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COVID-19 News & Updates
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Last Updated: May 27, 2020 | 3:00pm EST
UPDATE: HHS Extends Deadline for Attestation, Acceptance of Terms and Conditions for Provider Relief Fund Payments to 45 Days
May 27, 2020: The Department of Health and Human Services has extended the deadline for healthcare providers to attest to receipt of payments from the Provider Relief Fund and accept the Terms and Conditions. Providers will now have 45 days, increased from 30 days, from the date they receive a payment to attest and accept the Terms and Conditions or return the funds. Click below to read more.
UPDATE: Providers Must Act by June 3, 2020 to Receive Additional Relief Fund General Distribution Payment
May 21, 2020: The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has released additional information on the Provider Relief Fund deadline for submitting revenue information. They are also reminding eligible providers that they have until June 3, 2020, to accept the Terms and Conditions and submit their revenue information to support receiving an additional payment from the Provider Relief Fund $50 billion General Distribution. Click below to read more.
UPDATE: CMS Releases Updated Fee Schedule for Non-Bid Area Suppliers Based on CARES Act
May 5, 2020: CMS just released new rates for non-rural/non-bid areas based on the COVID-19 stimulus legislation enacted in late March. These rates went into effect for claims with dates of service beginning March 6 and will be in place until the end of the public health emergency. Read more from the HomeCare Magazine article by clicking below.
UPDATE: April 30, 2020: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today issued another round of sweeping regulatory waivers and rule changes to deliver expanded care to the nation’s seniors and provide flexibility to the healthcare system as America reopens. Click below to read more from the HME Business article summary.
UPDATE: Operating Cost & Supply Chain Survey - Suppliers and Manufacturers
April 16, 2020: CMS has requested that AAHomecare gather data on the pandemic’s impact on our HME Industry. Responses are due by close of business on Tuesday, April 21st, 2020. AAHomecare has advised that one person per company should complete the form. Click below to read more from HME Business and for links to the survey.
UPDATE: AAHomecare Develops Rate Increase Analysis for Non-Rural/Non-Bid Suppliers During COVID-19 Emergency
April 13, 2020: AAHomecare shared an analysis of the 75/25 rates for non-rural, non-CBAs and estimated that suppliers would see an overall increase of about 30% in rates for items that are included in the competitive bidding program. To help suppliers who are interested in reviewing the new 75/25 rates at the state-level, AAHomecare developed a tool to help analyze the estimated new rates for 340 product codes.
UPDATE: COVID-19 Toolkit: CGA News & Resources
April 12, 2020: Click the link below to visit the Compressed Gas Association’s COVID-19 toolkit page with up-to-date news and resources for healthcare providers.
UPDATE: Interim Guidance for Implementing Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure to a Person with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19
April 9, 2020: To ensure continuity of operations of essential functions, CDC advises that critical infrastructure workers may be permitted to continue work following potential exposure to COVID-19, provided they remain asymptomatic and additional precautions are implemented to protect them and the community. Click below to visit the CDC’s site and read more.
UPDATE: CMS Removes Non-Invasive Ventilators from Round 2021 of the Competitive Bidding Program
April 9, 2020: Due to the novel COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is removing the non-invasive ventilators (NIV) product category from Round 2021 of the Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program. Click the link below to read more.
UPDATE: UnitedHealthcare Releases Updated Guidance for HME Suppliers
April 8, 2020: UnitedHealtcare (a major third party payer) has release a new guidance to help HME suppliers in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. This applies to Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and Individual and Group Market health plan members, with dates of delivery from March 31, 2020, until May 31, 2020. Click the link below to read more.
UPDATE: Safety Alert, Cylinder and Cryogenic Container Issue Related to Cylinder Conversion and Filling During the COVID-19 Crisis
April 8, 2020: CGA has issued the first edition of SA-36, Safety Alert, Cylinder and Cryogenic Container Issue Related to Cylinder Conversion and Filling During the COVID-19 Crisis. The safety alert was published and is available to download from CGA’s website. Click below to real the full notice.
UPDATE: U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Notice Temporarily Waives Hydrostatic Test Date Requirement for Cylinders
April 6, 2020: On April 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a Notice of Enforcement Discretion Regarding Cylinders That Have Exceeded Their Periodic Requalification Test Date (click below). This notification means that hydrostatic test date requirement for oxygen cylinders has been waived temporarily. Click below to real the full notice.
UPDATE: U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Issues Special Permit SP 21025
April 1, 2020: The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued Special Permit SP 21025 that authorizes the filling and offering for transportation certain DOT specification cylinders that are up to 12 months overdue for periodic requalification for relief efforts during the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. Click here for DOT Special Permit SP 21025 and click here to download an application template.
UPDATE: CMS Releases Interim Final Rule on COVID-19 Regulatory Changes
March 31, 2020: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released an Interim Final Rule (IFR) addressing a range of healthcare issues related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. HomeCare Magazine summarized the initial analysis of the IFR performed by AAHomecare that indicates that priority policy recommendations from the HME industry have been included, except for the delay of competitive bidding.
State Controlled Substance Pharmacy Law Waivers and COVID-19 Response
SAFETY ALERT: CGA announces the release of CGA SA-35 (Cleaning of Cylinders Returned from Healthcare Facilities During a Pandemic)
March 27, 2020: Cleaning of Cylinders Returned from Healthcare Facilities During a Pandemic, which provides additional guidance on the use of cleaning and disinfection solutions for cylinders received from healthcare facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. This Safety Alert is available free of charge.
Transport Canada issues two temporary certificates related to the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations
March 27, 2020: Workers with expired recurrent training will be allowed to continue working with temporary certificate TU 0750. TU 0751 allows cylinders that are acceptable for filling and use but are out of requalification date to be used.
Essential Business: Supporting Documentation for OxyGo Providers
March 19, 2020: DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Cyber and Infrastructure (CISA) has issued a list of essential businesses on 3/19/20 confirming our designation: “Manufacturers, technicians, logistics and warehouse operators, and distributors of medical equipment, personal protective equipment (PPE), medical gases, pharmaceuticals (including materials used in radioactive drugs), blood and blood products, vaccines, testing materials, laboratory supplies, cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting or sterilization supplies, and tissue and paper towel products.”
Now Available at No Charge: CGA Publication P-83 Provides Guidelines for Cleaning Contaminated Medical Gas Containers
March 4, 2020: CGA P-83 provides guidance on the considerations required to avoid compromising the medical gas container during cleaning and disinfection procedures. Click below to access the CGA website and the free download.
Official government website with information about the outbreak.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The latest information on COVID-19 including safety tips and home care advice.
The source for your Medicare questions about COVID-19.
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