ASHA Reimbursement Issues Grant: Procedures and Guidelines
ASHA is offering personnel grants and reimbursement grants to state associations for the 2015 calendar year. ASHA reimbursement grants advance state-level grassroots projects to improve private health plan and Medicaid reimbursement and coverage for member services and assistive technology devices. Personnel grants can be used to address personnel issues, such as: personnel shortages, caseload/workload, and advocacy. States may apply for both types of grants, but a separate application must be submitted for each. Past receipt of an ASHA grant award does not preclude a state association from applying for or receiving a reimbursement or personnel grant.
Reimbursement Issues Grant 2015 Application
This grant application is related to the 2015 Reimbursement Grant. To apply for a Personnel Grant from ASHA, please go to the Personnel Issues Grant Application.
May 26, 2015: Completed application (Project Proposal Form, Resource Allocation Form, and Budget Proposal Form) due to ASHA.
June 12, 2015: Applicants will be notified of grant decisions.
June 17, 2015: Grant recipients submit signed agreements.
December 7, 2015: End of year grant reports due.
Applications that are incomplete or received after the May 26, 2015, deadline will not be considered for a grant. You may wish to e-mail the appropriate project officer to verify receipt. Contact information is listed at the end of this document.
You may request feedback on your application at any time after submission. However, applications may not be revised and re-submitted. ASHA reserves the right to provide such feedback after grant award decisions are finalized.
Grant Decision and Payment of Funds
A team of National Office staff carefully reviews all grant applications and makes grant award determinations in a confidential process. There is a review team for each grant category (personnel and reimbursement).
The amount of each grant will be determined at ASHA's sole discretion, in accordance with the methods described in this document and application materials. A maximum of $4,000 per application may be awarded. ASHA's decisions on grant awards and amounts are final.
The grant funds will be paid by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in one lump sum at the beginning of the grant cycle after all required documentation has been received from the state association.
Due to the shortened grant cycle in 2015, it is acceptable for grant activities to extend beyond the 2015 calendar year, including use of grant funds, if necessary. However, the grant and expense reports, due December 7, 2015, should demonstrate substantial progress towards desired outcomes. As such, grant proposals should focus on manageable activities and goals.
Grant Reports, which include a Grant Summary and Expense Form, are due by December 7, 2015. The Grant Summary must give details about outcomes or progress towards outcomes from the grant project in one page or less. Documentation of the expenses with receipts, proof of payment, invoices marked paid, or similar items must be included with the report. A list of expenses without documentation of association payment will not be acceptable. Both the Grant Summary and Expense Form must be acknowledged by the state association president.
Types of Projects
ASHA will consider funding advocacy projects that clearly promote progress on a substantiated reimbursement or coverage issue in private health plans or Medicaid. Projects may require working with state legislators, state insurance commissions, state Medicaid agency officials, other advocacy groups, the insurance industry, unions, or employers. The 2015 grants will not be awarded for activities in areas other than private health plan reimbursement or Medicaid. Examples of feasible grant project goals include:
- Hold meetings with appropriate stakeholders to develop topics and materials to prepare for meetings with legislators to lobby for specific improvements in private-sector or Medicaid coverage or reimbursement for member services
- Establish an advocacy coalition of allied organizations to meet with a union's benefits manager to promote improved audiology or speech-language pathology benefits for union members
- Advocate one or more local employers to give employees better health care coverage for services of audiologists or speech-language pathologists
Grants will not be awarded for projects related to any type of federally funded government health care program, such as Medicare, IDEA-mandated school programs, non-Medicaid state programs, military, or veterans' programs.
Use of Grant Funds
Grant funds are intended to support state association activities directly related to the grant projects set forth in proposals. Typically, grant funds are used for:
- external consultants
- travel and other reasonable expenses for project team members to attend grant-related meetings
- supplies or equipment needed to carry out grant projects
- media access
Grant funds are not intended for and shall not be used for the following:
- Personal gain of any type, including compensation (money or "in kind"), to project managers, state association presidents, or others, to perform grant-related activities. This includes reimbursement for lost practice time or for taking work leave for grant activities, conference calls, and the like. Participation is anticipated to be either in the capacity as association officers and/or as grant volunteers.
- Equipment or supplies (e.g., computers, other electronic devices) that are (a) gratuitous because they are not primarily required for grant activities or (b) primarily given or used as someone's personal possession, rather than being the association's possession loaned for grant activities.
- Education or training of audiologists, speech-language pathologists, or other providers in clinical practice.
- Travel or otherwise to attend meetings, conferences, etc., that do not directly further the goals of the grant project. For example, an association president may not use grant funds to underwrite attendance at a general conference for association officers; funds may not be used for travel to ASHA's annual Convention.
- Travel expenses (e.g., days, hotel, mileage, meals) for any more than is required to attend a grant-related meeting.
- Services of external consultants, lobbyists, or others beyond what is necessary to carry out grant activities that cannot be reasonably accomplished otherwise. We recommend that the state association require independent contractors to provide proposals outlining intended fees, services, purpose, deliverables, and their submission dates specific to the grant project prior to hire.
- Education or information targeted to patients, providers, or organizations that does not directly advocate for equitable coverage and reimbursement from private health plans or Medicaid.
- Issues related to federally funded government health care programs, including Medicare and Veterans' Affairs. Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) plan issues are permissible if they concern a private health plan doing business only in the state (not a multi-state or national plan).
Every effort should be made to utilize available technologies (e.g., Skype™, conference calls, GoToMeetings®) for meetings, when appropriate. Reimbursed air travel, car rental, and hotel accommodations for face-to-face meetings is not encouraged and will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Charges or reimbursement claims should be invoiced directly to the state association that received the grant, not to any intermediaries. If grant funds are kept in a separate account, payments and expenses related to the grant should be allocated from that grant account and must be properly accounted for.
Conflicts of Interest
Associations are to avoid conflicts of interest with regard to spending grant funds. Payments to state association officers may not be solely self-approved.
2015—Phase 2 Projects
We are offering 2014 grant recipients the opportunity to apply for a Phase 2 grant in 2015, which would build upon 2014 grant projects. ASHA will hold a limited number of 2015 grant slots for Phase 2 applicants; however, award of a Phase 2 grant is not guaranteed, as new applications will also be considered.
Project officers are assigned to each grant category. Please submit applications online and direct questions on the reimbursement issues grant to Neela Swanson.
Reimbursement Grants Project Officer:
Neela Swanson, director, health care coding policy
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
2200 Research Blvd. #220
Rockville, MD 20850