While you and your organization are dealing with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, your Affirmant team is here to support you. On this page you will find information, resources and tools to help you address critical clinical, financial and operational issues specific to this crisis.

New Content

Different COVID-19 Vaccines (01/15/21) ▸
As COVID-19 vaccines are authorized and then recommended for use in the United States, it will be important to understand what is known about each vaccine. CDC will provide information on who is and is not recommended to receive each vaccine and what to expect after vaccination, as well as ingredients, safety, and effectiveness.

PPE Available Via HealthEquip App (01/14/21) ▸
AHA, through the 100 Million Mask Challenge, continues to work with novel manufacturers and suppliers to support hospitals’ and health systems’ PPE needs.

New COVID-19-related ICD-10-CM codes take effect (01/13/20) ▸
International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM) broke from the usual release schedule and implemented the following six new codes related to COVID-19 on Jan. 1 and issued accompanying guidelines.

FDA Statement on Following the Authorized Dosing Schedules for COVID-19 Vaccines (01/04/21) ▸
As the first round of vaccine recipients become eligible to receive their second dose, we want to remind the public about the importance of receiving COVID-19 vaccines according to how they’ve been authorized by the FDA in order to safely receive the level of protection observed in the large randomized trials supporting their effectiveness.

New COVID-19 Variants (01/03/21) ▸
Information about the characteristics of these variants is rapidly emerging. Scientists are working to learn more about how easily they might spread, whether they could cause more severe illness, and whether currently authorized vaccines will protect people against them. At this time, there is no evidence that these variants cause more severe illness or increased risk of death.

Telehealth/Doxy.me

Our team looked into multiple platforms and considered feedback from healthcare providers with telehealth expertise. Doxy.me is our recommendation.

A 20% discount for the Professional service for up to one year is available to Affirmant providers by using the coupon code: Affirmant. Providers can try the Professional version for one month and request a full refund online if they are not satisfied.

Please note all support for this service is provided through Doxy.me only and providers should not call their Chapter or health system for information or assistance.

Doxy.me Video Archive ▸
Doxy.me has short video tutorials on everything from “Clinical Account Overview” to “Setting up Payments” to “How to Start a Call”

Doxy.me – Account Features Comparison ▸
Learn about features of the free, professional and clinic subscriptions. A 20% discount for the Professional service for up to one year is available to Affirmant providers by using the coupon code: Affirmant.

Resources to Market Your Practice ▸
Resources to help you market to your telemedicine practice to your patients

Telehealth – Toolkits, Guidelines and Insights Into Telehealth

Telehealth in the Time of COVID-19 (10/23/20) ▸
Telehealth or using technology for a remote medical encounter has become an efficient solution for safe patient care during the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 or COVID-19 pandemic. This medium allows patient immediate healthcare access without the need for an in-person visit. We designed a time-sensitive, practical, effective and innovative scale-up of telehealth services as a response to the demand for COVID-19 evaluation and testing.

Qualitative Assessment of Rapid System Transformation to Primary Care Video Visits at an Academic Medical Center (10/06/20) ▸
Video visits were a key part of the overall response to the pandemic. Researchers at Stanford Health Care sought to understand facilitators and barriers to program adoption as well as the long- and short-term implications of this dramatic shift for ongoing medical care. Beginning in the third week of video visit implementation at Stanford, we conducted a primary care–wide evaluation of our video visit program through qualitative interviews with key stakeholders. There were critical issues identified to sustaining video visits long-term. Specifically, technology ease of use, role clarity, physical exam training, triage system, insurer reimbursement, patient access to smartphones or internet, and licensing jurisdictions.

FCC Extends Purchase/Implementation Deadline for COVID-19 Telehealth Program (09/28/20) ▸
The Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau has extended to Dec. 31 the deadline for recipients of COVID-19 Telehealth Program funding to purchase and implement eligible telehealth devices and services to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Toolkit for Building and Growing a Sustainable Telehealth Program in Your Practice (09/08/20) ▸
This resource offers you steps for navigating scenarios when you implement or expand your telehealth program.

Updated: Risk Adjustment Telehealth and Telephone Services During COVID-19 FAQs (08/03/20)▸
CMS has updated their FAQ on Risk Adjustment Telehealth and Telephone Services.

CDC – Using Telehealth to Expand Access to Essential Health Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic (06/10/20) ▸
This guidance describes the landscape of telehealth services and provides considerations for healthcare systems, practices and providers using telehealth services to provide virtual care during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

Telehealth Resources from American College of Physicians (06/05/20) ▸
The ACP supports the expanded role of telemedicine in the primary care setting and has put together the following resources breaking down a physician’s telehealth options, the applicable billing codes, and ACP policy guidance.

HHS Telehealth Resource Page (04/30/20) ▸
Resources for Providers, helping to navigate Telehealth.

Coding Factsheet for Telemedicine (04/13/20) ▸

CMS Nursing Home Telehealth Toolkit (03/27/20) ▸
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has broadened access to Medicare telehealth services so that beneficiaries can receive a wider range of services from their doctors without having to travel to a healthcare facility.

General Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit (03/20/20) ▸
Electronic links to reliable sources of information regarding telehealth and telemedicine.

Resources for Independent Physicians

Financial

Resources about government extensions and funding sources

HHS Updates FAQs Related to CARES Act Emergency Funds (12/11/20) ▸
The Department of Health and Human Services today released updated FAQs related to payments from the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund.

COVID-19 State and Private Payer Policies (12/10/20) ▸
Many payers, both public and private, have adjusted many rules related to payment, prior authorization, cost sharing, and enrollment. This CMS Summary provides information about all the flexibilities during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payments Program COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Payment Data (updated 12/10/20) ▸
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services expanded its Accelerated and Advance Payment (AAP) Program to increase cash flow to Medicare providers and suppliers impacted by the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency. These payments are funded from the Hospital Insurance (Part A) and Supplementary Medical Insurance (Part B) trust funds, which are the same funds used to pay Medicare claims each day.

CMS Provides Eligibility Relief for Hospitals (12/01/20) ▸
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently provided hospitals with new Medicare blanket waivers to address the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Forgiveness of Accelerated Payments for Hospitals (11/09/20) ▸
CMS has provided at least $85 billion in accelerated payments to hospitals during the past several months. These payments have served as critical life lines to hospitals and health systems, providing crucial funding to support the frontline personnel treating patients; the construction of new sites of care to minimize the virus’ spread; and the purchase of ventilators, drugs and supplies to care for the critically ill.

Grants available to help families of COVID-19 health care heroes (11/06/20) ▸
Eligible family members of front-line health care workers and volunteers who lose their lives to COVID-19 can apply to the Brave of Heart Fund for grants to support common needs such as funeral costs, medical care, counseling, food, education, mortgage payments and living expenses.

COVID-19 Practice Financial Assistance (10/02/20) ▸
There are several mechanisms in the CARES Act to assist in mitigating financial shortfalls due to COVID-19.

AHA | CMS Issues New Guidance on COVID-19 Relief Funds’ Cost Reporting (09/01/20) ▸
As urged by the AHA, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently issued guidance stating that COVID-19 Provider Relief Fund (PRF) payments and Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness funds should not be recorded as offsets to expenses on the Medicare cost report.

IRS Issues Initial Guidance on Deferral of Employee Portion of Social Security Tax (08/28/20) ▸
The Department of Treasury’s Internal Revenue Service recently issued guidance for implementing the White House’s Aug. 8 executive order on payroll taxes, which applies to wages paid Sept. 1 through Dec. 31, 2020.

Coronavirus Relief Options (07/31/20) ▸
Multiple funding options from the Small Business Administration for those seeking relief.

