability” wage replacement benefits.

 

BTW, are you like me on crazy pins and needles now – as the countdown clocks moves towards 9/30 -- the deadline for THREE different RETAIN-related shoes to drop?

  1. Which STATES will be selected to CONDUCT the project?   Will there be 8 as DOL planned?  (I am aware of 8 or possibly 9 states that applied.)
  2. Which VENDOR will be selected to provide TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE to all of the states? 
  3. Which VENDOR will be selected to EVALUATE the project?  

 

I HOPE the silence means the two agencies are considering all the proposals altogether,  and coordinating in an effort to figure out who will dance best with whom, given the variability in the designs and teams that the states proposed and matching them up with the different strengths and capabilities of the TA and evaluation bidders.  

 

I also HOPE HOPE HOPE the main goal of the procurement teams is to assure that RETAIN will be carried out by and supported by teams selected for their understanding of the challenges involved, as well as their commitment to and capability for making the ENTIRE effort a worthwhile use of the taxpayers’ money -- and a genuine practical benefit to the workers the state’s projects will serve!

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Marianne Cloeren
 

Grace, and all, I think that has been a great benefit of this effort – helping all of us make new connections with kindred spirits doing good work in other organizations!

Thank you!

Marianne

 

Marianne Cloeren, MD, MPH, FACOEM, FACP

Associate Professor

Division of Occupational & Environmental Medicine

University of Maryland School of Medicine

11 S Paca St., Suite 200

Baltimore, MD 21201

mcloeren@...

410-706-7464

 

 

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io <RETAINers@groups.io> On Behalf Of grace.fendlay@...
Sent: Friday, September 21, 2018 8:17 AM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Subject: Re: [RETAINers] RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

 

CAUTION: This message originated from a non UMB, UMSOM, FPI, or UMMS email system. Whether the sender is known or not known, hover over any links before clicking and use caution opening attachments.

 

Dr. Christian

 

Just a hello from Maryland. I'm excited to see RETAIN coming close to announcements and awards!

 

It still saddens me that we were not able to prepare a response in the time allotted. Fortunately, I am crazy busy with other grants. Maryland is definitely on US DOL's radar for our efforts using workforce development projects to alleviate the opioid crisis.

 

One of the best things that came to me through the RETAIN efforts is connecting with Dr. Marianne Cloeren. I have such respect for her. She keeps in the loop with me on resources for the opioids as well as RETAIN-type resources I share.

 

I hope this note finds you and yours well and thriving!

 

Grace


--

Grace Fendlay
Director of Discretionary Grants
Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning
Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing & Regulation
1100 North Eutaw Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
grace.fendlay@...
410-767-0044 (office)
410-333-5162 (fax)

 

DLLR Website | Facebook | Twitter

Click here to complete a three question customer experience survey

Here are the 4 articles on COHE that Dr. Talmage requested

Jennifer Christian MD
 

Dear Dr. Talmage – and all RETAINers

 

See the articles you requested, attached.  Luckily, I’ve been squirreling away stuff on COHE since they first started the thing.   BUT my file names don’t necessarily match the authors / titles – look at the year.  For those of you who don’t get attachments with your RETAINers emails, I’ve also put these articles in the RETAINers e-library.

 

Our “e-library” is called Files in the left-hand margin on our Groups.io site.  Go to https://groups.io/g/RETAINers.  In order to use the website, you must set up a Groups.io account (username and password).   

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

Moderator, RETAINers List-Serv and Website on Groups.io

(a volunteer activity – not an officially sponsored group)

Chair, 60 Summits Project

(non-profit organization founded in 2006 and mothballed since 2010)

www.60summits.org 

508-358-0169

 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Jim Talmage
 

Jennifer,

 

Thanks.

 

Do you have and can you share with the pdf files on the other WA state COHE publications? I believe TN did submit a grant request.

5. Wickizer TM, Franklin G, Plaeger-Brockway R, et al. Improving the quality of workerscompensation health care delivery: the Washington State occupational health services project. Milbank Q. 2001;79:521.

6. Wickizer TM, Franklin GM, Mootz RD, et al. A communitywide intervention to improve outcomes and reduce disability among injured workers in Washington State.

