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Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection: Public Comment Request; Information Collection Request Title: Rural Health Care Coordination Program OMB No. 0906-0024-Reinstate With Changes

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Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Department of Health and Human Services.




In compliance with the requirement for opportunity for public comment on the proposed data collection projects of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, HRSA announces plans to submit an Information Collection Request (ICR), described below, to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Prior to submitting the ICR to OMB, HRSA seeks comments from the public regarding the burden estimate, below, or any other aspect of the ICR.


Comments on this ICR should be received no later than January 29, 2021.


Submit your comments to or mail the HRSA Information Collection Clearance Officer, Room 14N136B, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857.

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To request more information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and draft instruments, email or call Lisa Wright-Solomon, the HRSA Information Collection Clearance Officer at (301) 443-1984.

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When submitting comments or requesting information, please include the information request collection title for reference.

Information Collection Request Title: Rural Health Care Coordination Program OMB No. 0906-0024—Reinstate with Changes.

Abstract: The Rural Health Care Coordination Program (Care Coordination Program) is authorized under Section 330A(e) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 254(e)), as amended, to “improve access and quality of care through the application of care coordination strategies with the focus areas of collaboration, leadership and workforce, improved outcomes, and sustainability in rural communities.” This authority permits HRSA's Federal Office of Rural Health Policy to support rural health consortiums/networks aiming to achieve the overall goals of improving access, delivery, and quality of care through the application of care coordination strategies in rural communities.

This ICR was discontinued in January 2020. HRSA is requesting a reinstatement with changes as it was decided to re-compete this pilot program.

The proposed Rural Health Care Coordination Program draft measures for information collection reflect changes to the Clinical Measures section, which was previously in section eight and now currently in section six. The Clinical Measures Section now expands previous project focus from three chronic diseases (i.e. Type 2 diabetes, Congestive Heart Failure, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) to an inclusive list of clinical measures in order to reflect a patient's overall health and well-being as well as the organization's overall improved outcomes for the project. Proposed revisions also include measures to examine key elements cited for a successful rural care coordination program: (1) Collaboration, (2) leadership and workforce, (3) improved outcomes, and (4) sustainability.

1. Collaboration—Utilizing a collaborative approach to coordinate and deliver health care services through a consortium, in which member organizations actively engage in integrated, coordinated, patient-centered delivery of health care services.

2. Leadership and Workforce—Developing and strengthening a highly skilled care coordination workforce to respond to vulnerable populations' unmet needs within the rural communities.

3. Improved Outcomes—Expanding access and improving care quality and delivery, and health outcomes through evidence-based model and/or promising practices tailored to meet the local populations' needs.

4. Sustainability—Developing and strengthening care coordination program's financial sustainability by establishing effective revenue sources such as expanded service reimbursement, resource sharing, and/or contributions from partners at the Start Printed Page 76586community, county, regional, and state levels.

With the continuing shift in the healthcare environment towards provision of value-based care and utilization of reimbursement strategies through Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services quality reporting programs, the latest competitive Rural Health Care Coordination Program cohort also aligned with this shift. An increased number of sophisticated applicants leveraging increasingly intricate reporting methodologies for quality data collection, utilization and analysis has resulted in an estimate of burden hours more in line with the realities of the health care landscape. In addition, the total number of responses has increased to 10 since the previous Notice of Award. This is due to a new Rural Health Care Coordination Program grant cycle with an increased number of awardees and therefore an increased number of respondents.

Need and Proposed Use of the Information: For this program, performance measures were drafted to provide data to the program and to enable HRSA to provide aggregate program data required by Congress under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993. These measures cover the principal topic areas of interest to the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, including: (a) Access to care; (b) population demographics; (c) staffing; (d) consortium/network; (e) sustainability; and (f) project specific domains. All measures will speak to HRSA's progress toward meeting the goals set.

Likely Respondents: Recipients of the Rural Health Care Coordination Program funding.

Burden Statement: Burden in this context means the time expended by persons to generate, maintain, retain, disclose or provide the information requested. This includes the time needed to review instructions; to develop, acquire, install, and utilize technology and systems for the purpose of collecting, validating, and verifying information, processing and maintaining information, and disclosing and providing information; to train personnel and to be able to respond to a collection of information; to search data sources; to complete and review the collection of information; and to transmit or otherwise disclose the information. The total annual burden hours estimated for this ICR are summarized in the table below.

Total Estimated Annualized Burden Hours

Form nameNumber of respondentsNumber of responses per respondentTotal responsesAverage burden per response (in hours)Total burden hours
Rural Health Care Coordination Grant Program Measures101103.535

HRSA specifically requests comments on: (1) The necessity and utility of the proposed information collection for the proper performance of the agency's functions, (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden, (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected, and (4) the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology to minimize the information collection burden.

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Maria G. Button,

Director, Executive Secretariat.

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[FR Doc. 2020-26254 Filed 11-27-20; 8:45 am]