Labor Options

Resources for informing decisions around temporary leave versus termination

COVID-19 Health Care Jobs Portal (12/15/20) ▸
The MDHHS and LEO teamed up to launch a new portal on Pure Michigan Talent Connect that makes it easier for health care professionals to apply for jobs that provide lifesaving care to COVID-19 patients.

Unemployment Insurance Agency Fact Sheet (07/07/20) ▸
Claiming unemployment benefits in Michigan – COVID-19 Guide.

Other Resources

General

New COVID-19-related ICD-10-CM codes take effect (01/13/20) ▸
International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM) broke from the usual release schedule and implemented the following six new codes related to COVID-19 on Jan. 1 and issued accompanying guidelines.

New COVID-19 Variants (01/03/21) ▸
Information about the characteristics of these variants is rapidly emerging. Scientists are working to learn more about how easily they might spread, whether they could cause more severe illness, and whether currently authorized vaccines will protect people against them. At this time, there is no evidence that these variants cause more severe illness or increased risk of death.

Implications of the Emerging SARS-CoV-2 Variant VOC 202012/01 (12/29/20) ▸
A new variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 that contains a series of mutations has been described in the United Kingdom (UK) and become highly prevalent in London and southeast England. Based on these mutations, this variant strain has been predicted to potentially be more rapidly transmissible than other circulating strains of SARS-CoV-2.

ICD-10 Coding Guidelines, Updates Released for New COVID-19 Diagnosis Codes (12/16/20) ▸
In response to the national emergency that was declared concerning the COVID-19 outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) is implementing 6 new diagnosis codes into the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM), effective January 1, 2021.

HHS Updates Resources for Hospitals via Workforce Virtual Toolkit (12/16/20) ▸
The Department of Health and Human Services  released its COVID-19 Workforce Virtual Toolkit, which includes updated resources for hospitals. The toolkit provides a curated set of resources and tools for decision-makers managing health care workforce challenges in response to the COVID-19 emergency.

COVID-19 Science Updates (12/15/20) ▸
This series, the first of its kind for a CDC emergency response, provides brief summaries of new COVID-19-related studies on many topics, including epidemiology, clinical treatment and management, laboratory science, and modeling. These summaries are released every Tuesday and Friday.

CMS Releases Billing Information for Regeneron Monoclonal Antibody (12/14/20) ▸
CMS has released a set of toolkits for providers, states and insurers to help the health care system prepare and assist in swiftly administering these products once they become available.

COVID-19 FAQs on Medicare Fee-for-Service Billing (12/09/20) ▸
CMS updated FAQs that supplement the following previously released FAQs: 1135 Waiver FAQs and Without 1135 Waiver FAQs.

COVID-19 Coding (12/04/20) ▸
The CMS Fact Sheet and FAQ provides detailed information about Medicare Fee-for-Service billing, cost-sharing waivers, and more for various healthcare settings, including physician offices, RHCs, FQHCs, hospital in- and outpatient settings, and telehealth.

CDC Announces New ICD-10 Codes for COVID-19-Related Conditions (12/03/20) ▸
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published an addenda with instructions for implementing six new ICD-10 diagnosis codes for reporting COVID-19-related conditions on health care claims effective Jan. 1.

Options to Reduce Quarantine for Contacts of Persons with SARS-CoV-2 Infection Using Symptom Monitoring and Diagnostic Testing (12/02/20) ▸
Reducing the length of quarantine will reduce the burden and may increase community compliance. This document lays out evidence to support two options to  shorten the quarantine period.

Late Sequelae of COVID-19 (11/13/20)▸
In peer-reviewed literature and public discussion, persistent symptoms are being reported among COVID-19 survivors, including individuals who initially experience a mild acute illness. These persistent symptoms pose new challenges to patients, healthcare providers, and public health practitioners.

Characteristics of Hospitalized COVID-19 Patients Discharged and Experiencing Same-Hospital Readmission — United States, March–August 2020 (11/13/20)▸
Understanding frequency of, and potential reasons for, readmission after a COVID-19 hospitalization can inform clinical practice, discharge disposition decisions, and public health priorities, such as health care resource planning.

Long-Term Effects of COVID-19 (11/13/20) ▸
CDC is actively working to learn more about the whole range of short- and long-term health effects associated with COVID-19. As the pandemic unfolds, we are learning that many organs besides the lungs are affected by COVID-19 and there are many ways the infection can affect someone’s health.

Evidence used to Update the List of Underlying Medical Conditions that Increase a Person’s Risk of Severe Illness From COVID-19 (11/02/20) ▸
Qualifiers to previously listed conditions were added or removed if there was strong evidence to support that the condition be expanded. Conditions previously listed were to be removed if there was strong and consistent evidence demonstrating no association with severe outcomes. Based on this criterion, no conditions were removed from the previous underlying medical conditions list dated March 2020; however, in this most recent update in November 2020, pregnancy was moved from “mixed evidence” to “strong evidence.”

Enforcement Policy for Non-Invasive Remote Monitoring Devices Used to Support Patient Monitoring During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency (Revised) (10/29/20) ▸
The Food and Drug Administration Wednesday updated its guidance on enforcement policy for non-invasive remote monitoring devices that support patient monitoring during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Temporary Policy on 2020 Premium Credits Associated with the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (08/04/20) ▸
CMS is exercising discretion to adopt a temporary policy of relaxed enforcement in connection with the several standards under the conditions outlined in this bulletin.

Member Toolkit Available from the MHA (07/13/20) ▸
The MHA has released a toolkit for Michigan hospitals as they prepare for and respond to community questions related to COVID-19.

Evidence-Based Treatment Options

Interim Guidance for Rapid Antigen Testing for SARS-CoV-2 (12/05/20) ▸
Antigen tests are relatively inexpensive and can be used at the point-of-care. The currently authorized devices return results in approximately 15 minutes. Antigen tests for SARS-CoV-2 are generally less sensitive than viral tests that detect nucleic acid using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

Ventilators and Ventilator Accessories EUAs (12/03/20) ▸
This EUA authorizes the emergency use of certain ventilators, anesthesia gas machines modified for use as ventilators, positive pressure breathing devices modified for use as ventilators, ventilator tubing connectors, and ventilator accessories that the FDA determines meet specified criteria for safety, performance, and labeling. The devices that are eligible for inclusion under the EUA are those that are not currently marketed in the U.S., or those that are currently marketed in the U.S. but a modification is made to the device that would trigger the requirement that a manufacturer submit a new premarket notification (510(k)) to the FDA, as discussed in the agency’s Ventilator Enforcement Policy.

Assessment of Evidence for COVID-19 Related Treatments (12/02/20) ▸
Evidence table to help practitioners better understand current approaches related to treatment and care.

Panel develops NIH treatment guidelines for COVID-19 (11/13/20) ▸
A panel of U.S. physicians, statisticians, and other experts have developed a “living document” treatment guidelines for COVID-19.

Update Alert 4: Risks and Impact of Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors or Angiotensin-Receptor Blockers on SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Adults (11/03/20) ▸
Findings from 19 observational studies are overall consistent with prior evidence that found a lack of association between angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) and angiotensin-receptor blocker (ARB) use and more severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Should Remdesivir Be Used for the Treatment of Patients With COVID-19? Rapid, Living Practice Points From the American College of Physicians (Version 1) (10/05/20) ▸
These clinical guidelines discuss an ongoing review of the effectiveness of Remdesivir treatment on COVID-19 patients with mild and severe symptoms.

Remdesivir for Adults With COVID-19 A Living Systematic Review for an American College of Physicians Practice Points (10/05/20) ▸
The American College of Physicians review the effectiveness and harms of remdisivir treatment for COVID-19.