Milbank Q. 2004;82:547567.

7. Cheadle A, Franklin G, Wofhagen C, et al. Factors influencing the duration of work-related disability: a population-based study of Washington State workerscompensation.

Am J Public Health. 1994;84:190196.

8. Wickizer TM, Franklin G, Fulton-Kehoe D, et al. Improving quality, preventing disability and reducing costs in workerscompensation healthcare: a population-based intervention study. Med Care. 2011;49: 11051111.

 

Jim

James B. Talmage MD

olddrt@... (home)

931.510.7920 (mobile)

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jennifer Christian MD
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2018 7:32 PM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Cc: jennifer.christian@...; jhchristian@...
Subject: [RETAINers] RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

 

Hello, all --

 

Just in case your state is selected to participate in RETAIN, this new study from Washington state (attached) confirms that the QUICK AND SIMPLE interventions that make up the COHE program have been EFFECTIVE in reducing by 30% the likelihood that NEWLY injured workers ended up with three kinds of poor outcomes, all of which signal workforce withdrawal and long term dependency on cash benefits.  They are  1. Awards of SSDI benefits,  2. Award of a Washington permanent disability pension for workers’ comp;  or  3.  Receipt of at least five years of “temporary total disability” wage replacement benefits.

 

BTW, are you like me on crazy pins and needles now – as the countdown clocks moves towards 9/30 -- the deadline for THREE different RETAIN-related shoes to drop?

  1. Which STATES will be selected to CONDUCT the project?   Will there be 8 as DOL planned?  (I am aware of 8 or possibly 9 states that applied.)
  2. Which VENDOR will be selected to provide TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE to all of the states? 
  3. Which VENDOR will be selected to EVALUATE the project?  

 

I HOPE the silence means the two agencies are considering all the proposals altogether,  and coordinating in an effort to figure out who will dance best with whom, given the variability in the designs and teams that the states proposed and matching them up with the different strengths and capabilities of the TA and evaluation bidders.  

 

I also HOPE HOPE HOPE the main goal of the procurement teams is to assure that RETAIN will be carried out by and supported by teams selected for their understanding of the challenges involved, as well as their commitment to and capability for making the ENTIRE effort a worthwhile use of the taxpayers’ money -- and a genuine practical benefit to the workers the state’s projects will serve!

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Re: RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

grace.fendlay@...
 

Dr. Christian
 
Just a hello from Maryland. I'm excited to see RETAIN coming close to announcements and awards!
 
It still saddens me that we were not able to prepare a response in the time allotted. Fortunately, I am crazy busy with other grants. Maryland is definitely on US DOL's radar for our efforts using workforce development projects to alleviate the opioid crisis.
 
One of the best things that came to me through the RETAIN efforts is connecting with Dr. Marianne Cloeren. I have such respect for her. She keeps in the loop with me on resources for the opioids as well as RETAIN-type resources I share.
 
I hope this note finds you and yours well and thriving!
 
Grace

--



Grace Fendlay
Director of Discretionary Grants
Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning
Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing & Regulation
1100 North Eutaw Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
grace.fendlay@...
410-767-0044 (office)
410-333-5162 (fax)

 

DLLR Website | Facebook | Twitter

Click here to complete a three question customer experience survey

RETAIN update: New 8 yr follow up study confirms COHE impact on long term disability

Jennifer Christian MD
 

Hello, all --

 

Just in case your state is selected to participate in RETAIN, this new study from Washington state (attached) confirms that the QUICK AND SIMPLE interventions that make up the COHE program have been EFFECTIVE in reducing by 30% the likelihood that NEWLY injured workers ended up with three kinds of poor outcomes, all of which signal workforce withdrawal and long term dependency on cash benefits.  They are  1. Awards of SSDI benefits,  2. Award of a Washington permanent disability pension for workers’ comp;  or  3.  Receipt of at least five years of “temporary total disability” wage replacement benefits.

 

BTW, are you like me on crazy pins and needles now – as the countdown clocks moves towards 9/30 -- the deadline for THREE different RETAIN-related shoes to drop?

