NCMS Morning Rounds 7-1-20

Welcome to July and your

NCMS Morning Rounds.

  July 1, 2020

NCCARE360 Now Available in All 100 NC Counties

NCCARE360, the nation’s first statewide technology platform that unites traditional health care settings and organizations that address non-medical drivers of health, such as food, housing, transportation, employment and interpersonal safety, is now available in all 100 counties in North Carolina.

The platform, developed through a public-private partnership, enables health and community-based organizations to make electronic referrals, communicate in real time, securely share client information, and track outcomes together. You or your patients who need assistance can search NCCARE360’s repository of more than 10,000 local services at, access resources by calling 2-1-1, or complete an online form at

“Having this critical infrastructure in place puts our state in a stronger position to address the devastating impact COVID-19 is having on so many of our residents and to help us recover. NCCARE360 brings to life the state’s vision that all North Carolinians have the opportunity for health and well-being,” said North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen, MD, MPH.

NCCARE360 completed its statewide rollout six months ahead of schedule, fast-tracking the statewide expansion in response to COVID-19.

“NCCARE360 is a model for the nation. It breaks down silos that create barriers to needed care and services – particularly in rural communities – and exacerbate health disparities. It was critical before COVID-19, and it is even more so now,” said Georgina Dukes, Unite Us Network Director.

NCCARE360 is the result of a public-private partnership between NCDHHS and the Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation (FHLI). The NCCARE360 implementation team includes United Way of NC, NC 2-1-1, Expound Decision Systems, and Unite Us.

Research has established that having an unmet resource need — including experiencing food insecurity, housing instability, unmet transportation needs and interpersonal violence or toxic stress — can negatively impact health while also increasing health care utilization and costs. These non-medical drivers have the greatest impact on health, yet historically the human services and health care systems have been fragmented and siloed.

July is Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental health conditions do not discriminate based on race, color, gender or identity. However, background and identity can make access to mental health treatment much more difficult. National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month was established in 2008 to start changing this. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has a wealth of resources to help raise awareness around the unique and heightened challenges many communities face around health coverage and the stigma of mental illness.

The NAMI docuseries, Strength Over Silence: Stories of Courage, Culture and Community, highlights perspectives on mental health from the African American and Latinx communities. Through candid and courageous stories of lived experience, these mental health champions share their resilience and recovery.

Learn more about Minority Mental Health Awareness Month and how you can help raise awareness.

2021 NCMS Photo Contest is Underway!

We currently are accepting your photo submissions – send us your best shot by the July 31, 2020 deadline. Please submit your most fabulous photo(s), but please note that only high-resolution images (300 dpi minimum; print size at least 10 inches wide) will be accepted.

This year we will not be offering a printed version of the 2021 calendar, but will publish an online calendar that will be designed so you can print it out. All the rules – and the prizes for the winning entries – will remain the same.

As in previous years, there will be four main categories for submissions:
• North Carolina
• Nature
• Travel
• Wildlife

You can provide details on the name of the photo, your name, town and specialty as well as details about the camera you used to take your picture on this standard photo release form. It will be interesting to see how many great shots were taken on cell phones versus traditional cameras this year.

Review the rules and prizes to be awarded here. Questions? Please contact Kristen Shipherd at

In the News

Conflicting COVID Messages Create Cloud of Confusion Around Public Health and Prevention, Kaiser Health News, 6-29-20

Learning Opportunity

Join Brian King, PhD, MPH, Deputy Director for Research Translation in the Office on Smoking and Health (OSH) within the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this Thursday, July 2 from 1 to 2 p.m. for a webinar on ‘The Rise of E-cigarettes: Implications for Public Health.’

Dr. King will discuss the latest information on youth e-cigarette use, including JUUL, and what can be done to protect youth from this preventable health risk. The presentation will describe the evolution of the e-cigarette landscape in the United States, discuss why youth are drawn to e-cigarettes and the health risks they face when using these products, and outline actions that can be taken to reduce these risks. Register here.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!


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