Corticosteroids for COVID-19 (09/02/20) ▸
This guideline reflects an innovation from the WHO, driven by an urgent need for global collaboration to provide trustworthy and living COVID-19 guidance informing policy and practice worldwide during an outbreak of an emerging infectious disease, such as this pandemic. For this purpose, WHO has partnered with the non-profit Magic Evidence Ecosystem Foundation (MAGIC) for methodologic support, to develop and disseminate living guidance for COVID-19 drug treatments.

COVID-19 Update: FDA Broadens Emergency Use Authorization for Veklury (remdesivir) to Include All Hospitalized Patients for Treatment of COVID-19 (08/28/20) ▸
On August 28, as part of its ongoing efforts to fight COVID-19, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration broadened the scope of the existing emergency use authorization (EUA) for the drug Veklury (remdesivir) to include treatment of all hospitalized adult and pediatric patients with suspected or laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, irrespective of their severity of disease.

Considerations for Selecting Respirators for Your Health Care Facility (08/18/20) ▸
The FDA has released two flowcharts and information on respirators.

FDA Authorizes Propofol Emulsion for Emergency Use for COVID-19 Ventilator Sedation (document updated 7/28/20) ▸
The Food and Drug Administration May 8 authorized  the emergency use of Fresenius Propoven 2% Emulsion, which the agency says “may be effective to maintain sedation via continuous infusion in patients greater than 16 years old with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 who require mechanical ventilation in an ICU setting.”

Low-Cost Dexamethasone Reduces Death by up to One Third in Hospitalised Patients with Severe Respiratory Complications of COVID-19 (06/16/20) ▸
In March 2020, the RECOVERY (Randomised Evaluation of COVid-19 thERapY) trial was established as a randomised clinical trial to test a range of potential treatments for COVID-19, including low-dose dexamethasone (a steroid treatment). Over 11,500 patients have been enrolled from over 175 NHS hospitals in the UK.

Innovation Transforms Bi-level Positive Airway Pressure Machines into Ventilators (03/31/20) ▸
New York’s Northwell Health develops protocol to turn bi-level positive airway pressure (BiPAP) machine into a functional invasive mechanical ventilator.

Ventilator Sharing Protocol (03/26/20) ▸
Dual-patient ventilation with a single mechanical ventilator for use during critical ventilator shortages.

Modeling

University of Pennsylvania Model (12/15/20) ▸
A statistical model for predicting individual hospital impacts related to COVID-19 under varying assumptions.

CDC – COVID-19 Forecasts: New Hospitalizations (12/09/20) ▸
CDC works with partners to bring together weekly forecasts for new COVID-19 hospitalizations. These forecasts make different assumptions about social distancing measures and use different methods and data sets to estimate the number of new hospitalizations.

Rapid Hospital Readiness Checklist: Tool (11/26/20) ▸
The Rapid hospital readiness checklist for COVID-19 assesses hospital governance, structures, plans and protocols to help countries rapidly determine current capacities and gaps of hospitals to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and to identify major areas that require investment and action and to develop hospital readiness improvement plans. The tool can be used periodically to monitor hospital emergency operational readiness capacity development.

A Compendium of Models that Predict the Spread of COVID-19 (10/19/20) ▸
A growing number of models have been developed by health care systems, academic institutions, consulting firms and others to help forecast COVID-19 cases and deaths, medical supply needs, including ventilators, hospital beds and intensive care unit (ICU) beds, timing of patient surges and more.

COVID-19 Pandemic Planning Scenarios (09/10/20) ▸
CDC and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) have developed five COVID-19 Pandemic Planning Scenarios that are designed to help inform decisions by public health officials who use mathematical modeling and by mathematical modelers throughout the federal government.  Models developed using the data provided in the planning scenario tables can help evaluate the potential effects of different community mitigation strategies (e.g., social distancing).  The planning scenarios may also be useful to hospital administrators in assessing resource needs and can be used in conjunction with the  COVID-19Surge Tool.

Characteristics and Outcomes of Contacts of COVID-19 Patients Monitored Using an Automated Symptom Monitoring Tool (08/07/20) ▸
Prompt case investigation can rapidly identify contacts and recommend quarantine, reducing additional exposures and transmission. Automated tools, available in multiple languages and formats, might improve contact tracing programs and reduce resource needs, including staffing.

Study estimates impact of various social distancing scenarios (updated 07/17/20) ▸
Social distancing interventions started earlier in the COVID-19 epidemic appear to delay the epidemic curve while interventions started later appear to flatten it, according to a new study published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal.

COVIDTracer 1.0 (06/16/20) ▸
COVIDTracer is a spreadsheet-based tool that allows state- and local-level public health officials and policy makers to compare three different contact tracing/monitoring strategies. The tool allows you to vary estimates of the potential effectiveness of each strategy, the average number of contacts per case, and the time needed for case interviews and contact follow-up activities.

COVID-19 Surge (05/25/20) ▸
COVID-19 Surge is a spreadsheet-based tool that hospital administrators and public health officials can use to estimate the surge in demand for hospital-based services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

RAND Critical Care Surge Response Tool (05/05/20) ▸
An Excel-based model for helping hospitals respond to the COVID-19 crisis.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Burn Rate Calculator (04/07/20) ▸
This spreadsheet-based model provides information for healthcare facilities to plan and optimize the use of PPE for response to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

New Study Presents Strategies for Managing Critical Care Surge in US Hospitals (05/04/20) ▸
Researchers present a list of strategies for creating critical care surge capacity based on a review of literature on experiences during past outbreaks and the current COVID-19 pandemic, a survey of frontline clinicians conducted in collaboration with the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), and two telephone roundtables with leading emergency and critical care physicians and public health and preparedness experts from around the country.

Allocation of Scarce Mechanical Ventilation During Disasters (03/21/20) ▸
A framework to guide allocation of scarce mechanical ventilation during disaster.

Waivers

Payment Rule Waivers and Additional Flexibilities (12/10/20) ▸
CMS is relaxing or foregoing several reporting requirements such as discharge planning or transfer policies. The agency will also take steps to allow healthcare organizations to expand their workforce and patient capacity. The agency issued “blanket waivers” of sanctions under the physician self-referral law for COVID-19 purposes. The waivers are effective March 1, 2020 and may be used without notifying CMS.

COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) Billing (12/09/20) ▸
The FAQs in this document supplement the previously released FAQs: 1135 Waiver FAQs.

COVID-19 Emergency Declaration Waivers & Flexibilities for Healthcare Providers (12/01/20) ▸
Summary of waivers and flexibilities for providers.

COVID-19 Release and Liability Waivers: Real Risk Mitigation or a False Sense of Security?(07/29/20) ▸
Given the high number of risks associated with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, service providers are using COVID-19-related liability waivers and attestation statements, asking an individual to attest to the fact that they are not experiencing COVID-19-like signs or symptoms and have not recently tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) before the provider renders services to the individual.

Vaccines

Different COVID-19 Vaccines (01/15/21) ▸
As COVID-19 vaccines are authorized and then recommended for use in the United States, it will be important to understand what is known about each vaccine. CDC will provide information on who is and is not recommended to receive each vaccine and what to expect after vaccination, as well as ingredients, safety, and effectiveness.

FDA Statement on Following the Authorized Dosing Schedules for COVID-19 Vaccines (01/04/21) ▸
As the first round of vaccine recipients become eligible to receive their second dose, we want to remind the public about the importance of receiving COVID-19 vaccines according to how they’ve been authorized by the FDA in order to safely receive the level of protection observed in the large randomized trials supporting their effectiveness.