  1. Which STATES will be selected to CONDUCT the project?   Will there be 8 as DOL planned?  (I am aware of 8 or possibly 9 states that applied.)
  2. Which VENDOR will be selected to provide TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE to all of the states? 
  3. Which VENDOR will be selected to EVALUATE the project?  

 

I HOPE the silence means the two agencies are considering all the proposals altogether,  and coordinating in an effort to figure out who will dance best with whom, given the variability in the designs and teams that the states proposed and matching them up with the different strengths and capabilities of the TA and evaluation bidders.  

 

I also HOPE HOPE HOPE the main goal of the procurement teams is to assure that RETAIN will be carried out by and supported by teams selected for their understanding of the challenges involved, as well as their commitment to and capability for making the ENTIRE effort a worthwhile use of the taxpayers’ money -- and a genuine practical benefit to the workers the state’s projects will serve!

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

 

 

Press coverage of RETAIN beginning -- article in WorkCompCentral today

Jennifer Christian MD
 

To my knowledge, this article (attached and text pasted below) is the first public media story about RETAIN.  It appeared in a workers’ compensation e-newsletter called WorkCompCentral.   Thanks to Peter Rousmaniere, a nationally-known consultant and journalist from Vermont, for noticing its appearance and sharing it with us.   

 

Let’s hope there are many more – and that they are favorable.  One critical success factor for RETAIN is how the program is perceived.   It is important that there be strong public awareness of the program and its benefits. 

 

Let’s share everything we see in the press or other mass media.     See full text of the article pasted below and attached.  

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

This article appeared on WorkCompCentral – August 10, 2018

 

WCC RETAIN Grants 8 10 18

 

Feds to Award States $100M in Return-to-Work Grants

 

By Eddie Curran

 

National Topic:  A federal project that seeks to reconfigure the methods used to get injured and sick employees back to work as soon as possible has taken its first major step, receiving proposals from states seeking grants of up to $22.5 million apiece.

 

The five-year, $100 million pilot project bears the name RETAIN, for, Retaining Employment and Talent After Injury, and is to a considerable degree based on an early return-to-work program by the state of Washington.

 

RETAIN is based on a workers’ comp model, and the applicants are state agencies that oversee workers’ comp. However, the project will serve workers who are injured or become sick off the job as well as on.

 

While mental illness and other disabilities are part of RETAIN, the focus is on workers with musculoskeletal injuries.

 

In a nutshell, the purpose of RETAIN is to establish a system whereby within days, if not sooner, of a worker getting injured, the employer and medical personnel, working with the employee, develop a plan to get the worker back on the job as soon as possible, even if it’s in a reduced capacity, such as with adjusted responsibilities or even in a different job altogether.

 

A return-to-work (RTW) coordinator will reach out to the worker, physician and employer, and develop the plan.

 

Dr. Jennifer Christian, a Massachusetts-based disability expert who has been involved with the federal Office of Disability Employment Policy in the RETAIN project, said studies have shown that every day employees are away from work, the greater the likelihood that they won’t return. Often, they go on government assistance, and from a professional and personal standpoint, never recover.

 

“The purpose is to demonstrate that with a concentrated, integrated, organizational multi-sector effort, worker disability can be prevented, and people can keep their jobs and avoid going on disability and government assistance,” said Christian.

 

“But RETAIN is only a supplementary service. It doesn’t replace existing programs," she added. "RETAIN funds won’t pay for medical care or or wage-replacement benefits. It doesn’t replace any existing program.”

 

The program focuses on the first three months after a worker is injured, and project assistance concludes six months after the injury.

 

RETAIN is the result of research conducted from 2013 to 2017 by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, in partnership with the Labor Department’s Employment and Training Administration and the Social Security Administration.

 

The five-year demonstration program is divided into two phases. Those states that submitted applications by the July 23 deadline were seeking to participate in Phase 1.  Eight states will be chosen by the end September. Each will receive up to $2.5 million to be used over the 18 months of the first phase.

 

“Through the RETAIN demonstration project, we hope to learn how to best increase employment retention and labor force participation of people who develop or are at risk of developing what we call work disability,” said Jennifer Sheehy, deputy assistant secretary for ODEP, during a June 7 conference call with potential applicants and interested parties.

