Today's COVID-19 Report: Thursday, April 23, 2020
Thursday, April 23, 2020
Here are the latest need-to-know updates for Thursday, April 23 regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
ODH Re-posts List of Facilities with COVID-positive Residents
Yesterday, the Ohio Department of Health re-posted a list of Ohio long-term care facilities that either had “residents or staff who test positive for COVID-19 or have a probable diagnosis of COVID-19.” The list was posted and then removed last week, in response to an outcry from Ohio providers that noted the counts reflected were inaccurate. In response, the Administration reported that it verified the information, and made the following changes:
- The type of facility is noted, rather than just the facility name;
- Counts are now divided into staff and residents, rather than combining all-cases;
- Moving forward, the list will be updated weekly, and will include detail on new cases since the past week’s posting, as well as cumulative cases to-date.
The Administration also shared that it would provide death counts associated with long-term care facilities, but only on an aggregated basis, by county. The Administration reiterated that the list will remain a static document, in that no provider names will be removed once they have a single positive case, and neither will it note which facilities are actively receiving COVID-positive cases from local hospitals, nor which facilities will serve as health care isolation centers (HCICs), which would dramatically increase their numbers.
LeadingAge Ohio continues to advocate for reforms to the reporting mechanism so that it more accurately reflects the complexity of caring for this patient population.
HHS Shares Plans for Provider Relief Fund
The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) put out an announcement through its communication channels describing how it intends to allocate the rest of the $100B Provider Relief Fund.
HHS has stated that $50B is for general distribution based on prior Medicare revenue. The first $30B, based on FFS billing in 2019, came out between April 10 and April 14. Providers with a relatively small proportion of funds coming from Medicare, such as children’s hospitals, will get the remaining $20B (of the $50B). Additionally $10B will be targeted to hospitals in high outbreak areas, $10B to rural health clinics and hospitals, $400M for Indian Health Service providers, an unspecified amount for skilled nursing facilities, dentists and providers that exclusively serve Medicaid beneficiaries, and an unspecified amount to reimburse providers at Medicare rates for treating uninsured COVID patients.
LeadingAge provided an article that explains the announcement in a bit more detail. Many details are still unspecified.
Reminder: ODH/ODM Daily Survey
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and the Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) continue to collect and aggregate daily data from long-term care (LTC) providers, non-long term (NLTC) providers and hospitals. The survey data collected from providers is helpful in making accurate projections to inform state-wide planning.
As reported yesterday, ODM sent over a list of reminders for providers when completing this survey:
- This survey should be completed daily at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/88R2KSD.
- Wednesday, April 22 through Friday, April 24, the PPE and Staff sections are mandatory. ODM requests that providers review and verify their facility’s PPE stockpile before beginning the survey.
- Information gathered over this three-day period is intended to provide accurate data regarding statewide PPE needs to help inform state procurement efforts. Therefore, completion of the survey on each of these three days will be extremely valuable.
- After Friday, April 24, the staff and PPE sections will again be made optional. ODM strongly encourages providers to complete them every day, even when they are optional.
- ODM reminds providers to include their NPI within the survey, not their tax identification number. If you do not have an NPI, it is important to:
- Enter as complete of a name of the organization as possible, and
- Enter the exact same name every day for consistency and proper tracking.
ODM stated that providers will notice changes within the survey as of yesterday. Updates to both the questions and the terminology used among the questions have been made to ensure accurate data reporting and to align with the most recent responses and feedback received.
EIDC Document: Notification of First Responders
The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) shared ODH Director Amy Acton’s signed an order on Monday, April 14 to release protected health information on individuals who test positive for COVID-19, when necessary, to Ohio’s first responders.
Facemasks Available Through Hubert Healthcare
Hubert Healthcare is a contracted supplier with Vizient/Value First and currently has facemasks in stock. For additional details on this opportunity, review their announcement here.
If interested, members will want to reference the Vizient/Value First contract FD3025 when setting up an account. Please note that the price of these masks are above normal market pricing.
Tuition.io Shares Webinar on Student Loan Impact of CARES Act
Tuition.io has shared a recorded webinar from LeadingAge Ohio on the CARES Act and what it means for employees with student loans.
This webinar helps borrowers understand the temporary student loan relief provisions in the CARES Act and how to apply them to their lives.
Borrowers can expect to learn about:
- Loan eligibility for these benefits;
- The interest waiver;
- Administrative forbearance;
- How to stay on track for loan forgiveness;
- What to expect for loans in default; and
- Decision-making surrounding refinancing.
Tuition.io CARES Act Employee Webinar registration is available online now. Cheryl Westover [email@example.com] is available on Thursdays to answer any questions about the CARES Act.
Ohio Statistics: 14,117 Cases, 610 Deaths
As of yesterday, there are 14,117 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Ohio and 610 confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths. A total of 2,882 people have been hospitalized, including 880 admissions to intensive care units.
In-depth data can be accessed by visiting coronavirus.ohio.gov.
Please send all questions to COVID19@leadingageohio.org. Additionally, members are encouraged to visit the LeadingAge Ohio COVID-19 Working Group facebook group to pose questions to peers and share best practices.