COVID-19 Vaccines and Severe Allergic Reactions (12/31/20) ▸
CDC has learned of reports that some people have experienced severe allergic reactions—also known as anaphylaxis—after getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

AHA Releases Additional COVID-19 Vaccine Resources for Hospitals and Health Systems (12/29/20) ▸
To help advance the public’s confidence and trust in the safety of COVID-19 vaccines and their distribution, the AHA continues to develop and collate resources that hospitals and health systems can use as COVID-19 vaccines become available in their communities.

The Importance of COVID-19 Vaccination for Healthcare Personnel (12/28/20) ▸
Based on recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), an independent panel of medical and public health experts, CDC recommends healthcare personnel be among those offered the first doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

COVID-19 Vaccine Communications Toolkit (12/22/20) ▸
The COVID-19 Vaccine Communications Toolkit was developed as a guide through the steps involved in planning, designing and executing a vaccine communications plan and campaign.

Understanding mRNA COVID-19 Vaccines (12/18/20) ▸
Within the next month, messenger RNA vaccines—also called mRNA vaccines—are likely to be some of the first COVID-19 vaccines authorized for use in the United States.

Factors Associated with Positive SARS-CoV-2 Test Results in Outpatient Health Facilities and Emergency Departments Among Children and Adolescents Aged <18 Years — Mississippi, September–November 2020 (12/18/20) ▸
In this investigation, children and adolescents who received positive test results for SARS-CoV-2 were more likely than were similarly aged participants who had negative test results to have had reported close contact with a person with confirmed COVID-19 and less likely to have had reported consistent mask use by students and staff members inside the school facility. Among participants with close contact with a person with COVID-19, close contacts of case-patients were more likely to be family members and less likely to be school or child care classmates than were those of control participants. 

AAFP | COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ  (12/12/20) ▸
Thinking ahead to what your patients may ask for, the AAFP’s COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs provides information to help you answer their questions, from how mRNA vaccines work to side effects to availability.

Fact Sheet for Healthcare Providers Administering Vaccine (Vaccination Providers) (12/11/20)▸
The FDA developed a detailed factsheet with information for providers administering vaccinations.

Ensuring the Safety of COVID-19 Vaccines in the United States (12/10/20) ▸
The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Safety is a top priority while federal partners work to make a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine(s) available.

Pfizer’s Vaccine Offers Strong Protection After First Dose (12/08/20) ▸
The coronavirus vaccine made by Pfizer and BioNTech provides strong protection against Covid-19 within about 10 days of the first dose, according to documents published on Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration before a meeting of its vaccine advisory group.

10 Things Healthcare Professionals Need to Know about U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Plans (12/04/20) ▸
Although CDC does not have a role in developing COVID-19 vaccines, CDC has been working closely with health departments and partners to develop vaccination plans for when a vaccine is available. With the possibility of one or more COVID-19 vaccines becoming available before the end of the year, CDC provides 10 things healthcare professionals need to know about where those plans currently stand.

ACP Physicians Guide | Resources: Vaccination Planning (12/03/20) ▸
The following information is provided to help clinical teams in their efforts to plan for and provide Covid-19 vaccinations.

How CDC Is Making COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations (12/03/20)▸
CDC is making coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination recommendations for the United States based on input from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). ACIP is a federal advisory committee made of up of medical and public health experts who develop recommendations on the use of vaccines in the U.S. public. ACIP holds regular meetings, which are open to the public and provide opportunity for public comment.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ Ethical Principles for Allocating Initial Supplies of COVID-19 Vaccine — United States, 2020 (11/27/20) ▸
In addition to scientific data and implementation feasibility, four ethical principles will assist ACIP in formulating recommendations for the initial allocation of COVID-19 vaccine: 1) maximizing benefits and minimizing harms; 2) promoting justice; 3) mitigating health inequities; and 4) promoting transparency.

Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines (11/23/20)▸
In the United States, there is not yet an authorized or approved vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). With the possibility of a limited supply of one or more COVID-19 vaccines becoming available before the end of 2020, accurate vaccine information is critical.

COVID-19 Vaccine Codes and PC-ACE Software Update (11/12/20)▸
In anticipation of the availability of a vaccine(s), for the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) in response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the American Medical Association (AMA), working with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), created new codes for the vaccine and the administration of the vaccine. To prepare for the vaccine administration claims, the PC-ACE software is also updated and ready for providers to download.

An mRNA Vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 — Preliminary Report (11/12/20) ▸
We conducted a first-in-human phase 1 clinical trial in healthy adults to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of mRNA-1273. Here we report interim results of the trial.

Vaccination: 10 Things Healthcare Professionals Need To Know about U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Plans (11/09/20) ▸
Although CDC does not have a role in developing COVID-19 vaccines, CDC has been working closely with health departments and partners to develop vaccination plans for when a vaccine is available.

Healthcare Worker Well-Being

CDC Updates Guidance on SARS-CoV-2 Testing for Health Workers (12/14/20) ▸
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provided updated recommendations for testing health care personnel (HCP) for SARS-CoV-2.

Update Alert 5: Epidemiology of and Risk Factors for Coronavirus Infection in Health Care Workers (12/01/20) ▸
This is the fifth monthly update alert for a living rapid review on the epidemiology of and risk factors for coronavirus infection in health care workers.

Interim Operational Considerations for Public Health Management of Healthcare Workers Exposed to or with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19: non-U.S. Healthcare Settings (11/19/20)▸
Early reports indicate that person-to-person transmission most often occurs during close contact with an individual infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Healthcare workers (HCWs) are not only at higher risk of infection but can also amplify outbreaks within healthcare facilities if they become ill.

Strategies to Prevent Health Professional Burnout (11/10/20) ▸
David Zaas, M.D., chief clinical officer for MUSC Health in South Carolina and CEO of its Charleston Division, talks with Nancy Foster, AHA vice president for quality and patient safety, about strategies and tools to address burnout as health care professionals continue to care for COVID-19 patients.

AHA partners with CDC to release COVID-19 training for health care workers (10/28/20) ▸
In partnership with the AHA’s Center for Health Innovation and other national health care organizations, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today launched Project Firstline, a national training collaborative to help every health care worker understand and adhere to recommended infection control practices to respond to COVID-19 and protect their health.

ACP: Update Alert 4: Epidemiology of and Risk Factors for Coronavirus Infection in Health Care Workers (10/20/20) ▸
This is the fourth monthly update alert for a living rapid review on the epidemiology of and risk factors for coronavirus infection in health care workers (HCWs). Searches were updated from 25 July to 24 August 2020 using the same search strategies as the original review.

When the Dust Settles: Preventing a Mental Health Crisis in COVID-19 Clinicians (10/06/20) ▸
The ACP shares a foundational set of principles to use as guidance for building internal support for the trauma caused by the pandemic: looking past the illness, fostering community, promoting vulnerability, and establishing boundaries and limitations.

Guidance for Health Workers (08/06/20) ▸
Publications, tools, templates and resources for health workers from the WHO.

Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: Implications for Infection Prevention Precautions (07/09/20) ▸
This scientific brief provides an overview of the modes of transmission of SARS-CoV-2, what is known about when infected people transmit the virus, and the implications for infection prevention and control precautions within and outside health facilities.

Children and COVID-19

Children and COVID-19: State-Level Data Report (12/14/20) ▸
State-level reports are the best publicly available data on child COVID-19 cases in the United States. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association are collaborating to collect and share all publicly available data from states on child COVID-19 cases (definition of “child” case is based on varying age ranges reported across states; see report Appendix for details and links to all data sources).

Information for Pediatric Healthcare Providers for Managing Pediatric Patients with Confirmed or Suspected COVID-19 (12/03/20) ▸
Refer to this information when managing pediatric patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. For healthcare providers caring for neonates (≤28 days old), please refer to CDC guidance for evaluating and managing neonates at risk for COVID-19.