 

“By work disability, we mean an injury or illness that has the potential to interfere with or prevent ongoing employment,” Sheehy continued. “Importantly, the injury or illness can occur either on the job, where it would likely qualify for workers' compensation if available, or the injury or illness can occur off the job. Here it would not necessarily qualify for workers' compensation.”

 

The lead applicant for each state must be its labor or workforce development agency, or equivalent.

 

Required co-applicants include the state’s health department, one or more health care systems or health care provider networks, and the states' workforce development boards. There may be other team members as well.

 

Grant winners are to develop plans for their return-to-work program and establish the infrastructure that will be needed to implement their project. That's to include providing training for employers and health care workers on best practices, and building relationships with local stakeholders whose support will be essential.

 

Two other RFPs are to be awarded as well. The first will be a technical assistance contract, awarded to a firm that will assist the states with the RETAIN goals. The second contract, to be funded by the Social Security Administration, will be awarded to a firm that will evaluate the performance of the grant winners.

 

At the end of Phase 1, four of the eight states will be selected to participate in Phase 2. Each will receive up to $19.75 million to implement the projects designed in the first phase.

 

If the project bears fruit, and the Department of Labor believes RETAIN has allowed it to develop successful plans for states to use, the models would presumably be used nationwide.

 

“The goal is to have several states come up with a model that works for their geographics, their demographics and the configuration of their state systems, and to determine which ones worked well, and which ones had problems,” said Christian.

 

Christian noted that early return-to-work programs are not uncommon, but for the most part are limited to large, well-managed companies. To a considerable degree, the goal of RETAIN is to make such arrangements available to small companies and their employees.

 

ODEP makes no secret in acknowledging the project’s debt to the State of Washington’s early return-to-work program, called COHE, for Centers for Occupational Health and Education.

 

That program began with a pilot site in 2002. Now there are six regional COHE centers throughout the state, all funded by the Washington state Department of Labor & Industries, which runs the state's monopoly workers' comp insurance system.

 

Studies and audits of the COHE centers have found that participants were less likely to be off work and receiving disability benefits one year after a claim, missed far fewer days of work, and that combined medical and disability costs were reduced, by $510, per participant.

 

A U.S. Department of Labor analysis published in 2016 concluded that COHE participants were 26% less likely to receive Social Security disability benefits.

 

One purpose of RETAIN, according to ODEP, is to “test key features of the Washington COHE model” in other states and to apply the test to “a population beyond workers’ compensation.”

 

The hope is that, in five years, the federal government and participating states will have built on COHE’s success, and will have developed models that can be applied throughout the country and help keep more people in the workforce and off government assistance.

 

No such program can succeed without support from, and participation of, local employers and medical professionals, said Christian.

 

She said a similar program in the United Kingdom was found to have failed due to lack of referrals from companies and the medical community.

 

“In order for a program to get referrals, the doctors and employers have to be aware of the program and perceive it as a good program,” Christian said. “It not only has to be visible but have a good reputation. You have to build relationships with the stakeholders in the community.”

 

Christian said that while there may be people in the background in the workers’ comp and the managed care industries who have qualms or may even oppose RETAIN and its goals, none have stepped forward.

 

“Those who thrive on dysfunction may be opposed to it,” she said, but RETAIN “doesn’t clearly and directly gore anybody’s ox that I know of. That’s part of the reason why the government was able to put $100 million into the program, because it had strong bipartisan support right from the start,” she said.

 

 

I was wrong - you CAN see the TA project RFP

Jennifer Christian MD
 

Go to ODEP’s SAW/RTW webpage for News & Events.  The text of the RFP for Technical Assistance is there.    https://www.dol.gov/odep/topics/SAW-RTW/news-events.htm

 

Now all you/we have to do is find a company that has an 847.7 GSA schedule to partner with – and write a great proposal.    May the best team win!   

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

From ODEP - RETAIN Updates -- TA Solicitation & Grant Application Deadline Reminder

Jennifer Christian MD
 

FYI, see below.   This RFP is actually a “task order.”  It is only visible to organizations that already have a “GSA schedule” – which means they are pre-contracted with the Government and are now bidding on this individual task.  If you want to participate and are not already part of an organization like that, go find one!

