April 14, 2020
Stay Connected - LeadingAge Illinois COVID-19 Resources
Stay up to date on state and federal COVID-19 information and updates by accessing the LeadingAge Illinois COVID-19 Resources page. You can also engage with other Illinois members through our listservs, connecting you with your peers by provider type. We have now added a COVID-19 listserv . Contact LeadingAge Illinois if you’d like more information about the listservs or would like to join one.

TOP STORIES
Contact Congress Today for Aging Services Relief
Congress now has the opportunity to provide critical funding and resources for aging services providers throughout the country. Urge Congress to include these LeadingAge priorities in the next coronavirus legislation today! Take Action.
 
Ask your senators and representative to support aging services by including these key priorities in the next coronavirus legislation:
  • $2.2 billion for rent and staffing supports, service coordinators, telehealth capability, and other assistance for the more than 2 million older adults served by federally-assisted housing communities financed by HUD, the Rural Housing Service, and the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program.
  • Priority access to PPE and testing, without which our residents, clients, and staff continue to be at significant and avoidable risk.
  • A $100 billion separate fund for aging and disability service providers to cover additional costs for PPE, cleaning supplies, staffing, and other needs associated with coronavirus.
  • Funding that enables our members to expand their capabilities by becoming extended or step-down entities.
  • A 5% Increase in Medicare reimbursement rates to cover added compensation for staff.
  • Compensation for home health telehealth visits.
  • Grants to support Medicaid HCBS providers, including PACE programs, to strengthen care and services in the home for vulnerable older persons and persons with disabilities.
  • An 8% FMAP increase.
 
We need you to act now by emailing and calling your elected officials. Help us ensure Congress includes these needed resources in the next coronavirus legislation.  
CMS Calls Today
CMS is hosting two calls today. They are:
 
CMS Hospice and home Health Provider Call:
Today from 2:00 – 2:30 p.m. 
 
The call intends to provide updates on the latest guidance and best practices from leaders in the field. 
 
Attendee Dial-In: 833-614-0820
Conference ID: 9466917
 
CMS Office Hours on COVID-19:
Today from 4:00 – 5:00 p.m.
 
CMS describes this session as a “series of opportunities 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”
 
Dial-in details:
Conference lines are limited, so we highly encourage you to join via audio webcast, either on your computer or smartphone web browser. You are welcome to share this invitation with your colleagues.
 
Toll-Free Attendee Dial In: 833-614-0820
Event Plus Passcode: 2395745
IDPH Upcoming Webinars
The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has announced two more upcoming webinars:
 
Personal Protective Equipment and Transmission-Based Precautions, Resident Placement, and Crisis Capacity Strategies
April 15
1-2 p.m.
 
COVID-19 Updates and Q&A for long-term care and congregate residential settings
April 24 and May 1
1-2 p.m.
LeadingAge Media Statement on Nursing Home Reporting of COVID-19 Diagnoses
LeadingAge issued a media statement over the weekend recommending reporting of COVID-19 diagnoses. Here is the statement from Katie Smith Sloan, President and CEO of LeadingAge:
 
“As reported cases of COVID-19 continue to increase, good data is more important than ever before as our country battles this pandemic. We underscore our earlier recommendation to our nursing home members that reporting COVID-19 positive cases to their local health departments is paramount. With supplies of personal protective equipment and testing resources in extremely short supply nationwide, case numbers are a critical piece of information to help determine supply prioritization. Our members are on the front line caring for a vulnerable population.
 
Additionally, because COVID-19 impacts the people we serve, it is crucial that our members maintain transparent communication about positive cases with staff, residents, and families. Finally, we are committed to continued collaboration with all of our partners in public health—from local health departments to national organizations such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Federal Emergency Management Association, and others— in our shared effort to flatten the curve and keep older adults in this country safe.”
Value First PPE Solution Offerings
Your team at Value First has been working hard to provide PPE solutions for you our members. Please click on the links for the vendors to view possible solutions for your community. We have a partnership with American Knits for anti-viral masks. For gowns we have an option with Encompass   for purchasing reusable gown or an option to work with one of our newer vendors MEDtegrity for rentals of gowns or scrubs for your staff. We also have a program with Cintas for hand sanitizer and face shields. You will need your Vizient ID number for Encompass and MEDtegrity.
 