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) Interim Guidance (11/17/20) ▸
The AAP has released new interim guidance on an inflammatory condition in children linked to COVID-19.

New COVID Data Show Record Weekly Increase in Cases in Children (11/02/20) ▸
Cases of COVID-19 in U.S. children have shown a record increase in the most recent reporting period, according to the latest weekly report from the AAP and the Children’s Hospital Association (CHA).

New Guidance Can Help Pediatricians Support Families’ Emotional Health During Pandemic (10/26/20) ▸
The AAP is providing new interim guidance on how to evaluate and support children, adolescents and families who are struggling with emotional and behavioral health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

AAP Updates Interim Guidance on SARS-CoV-2 Testing, PPE (10/01/20) ▸
The AAP is providing more detailed guidance on when and how to test children for SARS-CoV-2 infection, as well as the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) and how to interpret results.

COVID-19 Testing Guidance for Pediatric Practices (09/30/20) ▸
Testing for SARS-CoV-2 in practice can inform individual patient care, and testing at a population level helps determine what interventions may need to be put in place to control the spread of disease within a community.

Keep Children Healthy During the COVID-19 Outbreak (09/17/20) ▸
Based on available evidence, children do not appear to be at higher risk for COVID-19 than adults. While some children and infants have been sick with COVID-19, adults make up most of the known cases to date.

AAP Report: 513,415 Children Diagnosed with COVID-19 (09/09/20) ▸
More than half a million U.S. children have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and at least 103 have died, new data show. Pediatric cases increased 16% from Aug. 20 to Sept. 3, bringing the total to 513,415, according to the latest weekly report (updated September 8) from the AAP and Children’s Hospital Association.

Information for Healthcare Providers about Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) (08/28/20) ▸
Healthcare providers who have cared or are caring for patients younger than 21 years of age meeting multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) criteria should report suspected cases to their local, state, or territorial health department.

AAP Interim Guidance Addresses Outpatient Care of Sick Children During Pandemic (08/28/20) ▸
The AAP is emphasizing the importance of the medical home as well as community partnerships as pediatricians care for acutely ill children during the COVID-19 pandemic.

AAP | Preparing for Flu Season (08/19/20) ▸
The American Academy of Pediatrics has developed a site containing advice, FAQ, webinars and other resources to help practices in preparing for flu season in tandem with COVID-19.

COVID-19–Associated Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children — United States, March–July 2020 (08/14/20) ▸
Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a rare but severe condition that has been reported approximately 2–4 weeks after the onset of COVID-19 in children and adolescents. Distinguishing MIS-C from other severe infectious or inflammatory conditions poses a challenge to clinicians caring for children and adolescents. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to expand in many jurisdictions, health care provider awareness of MIS-C will facilitate early recognition, early diagnosis, and prompt treatment.

AAP Urges Universal Cloth Face Coverings for those Ages 2 and Up, with ‘Rare Exception’ (08/13/20) ▸
Children ages 2 years and older can and should wear cloth face coverings when not able to physically distance, including while in schools, child care and other group settings, according to AAP interim guidance.

Study: 33% of children hospitalized with COVID-19 admitted to ICU (08/07/20) ▸
One-third of children hospitalized with COVID-19 were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), a rate similar to adults, according to a new study.

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in U.S. Children and Adolescents (07/23/20) ▸
Understanding the epidemiology and clinical course of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) and its temporal association with coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) is important, given the clinical and public health implications of the syndrome.

Infographic: Tracking MIS-C: Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome in U.S. Children (07/16/20) ▸
By leveraging a national influenza surveillance network of pediatric ICUs72, CDC and partners conducted targeted surveillance for MIS-C from March 15 through May 20, 2020, identifying 186 MIS-C cases in 26 states.

PPE

PPE Available Via HealthEquip App (01/14/21) ▸
AHA, through the 100 Million Mask Challenge, continues to work with novel manufacturers and suppliers to support hospitals’ and health systems’ PPE needs.

Summary for Healthcare Facilities: Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of N95 Respirators during Shortages (12/29/20) ▸
This summary is intended to help healthcare facilities optimize supplies of disposable N95 filtering facepiece respirators when there is limited supply during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of Disposable Medical Gloves (12/23/20) ▸
This document offers a series of strategies or options to optimize supplies of disposable medical gloves in healthcare settings when there is limited supply.

Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of Eye Protection (12/22/20) ▸
This document offers a series of strategies or options to optimize supplies of eye protection in healthcare settings when there is limited supply.

Counterfeit Respirators / Misrepresentation of NIOSH-Approval (12/04/20) ▸
Counterfeit respirators are products that are falsely marketed and sold as being NIOSH-approved and may not be capable of providing appropriate respiratory protection to workers. NIOSH has provided a webpage to help users identify a NIOSH-approved respirator.

ECRI Exclusive Hazard Report Cardinal Health—Sterile Pairs Exam Gloves: May Be Contaminated with Unknown Substance (11/24/20) ▸
Cardinal Health Sterile Pairs exam gloves may be contaminated with brown spots or black marks. The composition of the contamination is unknown. If used, the gloves may contaminate the procedure or compounding.

Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of Facemasks (11/23/20)▸
This document offers a series of strategies or options to optimize supplies of facemasks in healthcare settings when there is limited supply.

Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of N95 Respirators (11/23/20) ▸
This document offers a series of strategies or options to optimize supplies of disposable N95 filtering facepiece respirators (commonly called “N95 respirators”) in healthcare settings when there is limited supply. It does not address other aspects of pandemic planning; for those, healthcare  facilities can refer to COVID-19 preparedness plans.

Strategies for Optimizing the Supply of Facemasks (11/23/20) ▸
These considerations are intended for use by federal, state, and local public health officials; leaders in occupational health services and infection prevention and control programs; and other leaders in healthcare settings who are responsible for developing and implementing policies and procedures for preventing pathogen transmission in healthcare settings.

ECRI | UPDATED | N95-Style Mask Testing Summary (10/27/20) ▸
NIOSH data includes model/product line, international standard, filtration efficiency percentage, N95 particle filtration efficiency (PFE) requirement assessment, and test report. ECRI data also includes product image.

Use of N95, Surgical, and Cloth Masks to Prevent COVID-19 in Health Care and Community Settings: Living Practice Points From the American College of Physicians (Version 1) (10/20/20) ▸
Evaluation of different PPE to reduce transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection in healthcare and community settings.

ECRI | Updated | Coronavirus Support Product Equivalents (10/15/20) ▸
Best matches for the three most popular air clearance units, breathing circuits, disinfecting wipes, HME filters, IV solutions, and universal transfer media. Proprietary database includes manufacturer name, catalog number, percentage match, median price, and KPI details.

N95 Decontamination Research (09/28/20) ▸
Fact sheets on decontamination using heat and humidity, UV-C, hydrogen peroxide vapor, and hydrogen peroxide gas plasma.

PPE and COVID-19 Supplies through Amazon Business (09/22/20) ▸
The AAP partnered with Amazon to offer a special business account to AAP members. This account offers access to Amazon’s wide product selection, competitive prices, and free shipping on orders over $25.

N95 and Other Respirators (09/16/20) ▸
Summary of respirators and how to best optimize supply of N95 respirators.

Filtration Efficiency Performance of Non-NIOSH-Approved International Respiratory Protective Devices: Phase One (08/27/20) ▸
This report summarizes the filtration performance results from the assessments that took place as a result of the initial Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) issued by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and discusses important considerations when purchasing non-NIOSH approved international respiratory devices temporarily authorized for occupational use in the United States.

