COVID-19 Update
October 2, 2020

OPWDD Clarification to Remote Nursing ADM
The language in the background section of the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) "Performing Nursing Services and Duties Remotely" ADM raised questions about the ability for RNs to conduct nursing triage activities outside of certified settings. We reached out to OPWDD's Statewide Director of Nursing and Health Services to obtain clarification.
The ADM and its provisions do not apply to on-call or triage services. RNs may continue to perform triage and on-call services from locations other than a certified setting.
OPWDD to Resume Routine Survey Activities
Today, OPWDD announced that the Division of Quality Improvement (DQI) Bureau of Program Certification (BPC) would resume routine survey activities for non-ICF programs. This will include Site and Agency Reviews. Person-Centered Reviews were already underway. Information on OPWDD's survey activities can be found here

Chapters should continue to implement health screening protocols for any visitors to a program, including OPWDD surveyors. Staff will need a reminder about the screening protocols, as well as policies and procedures involving OPWDD surveys. We previously developed a "Survey Ready Staff" tips document that may be of use as Chapters prepare for surveys.

Please do not hesitate to reach out should you experience any challenges with the OPWDD survey activities.

Influenza in the Time of COVID-19
On September 30, the Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS) presented their Recovery and Preparedness Webinar Series, "Influenza in the Time of COVID-19." A recording of the webinar can be found here

This webinar will be of particular interest to Chapter nursing and clinical staff as we enter the flu season. Amy Sherman, MD, Division of Infectious Diseases from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, presented strategies to address and limit the impact of influenza and COVID-19. The presentation also touched upon the similarities and differences between the two viruses.

The presentation draws on data from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. The Institute offers many valuable tools, including charts that project the trends in COVID-19 cases and fatalities. The data can be viewed hereWe encourage everyone to take time out to view this timely webinar and explore the available data.
$20 Billion in New Phase 3 Provider Relief Funding
Yesterday, The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced that $20 billion in additional funding will be made available to healthcare providers via a third phase of the General Distribution. Providers who received payments during the first or second tranche are eligible to apply for additional funds as listed in the methodology below. 

Applications will be accepted between October 5 and November 6, 2020Applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible since funds are limited. 
  1. Providers who already received or rejected previous payments from the General Distribution, Phase 1 and/or 2, may submit additional information and may be eligible for further payments.
  2. Behavioral Health providers are also invited to apply (both new providers and those who have received a prior payment).
  3. Healthcare providers that began practicing between January 1 and March 31, 2020 including Medicare, Medicaid/CHIP, dentists, assisted living facilities, and behavioral health providers.
  1. Providers who have not yet received 2% of patient revenue will receive a payment such that all payments received total 2% of patient revenue.
  2. An additional add-on payment will be calculated that accounts for:
    • a provider's change in operating revenue from patient care,
    • a provider's change in operating expenses from patient care, and
    • payments already received through the Provider Relief Fund.
All Chapters should submit their applications beginning Monday to ensure they receive the maximum available under this appropriation. 

This and all related updates will be cataloged on The Arc New York COVID-19 Resource Page for future reference. Please contact us if you have questions regarding any of this information.

Josh Christiana, Associate Executive Director for Quality, Compliance & Chapter Relations

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