Please reach out to me for your Value First/Vizient ID and for the needs of your community. Also, visit our Value First Website or our resource page for up-to-date information for your community.
Contact: Terry Romin at 224.230.7365
STATE
IDPH Guidance on Transitioning from Hospital to Long Term Care Webinar Discussion Q & A, April 16, 2020
The Illinois Health and Hospital Association (IHA) and Telligen will be leading a discussion on IDPH’s guidance on transitioning patients from the hospital to skilled and intermediate long-term care facilities amidst the COVID-19 crisis on Thursday, April 16, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. The guideline s were issued last week. Click here for the guidance. Register today for this free webinar.
CPR Staff, Training, and TB Clarifications for Supportive Living Program During COVID-19 Pandemic
Kara Helton, SLP Coordinator, HFS, answers some of your Supportive Living Program (SLP) Questions during the COVID-19 Pandemic:
 
CPR:
If you have staff with CPR certification expiring during the COVID 19 emergency, document your attempt to locate training, such as notification from your local hospital that all CPR training has been canceled until further notice. HFS will only accept online training that includes a return demonstration. It is recommended to schedule at least one certified staff person on each shift. When the emergency is over, please seek out training as soon as possible. HFS will be reasonable during this time when citing findings.
 
Staff Training:
Regarding staff training for new hires, at a minimum, they must at least complete infection control, resident rights and abuse & neglect training during the COVID 19 emergency. For dementia care settings, new hires must complete the required 4 hours of dementia specific training within 7 days. If your staff has the opportunity and can complete more of the required topics timely, please do so since it benefits residents. HFS will be reasonable when citing findings during this time.
 
TB Testing:
SLP providers are not required to complete annual TB testing, unless the building’s annual TB risk assessment indicates it is necessary. If you are accepting a new admission, a readmission from a nursing home >30 days or a new hire, please check with your local health department if you are unsure about testing.

RAIs, ISPs, Quarterly Assessments:
HFS will be reasonable when citing findings related to the timeliness of annual RAIs, ISPs and quarterly assessments during the COVID 19 emergency. If a resident has a significant change in condition,you must update the RAI and ISP.  New admits should still have their assessments and plans completed timely so you are able to meet their care needs.
Governor Pritzker Daily Press Conferences
Governor JB Pritzker is conducting daily press 2:30 p.m. conferences on COVID-19. Click here to listen daily.
SIREN Notifications
To get the most up-to-date guidance from the State of Illinois, you can register to receive SIREN - State of Illinois Rapid Electronic Notifications .  SIREN provides regional, State and Federal partners with a comprehensive information sharing, collaboration, alerting and notification solution. If you have difficulties registering please contact SIREN .
Source: SIREN
FEDERAL
CMS Guidance on Transfers
CMS published a memo this week illustrating long term care facility transfer scenarios for the purpose of cohorting residents based on COVID-19 status. The cohorting information is linked to previously announced 1135 blanket waivers. The memo does not address the very real issue of inadequate testing resources; without testing, it is not clear how residents could be cohorted into “positive, negative, and unknown/under observation,” the three categories discussed in the memo.
Family Medical Leave Act Q&A and Decision Guide
LeadingAge has a revised version of the questions and answers about the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) changes made by the Families First legislation. The revision includes information about record-keeping requirements regardless of whether a provider accepts or rejects a request for leave. Relatedly, LeadingAge has a decision guide on implementation of the new FMLA and emergency paid sick leave provisions.
CDC Preparedness Checklist for Nursing Homes and Other Long-Term Care Settings
CDC has created a COVID-19 preparedness checklist for nursing homes and other long-term care providers. This could be used as a tool to develop a comprehensive COVID-19 response to the pandemic including plans for identification and management of ill residents, visitor and consultants staff guidelines, PPE, sick leave, educations, workforce shortages and postmortem care. This is not a mandatory checklist, but highlights areas to prepare for positive case.
Source: CDC
Housing Update
Below, are some important updates related to HUD and work being done by LeadingAge with regard to senior housing. 
 
LeadingAge Updates HUD Requests:
LeadingAge has updated their housing related requests to HUD for the next stimulus bill. There are 19 requests. See the requests here
 
CY20 Service Coordinator Grants:
HUD committed to a timeline for funding Calendar Year 2020 service coordinator grants. The agency has yet to announce a timeline for the new service coordinator or Section 202 funding appropriated in the recent CARES Act. The delayed service coordinator grant funds have compounded property budget pressures as senior housing providers struggle with extra costs as a result of COVID-19.
 
