COVID-19 Administrative and Financial Relief for Members

AAFP

Yesterday you received a letter from AAFP about relief, both administrative and financial for you as a member. There have been several developments aimed at providing much needed relief, both administrative and financial, to you as a member:

  • The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed and signed into law. This bill aims to provide financial relief to small businesses, support health care workers, get medical supplies to the front lines, fund research for vaccines and stimulate the U.S. economy.
  • CMS announced the expansion of the accelerated and advanced payment program to fast track cash flow to Medicare providers who have been financially impacted by COVID-19.  This particular announcement was very congruent with the direct request to HHS Secretary Azar in the AAFP letter to him last week.
  • The AAFP’s board of directors approved the following provisions around CME reporting/requirements and dues:
    • Any members whose CME re-election cycle ends on Dec. 31, 2020 and who have not yet met the CME requirement will have an additional year to do so.
    • Members whose three-year cycle ended on Dec. 31, 2019 will now have until Dec. 31, 2020 to report their CME to remain eligible for membership (original deadline was May 5, 2020).
    • Any members who have not yet paid their 2020 dues will now have until July 14, 2020 to submit payment

Protecting Yourself from Exposure to COVID-19 in the Workplace

National Institute of Health

The National Clearinghouse for Worker Safety & Health Training creates training tools to aid in the development of awareness-level courses or other awareness-level materials. These tools provide health and safety guidance to workers who work in industries with the potential for exposure to COVID-19. You may find these resources helpful:

Family Physicians in the Spotlight

KAFP

During the COVID-19 pandemic, family physicians are being sought for guidance and answers from the media. Please notify us of any media engagements you have had so that we can best support you in helping spread the word. You may email us info@kafonline.org or send us a message via our KAFP Facebook. Your Academy is here to serve you.

Urge Lawmakers to support family physicians during COVID-19

AAFP

Family physicians continue to play an essential role in our nation’s public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As the virus spreads, the pressures on family physicians will only increase. Many practices are facing severe shortages of equipment and supplies, and most are starting to feel the financial strains of the pandemic. It is critical that congressional leaders take action to support America’s frontline physicians by ensuring they have the equipment, supplies and financial resources needed to keep them operating.

Please join us in urging lawmakers to do their part to provide family physicians the support we need to be successful in responding to COVID-19. The AAFP SPEAK OUT tool is a valuable tool for all family physicians to use. The pre-written message may be edited as you see fit.

Most recently the AAFP joined the AMA, ACP, ACS and MGMA in sending a letter to House and Senate leadership calling for increase support to physicians. The legislative requests included in the letter are:

Require all payers, including ERISA plans, to provide coverage and payment for audio-only telehealth visits with patients, at the same level as in-person visits.

  1. Provide dedicated and direct financial support to physicians and their practices on the front lines of testing, diagnosing, and treating patients at risk of COVID-19, recognizing the increased costs they are incurring in the care of such patients.
  2. Provide dedicated financial support to all physicians and their practices who are experiencing adverse economic impact on their practices from suspending elective visits and procedures.
  3. We also strongly urge that Congress take all possible actions to ensure that every physician, and every health care worker, has access to critically needed PPE.
,

Executive Order Issued to Expand Telemedicine; Tips on Telehealth

KAFP/AAFP

Under the new executive orders issued by Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, the Kansas Board of Healing Arts is blocked from enforcing any law, rule or regulation that requires in-person examinations in order to issue a prescription or administer medication.

Out-of-state doctors may provide telemedicine services in Kansas if they are licensed in another state. All physicians are encouraged to utilize telemedicine, including those under self-quarantine.

This expansion of telemedicine is to deliver relief for COVID-19. As of March 22, 66 Kansas residents have tested positive for COVID-19, and two have died. See detailed map.

 The AAFP recently updated its guidance on using telehealth to specifically address caring for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tips included in that guidance address how to quickly implement telemedicine in a practice, how to get reimbursed for virtual visits and what codes to use for COVID-19. Additionally, there is specific guidance on Medicare payment requirements for these telehealth sessions.

Read more on how family physicians are using telehealth as a tool to care for patients.

Join Virtual Town Hall

AAFP

Recently, the AAFP President Gary LeRoy, MD, FAAFP and AAFP SVP Julie Wood, MD, MPH, FAAFP hosted the AAFP Virtual Town Hall to discuss the latest updates on the COVID-19 outbreak. You can view the video here. The next AAFP Virtual Town Hall is set for Monday, March 30 at 7 p.m. live on the AAFP Facebook page. Mark your calendars.

,

Information You Can Use

AAFP/KAFP

KAFP has created a dedicated COVID-19 page for you to find all resources in one location. Bookmark https://kafponline.org/COVID-19

In addition, don’t forget AAFP has a daily update for you to bookmark and check each day to eliminate sifting through the flood of news.

And lastly be sure and tune in each Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. for AAFP’s weekly COVID-19 Virtual Town Hall. Members are invited to participate via:
AAFP Facebook
AAFP Twitter or
AAFP’s YouTube channel: The weekly events will be archived on the Academy’s YouTube channel, and will also be available for viewing on the AAFP’s website later.

Coverage and Payment for Telemedicine and Virtual Care

AAFP

Please read this public statement by AAFP: Coverage and Payment for Telemedicine and Virtual Care that addresses the need for new policies that will enhance coverage and payment for telemedicine and virtual care. The statement calls on all health plans – public, private, ERISA and Medicaid – to expand their policies in four key areas. We encourage you to email to your United States Senators and share with your local insurance company contacts.

COVID-19 Resources

KAFP

We are living in incredible times and you, our members, are the frontline to combating the COVID-19 outbreak and working to flatten the curve of the virus’s impact on our communities.

KAFP is committed to supporting you while you advance the health of Kansans. That’s why we’re dedicating this week’s newsletter to help you easily access patient information, resources from KDHE, the CDC and AAFP.

We know our community health centers and hospitals will be taxed throughout this pandemic. The best thing we can do however, is to listen to trusted, scientific resources providing us with guidance and guidelines.

Thank you for your continued commitment to your communities and patients.

Resources to inform and educate patients:

Resources for physicians:

Telemedicine Resources:

Coverage and Reimbursement

Legal

Practice Guidelines

Technical Support/Misc.

COVID-19-related websites:

KAFP-Foundation Wine Tasting and Auction tickets for sale

KAFP-Foundation

The KAFP-Foundation Wine Tasting and Auction is back at KAFP’s annual conference Fam Med Forward 2020 – June 4-6 In Manhattan, Kan. This popular event is a great opportunity to fellowship with your peers, sample new wines, and even bid on fabulous wines donated by members. Proceeds benefit the KAFP-Foundation. Tickets are $75 per person and are tax deductible.

You may buy tickets with your Fam Med Forward registration or purchase tickets separately online.  Contact Michelle Corkins to donate items, or you may wish to make a gift to the KAFP-Foundation.

KAFP-Foundation Wine Tasting & Auction
June 4, 2020
Union Pacific Train Depot, Manhattan, KS