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Local Coronavirus Update and Resources

Maryland Health Care Commission

The Maryland Health Care Commission (MHCC) developed a health care provider guidance document, Broadening Access to Telehealth During a Public Health Emergency. This document highlights temporary measures taken by Medicare, Maryland Medicaid, and commercial payers to expand telehealth coverage and reimbursement in response to COVID-19.  The guidance document can be found on MHCC’s telehealth web page here and is also attached.  

We encourage you to share this information across your network. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Melanie Cavaliere at melanie.cavaliere@maryland.gov or Justine Springer at justine.springer@maryland.gov.

 

CMS Comprehensive Toolkits on Telehealth

On Friday, March 20, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released two comprehensive toolkits on telehealth--one specific to general practitioners, and one for providers treating patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Each toolkit contains links to help providers learn about the general concept of telehealth, choose telemedicine vendors, initiate a telemedicine program, monitor patients remotely, and develop documentation tools. Toolkits also provide information on temporary virtual services that could be used to treat patients during this specific period of time.

Access the  Telehealth Toolkit for General Practitioners.

Access the end-stage renal disease providers toolkit.

Maryland State Medical Society Update

There continues to be swiftly-evolving news surrounding the coronavirus public health emergency.  Here's what the Maryland State Medical Society want you to know:

The Maryland Department of Health Order issued on March 23 stops all elective medical visits and procedures.  When asked for clarification on the order, Howard Haft, MD, from the Maryland Department of Health, explained “The guidance is unchanged.  Elective visits and procedures should cease.  It is up to clinical decision by the patient's informed provider to decide what is elective and what is not.”  He went on to explain that “clearly, annual wellness visits and physicals can be deferred.  Sick visits should be done, to the extent possible by telemedicine, if not then face to face or home visiting.  The goal is to keep people away from each other unless it is essential for them to do otherwise.”

For medical practices that are forced to close due to the Governor's orders, business and financial relief resources can be found here.

New telemedicine FAQs have been released by HHS.  Governor Hogan has activated the Maryland Responds Medical Reserve Corps for trained medical volunteers.

For healthcare institutions that are facing provider shortages, Favorite Healthcare Staffing is one of the largest natural disaster response agencies in the country by providing relief for hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, border immigration crisis, and now COVID-19 outbreaks. Favorite can supply a large amount (100+) of RN, LPN, NP/PA and Direct Care Staff within 24-48 hours. 

Visit the MedChi COVID-19 Resource Page regularly for up to date information and resources.

Please reach out to them if you have questions or if there are specific resources you are looking for.  Thank you for all that you do as physicians and healers.