Image of White Coats in a Huddle: Text Your Practice

 

 

Practice operations depend on a risk assessment of community spread of cases and your state’s current rate of vaccination. It is important to realize that this is a fluid and changing environment, that risk may change with time and decisions may need to change.

 

 

Managing Your Practice

Does mandatory vaccination of all staff apply to your practice? In short, we don’t know yet. The Biden Administration announced that it "will require COVID-19 vaccination of staff within all Medicare and Medicaid-certified facilities.” Whether the typical allergy office is a “facility” as defined by CMS is not clear, and will be further defined in the development of the regulatory process. If you practice in a Federally Qualified Health Center or Rural Health Clinic or provide services under an arrangement with such a facility, then it will likely apply.

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI): Considerations for Safe Clinical Practice During the Pandemicwritten by the COVID-19 Response Task Force (12/20/20) 

COVID-19 relief provisions and appropriations for FY 2021 of interest to allergy practices are summarized here.

Frequent updates of regulatory issues related to the COVID 19 pandemic from the AAAAI's professional advocacy partner can be found at https://www.aaaai.org/about-aaaai/advocacy/covid


Telemedicine

Many practices are continuing to utilize telemedicine to see patients. A summary of current regulations and coding and billing guidance can be found here.

Helpful Resources for Telemedicine

AAAAI Telemedicine Toolkit 

CMS Telehealth Toolkit for General Practitioners  

Updated CMS Medicare fee-for-service FAQs. Telehealth guidance begins on page 35 and includes additional guidance related to telephone-only codes (Q24), billing of disconnected telehealth visits (Q25) and consent requirements for certain telehealth and other virtual visits (Q32). 

The Joint Taskforce on Technology and Telemedicine developed several short videos on practicing telemedicine during the pandemic: 


COVID-19 Coding

The AMA, in cooperation with CMS, has released new codes for specific vaccine products. A spreadsheet of all the COVID-19 testing, vaccine and vaccine administration codes can be downloaded here

CMS has a list of specific COVID 19 vaccine codes and payment allowances and a comprehensive toolkit for providers with the information needed to administer and bill for the vaccines. 


Academic Practice Management Resources

Running a Virtual Allergy Division and Training Program in the Time of COVID-19 Pandemic 

Virtual Practice Management Workshop Webinar Recording: Academic Practice Management in the COVID-19 Pandemic 


External Resources

AMA: A physician's guide to COVID-19

American College of Physicians (ACP): COVID-19 Practice Management Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): COVID-19 information for healthcare workers

Elsevier Novel Coronavirus Information Center

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Guidance on Conduct of Clinical Trials of Medical Products During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency 

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Strategic Plan for COVID-19 Research: 2021 update

US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) COVID-19 Vaccine Handling Toolkit