COVID-19 Essential Supplies Forecasting Tool (08/26/20) ▸
The focus of this tool is to forecast essential supplies: it includes estimation of personal protective equipment, diagnostic equipment, biomedical equipment for case management, essential drugs for supportive care, and consumable medical supplies.

Strategies to Optimize the Supply of PPE and Equipment (07/16/20) ▸
CDC’s optimization strategies for PPE offer options for use when PPE supplies are stressed, running low, or absent.

UVGI, VHP Appear Promising for N95 Decontamination (07/08/20) ▸
Demand for N95 filtering facemask respirators during the COVID-19 pandemic far exceeds the supply, leading to discussions about how to best decontaminate them for reuse.

Donning and Doffing N95 (06/30/20) ▸
The intent of this video is to show team members how to Don/Doff appropriately when caring for patients when and severe respiratory precautions such as those who have tested positive for or are suspected to have COVID-19. This video will show you how to Don or Doff your PPE if you are entering a patient’s room with a surgical mask or N95 mask.

Donning and Doffing PAPR (06/30/20) ▸
The intent of this video is to show team members how to Don/Doff appropriately when caring for patients when and severe respiratory precautions such as those who have tested positive for or are suspected to have COVID-19. This video will show you how to Don or Doff your PPE if you are entering a patient’s room with a PAPR.

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in COVID-19

Disproportionate Incidence of COVID-19 Infection, Hospitalizations, and Deaths Among Persons Identifying as Hispanic or Latino — Denver, Colorado March–October 2020 (12/04/20) ▸
To evaluate COVID-19 health disparities in the community and inform public health, health system, and community-based interventions, local public health authorities analyzed the sociodemographic characteristics of persons who were diagnosed, hospitalized, and who died with COVID-19 in Denver, Colorado.

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in COVID-19–Related Infections, Hospitalizations, and Deaths (12/01/20) ▸
African American/Black and Hispanic populations experience disproportionately higher rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19–related mortality but similar rates of case fatality. Differences in health care access and exposure risk may be driving higher infection and mortality rates.

Excess Deaths Associated with COVID-19, by Age and Race and Ethnicity (10/23/20) ▸
This report describes estimated excess deaths reported in the United States from late January through October 3, 2020, with 66% excess deaths attributed to COVID-19.

Race, Ethnicity, and Age Trends in Persons Who Died from COVID-19 — United States, May–August 2020 (10/23/20) ▸
These results can inform public health messaging and mitigation efforts focused on prevention and early detection of infection among disproportionately affected groups so as to minimize subsequent mortality.

NIH Funds Program to Improve COVID-19 Testing in Underserved, Vulnerable Populations (09/30/20) ▸
The National Institutes of Health has awarded nearly $234 million to improve COVID-19 testing for underserved and vulnerable populations, such as African Americans, American Indians/Alaskan Natives, Latinos/Latinas, Native Hawaiians, older adults, pregnant women and those who are homeless or incarcerated.

COVID-19 Among American Indian and Alaska Native Persons — 23 States, January 31–July 3, 2020 (08/28/20) ▸
American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) persons appear to be disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic; however, limited data are available to quantify the disparity in COVID-19 incidence, severity, and outcomes among AI/AN persons compared with those among other racial/ethnic groups.

Disparities in Incidence of COVID-19 Among Underrepresented Racial/Ethnic Groups in Counties Identified as Hotspots During June 5–18, 2020 — 22 States, February–June 2020 (08/21/20) ▸
Among 79 counties identified as hotspots during June 5–18, 2020 that also had sufficient data on race, a disproportionate number of COVID-19 cases among underrepresented racial/ethnic groups occurred in almost all areas during February–June 2020. Identifying health disparities in COVID-19 hotspot counties can inform testing and prevention efforts. Addressing the pandemic’s disproportionate incidence among communities of color can improve community-wide health outcomes related to COVID-19.

AHA podcast — Tackling Health Equity: How Boards Can Do It  (07/31/20) ▸
In this two-part Trustee Insights podcast, senior health leaders discuss challenges board members can expect to encounter as they strive for health equity and how best to meet them. Maria Hernandez, president and chief operating officer of Impact4Health, and Karma Bass, senior principal at Via Healthcare Consulting, explore specific steps boards can take to address diversity and racism. 

Health Equity Considerations & Racial & Ethnic Minority Groups (07/24/20) ▸
Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put many people from racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting sick and dying from COVID-19. The CDC provides data resources on COVID-19 and race and ethnicity.

Addressing Health Care Disparities through Race, Ethnicity and Language (ReAL) Data (07/01/20) ▸
The AHA’s Institute for Diversity and Health Equity, highlights new race, ethnicity and language (REaL) data resources and tools to help health care providers meet the needs of minority and vulnerable populations in the fight against COVID-19 and beyond.

Five Actions to Promote Health Equity During the COVID-19 Pandemic (04/27/20) ▸
Hospitals and health systems are working to address the health equity challenges highlighted by this crisis in different ways. This document highlights five areas where you are making a difference in your community.

Medical Provider Letter Disparities from the Department of Health and Human Services ( 04/20/20) ▸
A message from Dr. Joneigh S. Chaldum, Chief Medical Executive for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

For Physicians

The Remote Misses of COVID-19 (12/15/20) ▸
America’s response to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is evolving as quickly as the pandemic itself, with attitudes and actions diverging along the way. Exploring historical examples of population-wide responses to other large-scale, traumatic events may offer useful insights.

Clinical Questions about COVID-19: Questions and Answers (12/14/20) ▸
Clinical Q&A related to risk, transmission, testing, treatment, management, etc. of COVID-19.

American Academy of Family Physicians COVID-19 Page (12/12/20) ▸
Links to a member community of more than 600 physicians, AAFP advocacy and physician office preparedness checklist.

COVID-19 Webinar Series Available for All Hospitals (12/10/20) ▸
A weekly Mi-COVID19 webinar series began Dec. 9 that aims to continue collaboration and share COVID-19-related lessons learned with stakeholders and experts across multiple disciplines to support Michigan hospitals and providers in caring for COVID-19 patients. CME/CE credit is being offered for each webinar.

COVID Patient Testing (12/10/20) ▸
CMS has released a series of checklists and fliers to assist with counseling of patients pre- and post- COVID test.
Provider Counseling Q&A

Provider Patient Counseling Checklist
Provider Talking Points
Key Steps When Waiting for COVID-19 Results
Contact Tracking Infographic

Interim Clinical Guidance for Management of Patients with Confirmed Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) (12/08/20) ▸
This interim guidance is for clinicians caring for patients with confirmed infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). CDC will update this interim guidance as more information becomes available.

Coronavirus Resources for Health Professions from Michigan.gov (12/08/20) ▸
Links to guidance for self-monitoring and work restriction, COVID-19 PUI case report form and guidance for substance use disorder during COVID-19.

Information for Pediatric Healthcare Providers (12/03/20) ▸
This guidance is intended to inform pediatric healthcare providers of up-to-date information about children with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and about caring for children during the pandemic. Children are defined as age 1 month to 18 years for the purpose of this document.

COVID-19 Testing – Guide for Physicians (11/25/20) ▸
Information on coronavirus testing options and availability is changing rapidly. Tests and specimen collection components remain in short supply and are being directed to areas of greatest need.

CMS: Clinicians Can Apply for COVID-19 MIPS Exception (11/14/20) ▸
Clinicians participating in the Quality Payment Program Merit-based Incentive Payment System in 2020 whose practice was significantly impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency may apply for an exception to reweight the MIPS performance categories.

Training for Healthcare Professionals (09/11/20) ▸
List of training materials available for healthcare professionals relating to COVID-19.

