Consumers’ Committee Meeting Minutes June 18, 2019


Tuesday, June 18, 2019 1:10PM – 3:10PM
LGBT Center, 208 West 13th Street, NY, NY

Planning Council Members Present: Billy Fields (Co-Chair), Lisa Best (Co-Chair), Atif Abdul-Haaq, Randall Bruce, Paul Carr, Charmaine Graham,Saul Reyes (Consumer At Large), John Schoepp
Committee Members Absent: Asia Betancourt, Maria Diaz, Justin LiGreci, Monique Mackey, Jesus Maldonado, Malaya Mañacop,
NYCDOHMH:  David Klotz, Jose Colon-Berdecia, Kristina Rodriguez, Kimbirly Mack
NYSDOH AIDS Institute: Tracy Hatton
Others: Ron Joyner, David Martin, Leonardo Ruiz, Rob Walker


Billy Fields and Lisa Best, Consumers Committee Co-Chairs, opened the meeting, followed by introductions and a moment of silence.  The May 21, 2019 minutes were approved with no changes.  The Committee sent their thoughts and prayers to Darryl as he deals with family issues.

Agenda Item # 2: Public Comment  

Billy distributed a recruitment flyer for training to become a census employee.   Lisa announced that the Westchester County government formally recognized LGBTQ Pride for the first time.

It was noted that this is Billy’s last Consumers Committee meeting as chair.  Also, Saul’s term as a Council member expires at the end of August.  The Committee and staff thanked both for their leadership and dedication.  Billy and Saul thanked the Committee members, adding that the Committee is stronger than ever and has become a vital part of the fabric of the Planning Council.

  • The Needs Assessment Committee is working on developing recommendations for the disability community.There will be a town hall on improving access for PLWH with disabilities on June 20th.  A draft of the recommendations was distributed and reviewed, including:allowable uses of Ryan White Part A (RWPA) funds for assistive technologies (e.g., portable hearing loop); improved data collection on disabilities within the RWPA system; training providers on how to provide reasonable accommodations and using patient data to create service plans; providing guidance on compliance with laws governing accessibility; identifying funding that providers can use to ensure compliance; ensuring that clients know their rights; and identifying gaos in access for individual assistive technologies.  David M. expressed concern that attendees who are visually impaired be accommodated at the Forum.  
  • The Oral Health Sub-Committee of the Needs Assessment Committee completed its work and submitted a set of recommendations to fill unmet needs for dental and oral health services in NYC to the full NAC, which approved the recommendations.  The recommendations will be reviewed and voted on by the Executive Committee tomorrow.  After the EC and Council approve it, it will go to the Integration of Care Committee (IOC) to develop a formal service directive, then to PSRA to determine an allocation.  The timing means that it will be in the FY 2021 grant application with services beginning in March 2021.  Paul reviewed the recommendations, which include:

Fund Part A Oral Health Services in NYC.  Where coverage is available, e.g., Medicaid and ADAP, needed services are not included or easily available, (e.g., gum and bone grafts, crown and bridgework, partials/implants when one tooth is missing, replacements for lost/broken dentures).  Develop a screening tool with validated questions to identify oral health discomfort and issues among consumers, ensure linkage to oral health services, and develop health education modules that incorporate the need for dental services and oral hygiene.  Dental case management within dental programs can afford the opportunity to address social isolation, reduce anxiety and improve consumer engagement and education.  Linkage Agreements to Specialized, Complex and Emergency Services, including Provide coverage for implants and other highly specialized services i.e. crowns, orthodontia, and gum & bone grafting on a case-by-case basis.  Support the Use of Quality Dental Materials, including Allow the use of food vouchers for electric toothbrushes (such as Quip) and other oral hygiene products.  Recommend comprehensive, preventative and recurring dental services and procedures.  Ensure coverage of at least 4 dental cleanings per year.  Develop provider recommendations for common co-morbidities, i.e. Diabetes, Hepatitis C, HPV.  Require trainings that address stigma among dental providers.  Complement Medicaid and ADAP services to ensure a robust system of care.  Provider & consumer guidance on how viral load impacts oral care.  Support data sharing and case conferences to comprehensively treat patients

  • The Mental Health Sub-Committee of the Needs Assessment Committeeis continuing to meet to discuss the needs of the Seriously Mentally Ill living with HIV/AIDS.
  • The IOC is meeting tomorrow to finish up its last Standards of Care.
  • IOC TGNB Sub-Committeehad a great meeting last week where they heard from a range of consumers and advocates about TGNB issues, particularly around housing, abuse and harm.
  • The Priority Setting/Resource Allocation Committee(PSRA) approved theFY 2020 Base, MAI and Tri-County Spending Plans for the Grant Application.  HRSA will likely again cap the amount that an EMA can request in its grant application to a maximum of 5% over its current Base award.  The Base NYC and Tri-County plans call for a 5% increase.  MAI, which is completely formula-driven, remains stable at the current year’s funding level.  As the majority of the service portfolio in Tri-County is newly re-bid, there is no data on spending that can be used to make adjustments in the service category allocations.  Thus, the 5% increase is allocated across the portfolio proportionately based on the service category ranking scores.  The NYC Base portion of the requested increase is distributed in targeted increases to four categories, based on PSRA’s analysis of trends in over-spending and utilization: Food & Nutrition, Housing, Supportive Counseling, Legal Services.  The application spending request is theoretical, but must be justifiable in the grant application narrative based on data.  PSRA will have the fall and winter to do scenario planning for an actual increase or decrease to the award. 

Kristina and Tracy presented on the theme of this year’s QI conference: “Using Unexpected Results to Improve Performance”.  The theme emphasizes that trial and error are essential to the process of improving.  The intent is for attendees to learn from the process of QI, including steps that did not work.  Consumers Committee input will be important, so that attendees can learn from the client perspective about successes and failures in service provision.  The Committee is urged to be creative in thinking about how the theme can be applied to service improvement by all RWPA stakeholders. 

There was a lengthy discussion among the Committee members about the best process for deciding on how to be involved in the Conference.  There was a general consensus that the activity should be interactive and should involve providers and not just other consumers.  Kristina and Tracy promised to provide technical assistance.  They encouraged the Committee to rehearse the final product to make sure that it fits the time frame (75-90 minutes), and to keep it focused and creative. 

There was some debate about whether or not to charge a sub-committee with developing ideas for the Conference and bring that back to the full Committee, or to have the full Committee develop a list of possible ideas.  Saul noted that the process that worked best in the past was when a sub-committee worked on the presentation/workshop and presented it to the full Committee. 

Randall made a motion to create a sub-committee that will work on consumer participation in the QI Conference and report back to the full Committee.  The motion was seconded and approved.

Two ideas that were floated by Rob and Saul were: a workshop on getting providers to understand the TGNB experience and how that impacts service delivery, and a workshop on intersectionality.  David K. will look into Darryl’s files to see what ideas were proposed in previous years.  The following members volunteered for the sub-committee: Billy, Lisa, Rob, Leo, David M., Charmaine, Paul.  David K. will also send out a notice to the rest of the Committee members.

There being no new business, the meeting was adjourned at 3:10PM.