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

 

From: RETAIN Demonstration Projects <SAW-RTW@...>
Sent: Sunday, July 22, 2018 10:07 PM
To: RETAIN Demonstration Projects <SAW-RTW@...>
Subject: RE: RETAIN Updates -- TA Solicitation & Grant Application Deadline Reminder

 

Good Evening!

 

With respect to the RETAIN Technical Assistance Provider solicitation, we have been advised of the following details by the contracting office:

 

RFQ Number: 1306566

SIN: 874 7

Questions Due to Contract Specialist by Email: Friday, August 10, 2018

Proposals Due: Monday, August 20, 2018

 

Thanks for your continued interest in the RETAIN initiative!

Best regards,

 

The RETAIN Team

U.S. Department of Labor

SAW-RTW@...

 

 

 

From: RETAIN Demonstration Projects
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2018 2:25 PM
To: RETAIN Demonstration Projects <SAW-RTW@...>
Subject: RETAIN Updates -- TA Solicitation & Grant Application Deadline Reminder

 

Good Afternoon!

 

Thanks for your continued interest in the RETAIN Demonstration Projects. This is a friendly reminder that applications are due two weeks from today – no later than 4:00 p.m. ET on Friday, August 3, 2018. We are excited to see the proposals many of you have been working so hard on!

 

In addition, please be advised that the solicitation for the RETAIN Technical Assistance Provider contract was published this week on GSA eBuy. The Request for Quotes number is 1306566. Please feel free to share this information with anyone who may be interested in applying.

 

Best regards,

 

The RETAIN Team

U.S. Department of Labor

SAW-RTW@...

 

Systematic review of SAW-RTW Interventions for Common Mental Disorders

Jennifer Christian MD
 

SAW/RTW interventions that reduce work disability for workers with mental health problems has been viewed by many as uncharted territory.  A new systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence concerning interventions for that population reveals that significant progress in understanding what works is now available.  Full text article is attached.

Here are the excerpts I found most relevant, and pasted below my signature is a table that summarizes the current evidence concerning specific types of intervention.  Bottom line:  Communication with the workplace is the MAIN THING that we know works!

 

From Methodology:  “The studies selected for review were peer-reviewed, randomized or controlled studies assessing employment-related outcomes of interventions aimed at sick-listed workers with anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, adjustment disorders, stress-related disorders, personality disorders and/or somatoform disorders.  Employment-related outcomes were defined broadly as (1) time until RTW; (2) proportion of participants achieving RTW, (3) number of sick leave days, and (4) self-reported work-readiness.”    A total of 42 articles were eventually selected for review, covering almost 39,000 workers.   10 were high control randomized controlled trials (RCTs).  31 were fair quality RCTs.  The 8 remaining were controlled studies of fair to poor quality.

 

From Discussion:   Overall, the result revealed a significant, but relatively small, positive effects of the included interventions – similar to the effect size reported in a systematic review of CBT-interventions to facilitate RTW among sick-listed workers with common mental disorders. …[E]ffect sizes of this magnitude still carry considerable economic value.

 

From Abstract:  “Conclusions:   The results reveal strong evidence for interventions including contact to the work place and multicomponent interventions and moderate evidence for interventions including graded RTW. In addition, the results provide strong evidence for interventions targeting stress compared with interventions targeting other mental disorders. The findings point to important implications for policy and design of future interventions.

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

Webility Corporation

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md

 

RFP for Technical Assistance has been released

Jennifer Christian MD
 

The RFP for Technical Assistance to RETAIN is now available  -- but it is NOT AVAILABLE to everyone.  

The RFP is accessible ONLY to organizations that ALREADY HAVE A PRE-EXISTING CONTRACT to provide services to the US Government.   The RFP is asking those organizations to bid on this particular piece of work.  

Entities (and individuals) that do not have these pre-existing arrangements are NOT ELIGIBLE to bid -- but can most likely serve as sub-contractors or consultants.

So if you want to participate, get in touch with an organization that is a "GSA Schedule Holder" --  Someone from ODEP used that term to describe the entities who would receive the announcement of the Technical Assistance RFP.   The short-form term is TA.

