COVID 19: New and Updated Information and Resources
NJAASC has curated authoritative information and a list of resources for our Membership’s reference. We will continue to update this as more information becomes available.


ACF RELIEF – 3/31/20
I have gotten calls and e-mails from centers about the ACF.
Last Friday in the COVID e-blast I posted from our lobbyist and from Larry Downs from MSNJ.
Today I was told that no ASCs have responded! He needs this to help make the case, please assist.
You need to get this done if you want tax relief.

IS YOUR BUSINESS PROTECTED? – 3/31/20
Join the Brach Eichler Webinar

UPDATED ICAR INFORMATION – 3/31/20
SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) is currently circulating in New Jersey and the surrounding areas with many healthcare workers and facilities being heavily impacted. Please see below and attached for a quick overview of updated resources and guidance for healthcare personnel.
 
As always please continue to review federal, state, and local partner resources. Some resources of interest may include:
 
 
Jessica Arias, Bridget Farrell, Carol Genese, and Melody Lee
Infection Control Assessment Response (ICAR) Team

FAMILIES FIRST ACT- Q&A- 3/31/20

FAMILIES FIRST ACT- Q&A- 3/31/20
Tonight CMS released information concerning  regulatory changes  to allow the U.S. healthcare system to address the expected patient surge from the COVID-19 outbreak. Under the “hospitals without walls” program, hospitals will be able to transfer patients to outside facilities, including ASCs, while still receiving hospital payments under Medicare. ASCs will be able to contract with local healthcare systems to provide hospital services, or they can enroll and bill as hospitals during the emergency declaration as long as they are not inconsistent with their State’s Emergency Preparedness or Pandemic Plan.
 
We will be holding a special update call for State Leaders tomorrow at  11 a.m. ET  to provide updates on these regulatory changes and what they mean for ASCs. Dial-in information for the call is listed below and a calendar invitation will circulated shortly. 

SURGE CAPACITY/ SPILL OVER—CONCERNS AND ISSUES – 3/31/20

Here are some talking points and a breakdown based on some primary concerns:
 
Managing narcotics: The ASC would operate like a "unit" in the hospital. So if the hospital issues narcotics out of their primary stock they will need to track them on a narcotic sheet and record each medication used on each patient. They can also track waste on this sheet. I would keep medications secure in a box with a lock. On a hospital floor they would be in a narc box or an automated dispensing machine until the meds are used. So an anesthesia type box could be used. I would have the narcotic sheet counted with two RNs at the end of each shift. And then return them to the "primary storage location" if the ASC doesn't remain open for 24 hours. 
I would recommend that we participate in the management of drug security in coordination with the hospital. Another option is to use a pharmacy such as Devines pharmacy and fill medication orders as an outpatient prescription. 
 
Managing Medications: I would assume medications would need a pharmacist review if the ASC is functioning like a hospital. We are offering  24/7  oncall coverage for medication verification. 
They would need the orders faxed over, RPH reviews, and sends back a fax stating the orders are reviewed. Obviously we would need pertinent information: Allergies, Scr, Ht, Wt, etc. 
We currently have this service in place at 4 PA surgical hospitals. It would be seamless to provide this service. 
 
Formulary Management: I would assume the ASC would just adopt the formulary of the hospital they are working with. Or fill medications thru an outpatient pharmacy. JDJ could provide coordination. Bigger question is how the ASCs will get the medications they need to their facilities? If they are doing "emergency fracture surgeries" it would be prudent to review the order set at the hospital and ensure those medications are onsite at the ASC.
 
Drug Information: Many ASC staff are not trained at a critical care level. So perhaps our greatest use would be drug information. The questions we answer daily oncall. How long to run this antibiotic? i.e. Vancomycin over 90-120mins, Cefazolin over 30 mins, etc etc. Also how fast to push a medication. More so the medications that the staff may not be familiar with. Drug interactions should also be reviewed using Lexicomp or some other software.
 
If they run these ASCs like Urgent care facilities I do not believe our services will be as demanding other than drug information. If they classify them like hospitals then what I suggested above may apply.
Be safe
John k

Questions? Contact Jeff Shanton at  jshanton@jssurgctr.com