Communication Materials for COVID-19 (08/13/20) ▸
CDC offers free resources including video, handouts, flyers, fact sheets, and posters.

COVID-19 Release and Liability Waivers: Real Risk Mitigation or a False Sense of Security? (07/30/20) ▸
Given the high number of risks associated with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, service providers are using COVID-19-related liability waivers and attestation statements, asking an individual to attest to the fact that they are not experiencing COVID-19-like signs or symptoms and have not recently tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) before the provider renders services to the individual.

COVID-19 Practice Management Issues (07/24/20) ▸
Managing supplies, testing, personnel, medico-legal concerns, and looking toward re-opening.

AAFP: COVID-19 Diagnosis Coding Explained in a Flowchart (07/05/20) ▸
This source gives an in-depth explanation of ICD-10 code options for COVID-19 diagnoses along with a flow chart developed to help physicians navigate how to properly assign diagnosis codes related to COVID-19 encounters.

CDC Issues Guidance on Immunizations During Pandemic: FP Experts Provide Insights, Vaccination Tips (06/30/20) ▸
To help ensure that patients continue to receive needed vaccines while safeguarding clinicians and staff, the CDC has issued new interim guidance(www.cdc.gov) for immunization services during the pandemic.

Cure ID app (06/08/20) ▸
The FDA has released a repository to allow clinicians to share experiences treating COVID-19.

Michigan Medical Group Management Association (05/28/20) ▸
Links to COVID-19 webinars, billing/coding resources, and information about advocacy.

Clinical management of COVID-19 (05/27/20) ▸
This guidance document is intended for clinicians caring for COVID-19 patients during all phases of their disease (i.e. screening to discharge).

For Hospitals

Saint Peter’s University Hospital Addresses Long-term Effects of COVID-19 (12/15/20) ▸
Saint Peter’s COVID-19 Recovery Program serves as a community-based support system and resource by providing expert medical care to COVID-19 patients as they deal with persistent symptoms. The program offers care to patients who were treated for COVID-19 at Saint Peter’s or another hospital, and to individuals who tested positive and recovered at home. The goal is to leverage Saint Peter’s clinical expertise and partnership with community physicians and specialists to manage these patients’ unique needs.

Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Information Gateway:(asprtracie.hhs.gov) (12/15/20) ▸
This resource from HHS, which includes COVID-19 information, offers technical assistance on health emergency preparedness to health care organizations and physicians.

COVID-19 Billing Recommendations and Guidance Reference (12/14/20) ▸
The MHA has developed a reference tool for COVID-19 billing recommendations and guidance from published materials from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and the Michigan Association of Health Plans.

Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations for Healthcare Personnel During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic (12/14/20) ▸
This interim guidance has been updated based on currently available information about COVID-19 and the current situation in the United States. As healthcare facilities begin to relax restrictions on healthcare services provided to patients (e.g., restarting elective procedures), in accordance with guidance from local and state officials, there are precautions that should remain in place as a part of the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

HHS updates COVID-19 guidance and FAQs on hospitals’ daily data reporting (12/08/20) ▸
The Department of Health and Human Services Friday updated its guidance and FAQs  regarding the agency’s request for daily COVID-19-related hospital data reporting.

COVID-19 Critical Infrastructure Sector Response Planning (12/03/20) ▸
Public health recommendations have been updated to accommodate new scientific evidence, evolving epidemiology, and the need to simplify the assessment of risk.

CDC | People with Certain Medical Conditions (12/01/20) ▸
Revisions were made to reflect recent data supporting increased risk of severe illness during pregnancy from the virus that causes COVID-19. Revisions also include addition of sickle cell disease and chronic kidney disease to the conditions that might increase the risk of severe illness among children. These revisions also make the document more explicit about data and implications for adults and for children.

General Contact Tracing and Case Investigation Training Modules (11/30/20) ▸
The trainings listed below are for public health professionals or the general public who are interested in becoming a contact tracer, case investigator or public health professional who already serve in these roles and are seeking to improve their knowledge.

Sixty-Day Outcomes Among Patients Hospitalized With COVID-19 (11/11/20) ▸
Cohort study developed to describe 60-day postdischarge clinical, financial, and mental health outcomes of patients with COVID-19.

COVID-19 Recovery: Team-Based Care Toolkit (10/29/20) ▸
This toolkit includes team-based resources that can help physicians, their teams, and their patients optimize team-based care in a pandemic/post-pandemic setting. The unprecedented global health crisis of the 2019 coronavirus outbreak has presented a unique opportunity for mass mobilization towards team-based care and collaboration in the health care space.

Team-Based Care Can Add Value, Improve Outcomes in Pandemic Response (10/27/20) ▸
With the flu season upon us and indications surfacing of a COVID-19 resurgence in many regions of the country, hospitals and health systems will need a well-coordinated clinical response to manage the impact on front-line caregivers. Many are turning to team-based models of care that encompass patients’ medical and social needs across the care continuum.

Duration of Isolation and Precautions for Adults with COVID-19 (10/19/20) ▸
At this time, we have limited information about reinfections with the virus that causes COVID-19. This is a new virus, and CDC is actively working to learn more. We will provide updates as they become available. Data to date show that a person who has had and recovered from COVID-19 may have low levels of virus in their bodies for up to 3 months after diagnosis.

Case Series of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Adults Associated with SARS-CoV-2 Infection — United Kingdom and United States, March–August 2020 (10/09/20) ▸
Cases reported to CDC and published case reports and series identify MIS-A in adults, who usually require intensive care and can have fatal outcomes. Antibody testing was required to identify SARS-CoV-2 infection in approximately one third of 27 cases.

HHS releases Rural Action Plan (09/18/20) ▸
The HHS has released a rural action plan, including challenges faced and a four-point strategy to transform rural health.

Considerations for quarantine of contacts of COVID-19 cases (08/21/20) ▸
This document is an update of interim guidance entitled Considerations for quarantine of individuals in the context of containment for coronavirus disease (COVID-19), published on 19 March 2020. This version is restricted to the use of quarantine for contacts of confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19. It provides updated guidance for the implementation of quarantine, as well as additional guidance on ventilation and on the care of children in quarantine.

Key Considerations for Transferring Patients to Relief Healthcare Facilities when Responding to Community Transmission of COVID-19 in the United States (07/30/20) ▸
This guidance outlines considerations around the transfer of patients, staff, and supplies between healthcare facilities to optimize patient care, balance resources, and minimize use of crisis care standards.

COVID-19 Hospital Resource Compilation (7/29/20) ▸
This document lists key COVID-19 guidance and resources for hospital administrators, hospital emergency planners, infection control practitioners and other healthcare system preparedness professionals in the following topical areas: hospital surge, crisis standards of care, staffing surge and resilience, workforce protection, regulatory relief, equipment supply surge, healthcare recovery and resumption of services during COVID-19, and telemedicine. Each section contains links to federal and non-federal guidance to help hospitals prepare for and respond to a COVID-19 outbreak.

Infection Prevention and Control During Health Care When Coronavirus Disease (‎COVID-19)‎ is Suspected or Confirmed (06/29/20) ▸
This document provides interim guidance on infection prevention and control (IPC) strategies during health care when coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is suspected or confirmed.

ACS Funding Summary: Establishment and Operationalization (06/22/20) ▸
Funding options for establishing Alternative Care Sites (ACS), including operation, ongoing administration, and direct patient costs.

New Tool Connects Hospitals With Compounders Who Can Provide Drugs in Shortage (04/29/20) ▸
The Alliance for Pharmacy Compounding has launched a free tool for connecting hospitals with 503B outsourcing facilities, or alternatively, 503A sterile compounding pharmacies, that can supply shortage drugs to treat COVID-19.

