Coronavirus Update #206
Update on Vaccine, Reminder on Hospital Partner List, Upcoming Calls and Webinars
HFAM Update: Vaccine - Walgreens and CVS


I think most estimates are that CVS and Walgreens will hold initial vaccine clinics in skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers between December 21 and January 4 and some vaccine clinics are starting as early as next week. As you know, the two first vaccines deployed will require two doses a couple of weeks apart. It is critical that you prepare now to get ready.

CVS and Walgreens are each holding online information sessions this week, and AHCA/NCAL will have an online seminar on the CVS and Walgreens programs this Thursday, December 10 at 4:00 PM EST. CLICK HERE to register.

AHCA/NCAL's webinar will walk you through how to get ready and promote high vaccination rates in your building. The webinar is open to everyone. Registration is required, but lines are limited. This webinar will be recorded and made available if you are not able to join live. 
CVS/Walgreens initially will be required to have three clinics in our setting to vaccinate residents, patients, and staff.  While the federal government is not requiring written consent for the vaccine, CVS and Walgreens are requiring written consent— another reason that the AHCA/NCAL call this week is so important to attend. In the meantime, please see this FAQ from AHCA/NCAL for more information.

Finally, three important reminders:

  • Skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers signed up for the CVS/Walgreens vaccination program as directed by the federal government. If there was a problem with the sign-up, the Maryland Department of Health auto enrolled skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers into the national CVS/Walgreen national vaccination plan.

  • CVS and Walgreens are calling and emailing skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers to arrange the initial clinics.

  • Skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers are making operational plans for the initial clinics. Please remember, you must have written consent (we are going to have to get that from guardians for folks unable to consent).

  • We understand the truly and historically challenging days and weeks we are entering.
  • You are saving lives.
  • People first, quality counts.
  • Our sector MUST double our efforts on infectious disease protocol, staffing, PPE, observation, and testing.
  • Stay close to your hospital partners.
  • Sound alarms early.
  • Know that WE WILL get through this.
  • Train, train, and train teams again on infectious disease protocol.
  • Recognize that COVID-19 fighting fatigue is an issue across the county, not just in our sector.
  • Overcommunicate with residents, patients, families, staff, and government partners.
  • Work with your hospital partners, and coordinate with local and state regulatory partners.
  • Take and document your action; keep a timeline
  • CLICK HERE for the Dr. Katz Video, and please see the Donning and Doffing Checklist we first distributed a couple of months ago.

Onward together, marathon and not a sprint.

Be well,
Joe DeMattos
President and CEO
Reminder on Hospital Partner List

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, HFAM and our sector has worked closely with the individual hospitals and our trusted and supportive colleagues at the Maryland Hospital Association (MHA). CLICK HERE for a list compiled by the MHA matching every skilled nursing and rehabilitation center in Maryland with a hospital resource partner.

Nursing homes are paired with a hospital in their region. Many nursing homes have a relationship in place with a hospital through the medical director, ownership, or a collaborative such as ECHO or LTC Partnership. If a relationship does not exist, the nursing home is paired with its “911 hospital.” The email and phone number for the hospital’s post-acute liaison is under the contact tab. When contacted, hospitals will supply as much assistance as they are able.
CMS COVID-19 Stakeholder Engagement Calls

CMS hosts varied recurring stakeholder engagement sessions to share information related to the agency’s response to COVID-19. These sessions are open to members of the healthcare community and are intended to provide updates, share best practices among peers, and offer attendees an opportunity to ask questions of CMS and other subject matter experts. 

Call details are below. Conference lines are limited so you are encouraged to join via audio webcast, either on your computer or smartphone web browser. You are welcome to share this invitation with your colleagues and professional networks. These calls are not intended for the press.

CMS COVID-19 Office Hours Calls (twice a month on Tuesday at 5:00 – 6:00 PM Eastern)

Office Hour Calls provide an opportunity for hospitals, health systems, and providers to ask questions of agency officials regarding CMS’s temporary actions that empower local hospitals and healthcare systems to Increase Hospital Capacity – CMS Hospitals Without Walls; Rapidly Expand the Healthcare Workforce; Put Patients Over Paperwork; and Further Promote Telehealth in Medicare

Next Office Hours:
Tuesday, December 8 at 5:00 – 6:00 PM Eastern
Toll Free Attendee Dial In: 833-614-0820; Access Passcode: 3129517
Tuesday, December 22 at 5:00 – 6:00 PM Eastern
Toll Free Attendee Dial In: 833-614-0820; Access Passcode: 3968359
COVID-19 Care Site-Specific Call 

Hospitals Without Walls: On November 25, CMS announced the expansion of the Hospitals Without Walls program by executing an innovative Acute Hospital Care At Home program, providing eligible hospitals with unprecedented regulatory flexibilities to treat eligible patients in their homes. This program was developed to support models of at-home hospital care throughout the country that have seen prior success in several leading hospital institutions and networks, and reported in academic journals, including a major study funded by a Healthcare Innovation Award from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI).

This stakeholder call will feature two leading organizations walking through their programs as well as a question and answer session. Note: Slides/resources will be posted on prior to the call.

Wednesday, December 9 at 4:00-5:00 PM Eastern
Toll Free Attendee Dial In: 833-614-0820; Access Passcode: 1235939
For the most current information including call schedule changes, please click here
Other COVID-19 Webinars

  • Tuesday, December 8 at 3 PM ET
  • Hosted by the American Assisted Living Nurses Association (AALNA) and AHCA/NCAL
  • Register

  • Tuesday, December 8, 2020 at 2 PM ET 
  • Thursday, December 10, 2020 at 10 AM ET 
  • Hosted by AHCA/NCAL 
  • Register

  • Starting Wednesday, December 9 at 12 PM ET
  • Hosted by HHS/ASPR
  • Register

  • Wednesday, December 9, 2020 at 2 PM ET 
  • Hosted by the Georgia Tech Center for Inclusive Design and Innovation, in partnership with the CDC Foundation 
  • Register

  • Recording Now Available!
  • AHCA/NCAL member experts review the most up-to-date PRF reporting requirements available, as well as case examples. Access the Recording
Did you miss HFAM's previous alerts?

Visit our website to view all previous HFAM alerts, as well as guidance
from our federal and state partners.
Thank you.

We cannot thank you enough for the dedication and diligence in doing all that you can for the residents in your communities. HFAM continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic with our state and national partners and will do all we can to support you during this time.