If anyone has seen the text of the actual RFP for TA, please let us know some juicy details -- like WHO can bid and what the Statement of Work looks like!

Cordially,
Jennifer Christian


From: RETAIN Demonstration Projects <SAW-RTW@...>
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2018 2:25 PM
To: RETAIN Demonstration Projects <SAW-RTW@...>
Subject: RETAIN Updates -- TA Solicitation & Grant Application Deadline Reminder

Good Afternoon!

Thanks for your continued interest in the RETAIN Demonstration Projects. This is a friendly reminder that applications are due two weeks from today – no later than 4:00 p.m. ET on Friday, August 3, 2018. We are excited to see the proposals many of you have been working so hard on!

In addition, please be advised that the solicitation for the RETAIN Technical Assistance Provider contract was published this week on GSA eBuy. The Request for Quotes number is 1306566. Please feel free to share this information with anyone who may be interested in applying.

Best regards,

The RETAIN Team

U.S. Department of Labor

SAW-RTW@...

 

Two specific pieces of your RETAIN proposal - preliminary thoughts

Jennifer Christian
 

You may have already figured this out, but one group asked me to think with them about two parts of the proposal:   (1) Project Logic Model to illustrate Theory of Change  and (2) Organizational Chart.

Here is my very first whack at these pieces – generating some ideas that might be helpful in getting you started.  Some of you are WAY more experienced in writing up proposals and project plans than I am -- but very FEW of us are accustomed to having so many disparate entities involved.   Discussing these things with others would probably improve these ideas and cause better ones to emerge.  But here’s at least some preliminary thoughts.   

1.   Project Logic Model to Illustrate Theory of Change.  Five minutes of Google searching was very worthwhile.   I Googled these words:  Project Logic Model Template, and then clicked on Images.    Instantly clarified the basic nature of the work product.  And then I think you will get a lot out of looking at some of the non-image items.  University of Wisconsin looks like it has very useful stuff.    Attached is an excel template for a logic model worksheet from the University of Arkansas Agricultural something or other. 

Here is how I see it:  Fundamentally, for RETAIN a project logic model should tell a graphical story about your main idea:  what you are going to to improve outcome with a pithy explanation of how/why each thing contributes to the whole.  It must be a highly simplified graphical depiction of the chain of events you are putting in place that are intended to improve AGGREGATE outcomes of MANY INDIVIDUAL CASES, each box annotated with pithy little statements.   So your Logic Model should spell out the specific change that each major interaction the project staff is going to have with the key stakeholders will accomplish – HOW and WHY it will avoid an unfortunate outcome or increase the likelihood of a good one.    

Please do remember this:   most of the risk factors that create NEEDLESS work disability actually reside in the BRAINS / MINDS of the stakeholders:  the emotions, memories, knowledge, beliefs, expectations and intentions they have as well as the  decisions they make.   Here are two examples:  A doctor who doesn't even THINK of (and/or doesn't KNOW HOW or is UNWILLING to take the time) to provide practical guidance to patients on the specific activities they should / can be doing during recovery may unwittingly send a message to his/her patient that working in his/her condition is unsafe and the patient has to sit around until he/she gets all better.  An employer who refuses to provide light duty is usually doing it because they have never even heard of or considered the idea, do not know that working during recovery will benefit their worker, do not know they have an obligation to abide by FMLA or make reasonable accommodations or how to play their role,  have competing priorities, bad past experience, lack of know-how, lack of awareness that a practical solution exists, or lack of money, 

So, your project logic model should probably explicitly state that the ACTIVE INGREDIENTS in your staff’s activities include the transmission of knowledge, perspective, encouragement, know-how, confidence, etc.  as well as problem-solving skills, simple workarounds or technical solutions, or money.  

