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Essential Community Providers
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the definition of "high-risk, special needs, and underserved"?
The Essential Community Provider Rule (Minnesota Rules Chapter 4688) refers to Minnesota Statutes 62Q.07, subd. 2 (e) for the definition of high risk, special needs. That statute was repealed in 2001. Since there is no other definition of high risk, special needs in the ECP statute or rule, the Minnesota Department of Health uses the repealed definition when reviewing applications to be designated as ECPs. That definition is:
Minnesota Statutes 62Q.07, subd. 2 (e) (repealed in 2001)
"High risk and special needs populations" includes, but is not limited to, recipients of medical assistance, general assistance medical care, and MinnesotaCare; persons with chronic conditions or disabilities; individuals within certain racial, cultural, and ethnic communities; individuals and families with low income; adolescents; the elderly; individuals with limited or no English language proficiency; persons with high-cost preexisting conditions; homeless persons; chemically dependent persons; persons with serious and persistent mental illness and children with severe emotional disturbance; and persons who are at high-risk of requiring treatment.
"Underserved" refers to a population or group of people with inadequate access to health care services.
What is the process for reviewing ECP applications?
Upon receipt of an application for designation as an Essential Community Provider, the Minnesota Department of Health reviews the application for compliance with Minnesota Statutes 62Q.19 and Minnesota Rules, Part 4688. The Department publishes a notice that the application has been received in the State Register, and solicits comments from the Interested parties are allowed 30 days from the date of publication to submit written comments on an application.
At the end of the public comment period, MDH conducts an on-site visit. This visit is an opportunity to discuss program elements; verify the details of the application; and establish a working relationship with key staff members of the organization. Upon completion of the on-site visit, the visiting staff member recommends that the Commissioner approve or deny the application.
If approved, the applicant receives a letter and certificate designating approval for 5 years. If denied, the applicant is provided the reason(s) in writing.
I just finished renewing the ECP designation for my organization. Do I need to file an annual report?
All ECPs must file an annual report, even those that only recently were designated or renewed as ECPs. Most of the information requested in the annual report is also in the application. Most of this information will not have changed for recently designated or renewed ECPs, and can simply be reviewed, revised if necessary, and resubmitted.