Coronavirus Support Product Equivalents (04/24/20) ▸
Best matches for the three most popular air clearance units, breathing circuits, disinfecting wipes, HME filters, IV solutions and universal transfer media.

Comprehensive Hospital Preparedness Checklist for COVID-19 from the CDC (03/25/20) ▸
The CDC, with input from partners, has developed a checklist to help hospitals (acute care facilities) assess and improve their preparedness for responding to a community-wide outbreak of COVID-19.

Post-Acute Care

Infection Prevention and Control Assessment Tool for Nursing Homes Preparing for COVID-19 (12/14/20) ▸
Infection Control Assessment and Response (ICAR) tools are used to systematically assess a healthcare facility’s infection prevention and control (IPC) practices and guide quality improvement activities (e.g., by addressing identified gaps).

Infection Prevention and Control Assessment Tool for Nursing Homes Preparing for COVID-19 (12/14/20) ▸
Infection Control Assessment and Response (ICAR) tools are used to systematically assess a healthcare facility’s infection prevention and control (IPC) practices and guide quality improvement activities (e.g., by addressing identified gaps).

Considerations for Use of SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Testing in Nursing Homes (12/10/20) ▸
This document provides a summary of considerations for use of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) antigen testing in nursing homes and is intended for nursing home providers and state and local public health departments.

Toolkit on State Actions to Mitigate COVID-19 Prevalence in Nursing Homes (12/02/20) ▸
This toolkit catalogs the many innovative solutions designed at the state level to protect our nation’s
vulnerable nursing home residents during the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Preparing for COVID-19 in Nursing Homes (11/20/20) ▸
As demonstrated by the COVID-19 pandemic, a strong infection prevention and control (IPC) program is critical to protect both residents and healthcare personnel (HCP).

Characterization of COVID-19 in Assisted Living Facilities — 39 States, October 2020 (11/20/20) ▸
With ongoing community transmission, ALFs should take actions to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2 in their facilities, including rapid identification and response to residents and staff members with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

Trump Administration Distributes Incentive Payments to Nursing Homes Curbing COVID-19 Deaths and Infections (10/28/20)▸
Under the leadership of President Trump, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is announcing it will distribute approximately $333 million in first round performance payments to over 10,000 nursing homes. These nursing homes are being recognized for demonstrating significant reductions in COVID-19 related infections and deaths between August and September.

CMS Updates COVID-19 Testing Methodology for Nursing Homes (09/29/20) ▸
CMS announced an update to the methodology the agency employs to determine the rate of coronavirus disease 2019.

Medicare Payment for COVID-19 testing: SNF (09/18/20) ▸
CMS released a workflow for understanding COVID-19 related testing.

$2Billion Provider Relief fund for SNF (09/03/20) ▸
The HHS released qualification details pertaining to the $2 Billion PRF fund for SNF and Nursing homes.

FAQ for COVID-19 Tests at SNFs (07/31/20) ▸
CMS released a FAQ for SNF COVID-19 tests.

Changes to Staffing Information and Quality Measures Posted on the Nursing Home Compare Website and Five Star Quality Rating System due to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (06/25/20) ▸
CMS is ending the waiver of the requirement for nursing homes to submit staffing data through the Payroll-Based Journal System.

CMS Announces New Actions Regarding Nursing Home Infection Control (06/01/20) ▸
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday implemented several new infection control actions to combat COVID-19 in nursing homes. One action addresses the inconsistent rate of nursing home inspections mandated by CMS on March 4, which currently range from 11% to 100% across the states.

COVID-19: Senior Care Compendium (05/28/20) ▸
The following resources provide essential information for hospital and health system executive
leaders as they continue to provide care to older adults during the COVID-19 crisis.

Upcoming Requirements for Notification of Confirmed COVID-19 (or COVID19 Persons under Investigation) Among Residents and Staff in Nursing Homes (04/21/20) ▸
CMS is committed to taking critical steps to ensure America’s health care facilities are prepared to respond to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency (PHE). 

Michigan Executive Order on Long Term/Skilled Nursing Facilities (04/20/20) ▸
Executive Order 2020-50 limits the acceptance of residence.

Policy for Designated COVID-19 Regional Hubs (04/16/20) ▸
To minimize the impact and spread of COVID-19, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) will work with Medicaid certified nursing facilities to establish COVID-19 Regional Hubs to care for the affected residents.

COVID-19 Long-Term Care Facility Guidance (04/02/20) ▸
CMS and the CDC are issuing new recommendations to State and local governments and long-term care facilities to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Hospital to Post-Acute Care Transfer Form for COVID-19 (03/27/20) ▸
Tool to facilitate communication between providers during the transition from the hospital to the post-acute care setting.

Resuming Care

Strategies to Mitigate Healthcare Personnel Staffing Shortages (12/14/20) ▸
Healthcare facilities must be prepared for potential staffing shortages and have plans and processes in place to mitigate these, including communicating with HCP about actions the facility is taking to address shortages and maintain patient and HCP safety and providing resources to assist HCP with anxiety and stress.

Guidance for Reopening Buildings After Prolonged Shutdown or Reduced Operation (09/22/20) ▸
The temporary shutdown or reduced operation of a building and reductions in normal water use can create hazards for returning occupants.  Check for hazards before reopening after a prolonged period of building inactivity.

AHA: Three Considerations for Restarting Surgical Service During the Pandemic (08/18/20)▸
The authors explain that most elective surgical cases fall somewhere between vital preventive measures (e.g., colonoscopy screenings) and essential surgery (e.g., cataract surgery) and that clinical research across surgical specialties demonstrates worse patient outcomes and higher costs when these treatments are delayed. They offered several strategies that health care leaders can employ to meet their clinical goals while striving for better operational efficiency and equity in access to care.

Criteria for Return to Work for Healthcare Personnel with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19 (Interim Guidance) (08/10/20) ▸
Who this is for: Occupational health programs and public health officials making decisions about return to work for healthcare personnel (HCP) with confirmed COVID-19, or who have suspected COVID-19 (e.g., developed symptoms of a respiratory infection [e.g., cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, fever] but did not get tested for COVID-19).

Investing in and building longer-term health emergency preparedness during the COVID-19 pandemic (07/06/20) ▸
This document is to help Member States build on actions taken during the COVID-19 pandemic to improve national medium- to long-term preparedness for future threats.

Framework for Healthcare Systems Providing Non-COVID-19 Clinical Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic (06/30/20) ▸
As the pandemic continues, healthcare systems must balance the need to provide necessary services while minimizing risk to patients and healthcare personnel (HCP). Because the effects of COVID-19 vary among communities, healthcare systems will also need to consider the local level of COVID-19 transmission when making decisions about the provision of medical services. This document provides a framework for the delivery of non-COVID clinical care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the dynamic nature of the pandemic, considerations may change over time and vary by practice type and setting.

A Checklist for Reopening Your Practice for “Non-Essential” Face-to-Face Visits (05/04/20) ▸
The decision to reopen a practice for in-person visits depends on many factors, including the availability of personal protective equipment, the availability of COVID-19 testing, and the prevalence of COVID-19 cases in your area (covidtracking.com). When your practice decides to reopen, the following checklist can help ease the process and keep everyone safe. This resource was adapted from the AAFP resource Considerations on Re-opening Your Practice. and CDC guidance for ambulatory care settings(www.cdc.gov).

Q&A

The State of Michigan has published guidance for employers who need to reduce their headcount. This resource provides insights into the pros and cons or layoffs, furlough and work share. Click here for more information.

CMS has created a telehealth and telemedicine tool kit with electronic links to reliable sources of information. Click here for more information.

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