For example, your statement that you are going to recruit, train and coach physicians/healthcare providers and pay them to deliver best practices would read:  

RECRUIT, TRAIN, PAY & ON-GOINGLY REMIND MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS WHEN AND HOW TO DELIVER 4 SPECIFIC BEST PRACTICES .  THIS  WILL INCREASE THE NUMBER OF WORKERS IN THE DESIGNATED AREA WHO

(a) RECEIVE TIMELY AND APPROPRIATE GUIDANCE RE: FUNCTION & SAW/RTW AT ONSET OF WORK DISABILITY, AND

(b) RECEIVE A REFERRAL TO THE COHE FOR SAW/RTW COORDINATION SERVICES FROM THEIR CLINICIAN WHEN WORK ABSENCE EXCEEDS 2 WEEKS.

I've attached two documents that might be useful: 

(a) the How to Mitigate Risk Factors flow chart from the report on Improving Pain Management and Support for Workers with Musculoskeletal Disorders and

(b) the table showing specific Gaps that Create Work disability (Lucky vs. Unlucky People)  that is Appendix ii in our original proposal for a Community Focused Health & Work Service.      

2.  Organizational Charts:    My first impulse is to imagine three versions, each of which shows a different level /nature of detail:

a.  Describe administrative relationship among entities: one box for State DOL (shown as grant fiscal authority/ project with name of designated lead individual);  with dotted line to one box for Leadership Team with a list of organizational members and individual names) :  (c) dotted line to one box for Advisory Board (with same kind of details as Leadership Team), (d) straight line to contracted project management entity (if any) overseeing (e) contracted COHE-equivalent, and contracted ER-services entity, and any other direct service delivery entities.   And dotted line to TA contractor and Evaluation contractor.

b.  Delegation of functions to, among, and within  entities - i.e. overall Federal project management, overall project operations and direction;  budget/fiscal accountability;   bill payment and incentive payment for services delivered;   information handling, data capture, and IT infrastructure management;  clinical / medical oversight;  direct delivery of clinical/medical best practices;   delivery of telephonic RTW Coordinator services;  delivery of more intensive functional rehabilitation or vocationally-related services to individuals;  worksite-site delivery of employment support services;  medical community relations; employer community relations;

c. Relationships among named individuals in the involved entities who play key project roles - perhaps color coded by the entity that houses them.    

So, for example, the Grant Manager (who manages the cooperate agreement / demonstration project and interfaces primarily with US DOL) might be located in the State DOL.

The Program Operations leadership team that oversees / integrates the entire service delivery side of the program may be located elsewhere.  The service delivery side has THREE ARMS:  those delivered by (a) community physicians, (b) the RTW Coordinators (with their medical /clinical back-up) and (c)  by the employment services sector – either through public agencies or through contractors.   The composition of the Demonstration Program Operations team might be the Operations Director (team leader) who has general management expertise; a Clinical Director, a Program Medical Advisor, an Employment Supports Director, a Director of Administration, and the Grant Manager.   

If a separate entity is being set up to house the RTW Coordinators and their clinical back up (which I personally recommend), that entity will require its own operations director and medical director.  Part of their responsibility is to liaise with the Demonstration Program Operations Director / Clinical Director / Program Medical Advisor.

 

Re: Hello to all from #ND #MN

Micahel Toth DO
 

Hi Megan,

I am an occ doc with family medicine background and pain management experience. I have spent much of my career trying to prevent disability in injured workers. I am interested in the concept of RETAINers. I am located near Rochester and would be happy to work with anyone local who is interested in this project. Have you made contact with anyone in the state? Thanks.

Mike Toth DO
mgtoth@...


Sent with ProtonMail Secure Email.

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐ Original Message ‐‐‐‐‐‐‐

On July 6, 2018 2:56 AM, Askelson,Megan <MEGAN.ASKELSON@...> wrote:

Hello,

I work in Occupational Health in MN/ND. I am interested in getting more people back to the work force safely. Very interested in this program and whatever I can do to help. #MN #ND

Thanks!

Megan Askelson, FNP-C
Sanford Health Occupational Medicine
1705 Anne St NW Bemidji MN 56601
 
218-333-4735 Main Clinic
218-333-4740 (O)
218-234-3526 (C)
 


IN REPLY TO JENNIFER CHRISTIAN WHO WROTE:

Over the last week, our RETAINers group added more than 30 occupational health professionals.   Let’s try to get them connected with the state agencies and others from their states here on RETAINers. 

