VMS May Webinar: Optimal Care for Elders in the TIme of COVID 19
Join us Thursday, May 21, 2020 from 12-1PM for a free CME-accredited webinar, "Optimal Care in the Time of COVID-19" with Zail Berry, M.D., MPH, FACP, for insight on how medical professionals should consider caring for their older patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Berry practices at the UVMMC Adult Primary Care clinic in Williston and is one of Vermont’s foremost experts in the practice of palliative medicine and end-of-life care. Please register for this webinar here. You will receive one credit of CME. To see the full schedule of VMS Thursday Webinars, click here. Please preregister
Telehealth Top Priority for VT Health Care Committees
At a hearing today, lawmakers released two legislative proposals aimed at solving some of the barriers health care professionals and their patients face in using and accessing telehealth services in Vermont. A draft proposal from the Senate and House Health Care Committees asks the Department of Financial Regulation (DFR) to convene a working group made up of stakeholders – including VMS - to determine what telephone only services will be covered after the emergency ends. The Committees also proposed draft legislation that charges the Vermont Program for Quality in Health Care (VPQHC) in collaboration with their Statewide Telehealth Workgroup and the Department of Public Safety to conduct a patient connectivity needs assessment that would analyze Vermont patient’s access to broadband, video capacity and their digital literacy. VMS and other stakeholders are encouraging the legislature to focus on continuing the provisions of H.742/Act 91 that address telehealth coverage and licensing flexibility until June 30, 2021. VMS continues to ask members to complete the VMS Telehealth Survey by May 15th to help us assess what resources practices and patients might need to more successfully implement telehealth services.
AMA Reports HHS Extends Provider Relief Reporting Deadline
According to the AMA, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has extended the deadline for healthcare providers to attest to receipt of payments from the Provider Relief Fund and to accept the Terms and Conditions. Recipients will now have 45 days from the date they receive a payment from any of the allocations to attest and accept HHS terms or to return the funds. With the extension, not returning the payment within 45 days of receipt of payment will be viewed as acceptance of the Terms and Conditions. The allocations include:
- HHS is distributing $50 billion across the healthcare system to providers and facilities that bill Medicare.
- HHS is using a portion of the Provider Relief Fund to reimburse healthcare providers, at Medicare rates, for COVID-related treatment of the uninsured.
Recently Updated COVID-19 Helpful Links:
- DVHA’s Phase 2 Medicaid Retainer Program FAQ guidance, May 5, 2020 – The Department of Vermont Health Access has created a temporary payment model for Medicaid providers intended to combine fee-for-service reimbursement with prospective monthly payments for May and June.