I’ve created 50 hashtags – one for each of the 50 states, e.g. #AK, #CA, #NC and so on.   EVERYONE, pls send a brief email introducing yourself with your contact information – like Michelle Edwards and Laura Dinsmore just did – and include your state and its hashtag in the subject line.   Groups.io (which hosts our group) will then allow us to sort messages by hashtags.

 


RETAIN in Texas #TX

Barrett, Karen <karenbarrett@...>
 

Dear Retainers,

 

I am a certified occupational health nurse specialist that has been in Occupational Health x 39 years. I would love to work with the Texas group. We have both Workers’ Comp and Non-Subscribers options in Texas. My current position is with a non-subscriber health system (hospitals, physician offices and free standing clinics and urgent care clinics) in the Dallas/Ft, Worth area.

 

I look forward to hearing from any others in Texas.

 

Karen Barrett, RN, COHN-S, CHSP, FAAOHN  

Director  |  Employee Health  |  MHS

karenbarrett@...  |  214.947.6520

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jennifer Christian MD
Sent: Monday, July 09, 2018 9:01 PM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Cc: jennifer.christian@...; jhchristian@...
Subject: [RETAINers] RETAIN is a first step towards establishing accountability for job loss following injury/illness

 

CAUTION: This email came from an EXTERNAL sender. Do not open attachments or click on links from unknown senders or unexpected emails. Forward any suspicious emails to SpamAdmin@...

 

One way to look at RETAIN is as a beginning – of a long-term effort to START establishing accountability within government and to a lesser extent within other sectors of the economy for preventing needless work disability (preventable job loss / withdrawal from the workforce). 

Today, few people recognize worklessness as a very poor outcome of a health problem that develops in a working person – and yet it is definitely that.  There is a cascade of manifold negative consequences to physical and emotional health, as well as family, social, and economic well-being that occur when formerly independent working people lose their livelihood and enter a life of dependency on government benefits.

See powerpoint attached – a summary of the policy paper I wrote on Establishing Accountability to Reduce Job Loss after Illness/Injury while serving as a member of the Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work Policy Collaborative sponsored by the US Dept of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) that is now managing RETAIN.   Full text is also attached.    Reading pages 1-7 will give you all the main ideas.

When ODEP commissioned this paper, and I started thinking about this issue, I suddenly saw that TODAY, none of the three stakeholders on the front lines -- those called upon to respond at the time that a working person develops an injury or illness -- feels ANY accountability for preventing job loss or workforce withdrawal.  Those three front-line stakeholders are the treating physician or other healthcare practitioner, the employer, and the benefits claims payer – if there is one.  And this issue has not been on ANY government agency's radar.  Yet, when the individuals who lose their job end up on public disability-related programs, it is the taxpayers who end up holding the bag and paying for that lack of accountability.

BTW, if you get the daily digest of RETAINers emails (that combines all messages for the previous day) you can go to our website and look for MESSAGES -- and open the attachments there.

Cordially,
Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH
President / Chief Medical Officer
Webility Corporation
95 Woodridge Road
Wayland, MA 01778
Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)
Mobile:  617-803-9835
Email: jennifer.christian@...
Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com
Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

 

***********************************************************************

This electronic transmission contains information from Methodist Health
System and should be considered confidential and privileged. The
information contained in the above messages is intended only for the
use of the individual(s) and entity(ies) named above. If you are not the
intended recipient, be aware that any disclosure, copying, distribution,
or use of this information is prohibited. If you receive this transmission
in error, please notify the sender immediately by return e-mail.
Methodist Health System, its subsidiaries and affiliates hereby claim all
applicable privileges related to the transmission of this communication.

FL state agency seeks occ docs to help with RETAIN bid #FL

Jennifer Christian MD
 

A request for assistance finding some occupational medicine physicians (or other occupational health professionals with expertise in the SAW/RTW process) came into ACOEM from the FL Dept of Economic Opportunity.  Please get in touch with me – I can connect you.   Or, if you already have a good contact there, get in touch with them!

 

Cordially,

Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH

President / Chief Medical Officer

Webility Corporation

95 Woodridge Road

Wayland, MA 01778

Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)

Mobile:  617-803-9835

Email: jennifer.christian@...

 

Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com

Website:  www.webility.md