Mortgagee Letter:
The Office of Multifamily Housing issued two mortgagee letters : Section 223(f) Underwriting Mitigants for Multifamily Housing Projects due to Economic Impact of COVID-19 Emergency, and Implementation of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act Forbearance.
 
Rural Housing:
The Rural Housing Service updated their FAQ with more information related to a number of key operational questions.
LeadingAge, Other Organizations Request Delay of Hospice Carve- In Demonstration
LeadingAge, the Better Medicare Alliance, the Visiting Nurses Association of America (VNAA) and ElevatingHome (EH) sent a letter to Brad Smith, the Director of the CMS Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, requesting a delay of the Value Based Insurance Design (VBID) demonstration – hospice benefit component – better known as the carve-in demonstration. The demonstration, intended to offer Medicare Advantage plans the opportunity to make hospice part of the MA plan, rather than having plan participants use fee for service hospice, was set to begin with bids in a few weeks, and start up on January 1. The letter seeks a one year delay, due to the COVID-19 emergency.
OTHER NEWS
Case Study: Citadel Healthcare
Citadel Healthcare recently moved from a paper admissions process to RESIDE’s online admissions software. With 11 facilities throughout Illinois, the RESIDE software is helping Citadel build team morale, alleviate stress, and improve admissions efficiency. And, employees now spend less time printing and processing paperwork, and more time improving the resident experience. Read more
 

Author: Holly Kasnetz, VP of Strategy and Implementation at RESIDE Admissions
CPR Guidance During COVID-19 Pandemic
The Society For Post –Acute and Long Term Care Medicine and AMDA issued CPR Guidance during COVID1-19 pandemic. CPR creates additional risks for contracting coronavirus due to viral aerolization. Guidance outlines steps to follow if initiating CPR.
NEW LeadingAge Resource to Help You Fill Jobs During this Crisis
LeadingAge is establishing partnerships with major national employers and associations to reach displaced workers from fields such as dining, retail, and hospitality, etc. They are directing out-of-work staff to their job board to find positions in your communities.
 
Please post jobs of all   kinds – for FREE - (including temporary positions and those that do not require certification) on the Leading Age Job Board .  
 
It’s easy to post a job! 
  • Under the Employers Tab at the top of the page, select Post a Job
  • Sign-in as I am a Member
  • Choose the (Members) Job Flash Package under the Type of Posting 
  • Fill out the Position Description
  • Input coupon code during checkout: STANDTOGETHER
  • Post job
LeadingAge Live Online Coronavirus Daily Member Update
Today – April 26 (7 days/week)
2:30 p.m. daily
Everyone must register again for this new series of live online updates. When you register, you will be automatically signed up for every update through April 26. After you register, you will receive an email confirmation with your unique weblink, which you can use every day. There will be no telephone option.
 
Also, if you’re a member of both LeadingAge Illinois and LeadingAge National, stay connected with other LeadingAge National Members and share information and resources through the MyLeadingAge Member Community: COVID-19 . This is a place to connect with your peers to share and discuss everyday practices related to the coronavirus. Take a moment now to log into your my.leadingage.org account and join the group to stay connected. LeadingAge also has a COVID-19 webpage with the latest updates, information and resources for members.
 
HUD Speaker on Thursday:
On the April 16 call, Toby Halliday, Director of HUD Multifamily Housing’s Office of Asset Management and Portfolio Oversight (OAMPO), will speak on hot HUD topics. OAMPO has broad jurisdiction over the operational and asset management aspects of HUD’s multifamily housing portfolio, including Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance, Section 202, and Section 811. Halliday and OAMPO are pivotal LeadingAge partners. If you have questions you would like him to address, please send them by close of business on April 13 to Linda Couch and Juliana Bilowich .
EDUCATION
Upcoming Education

April 15, 2020 10:15-11:45 a.m
Faculty: Matt Murer, Meredith Duncan, Colleen Faddick from Polsinelli.
Free to LeadingAge Illinois provider members
$158 for non- members.
 
April 16, 2020 at 1:00 p.m.
Faculty: Adam Kohlrus and Jenny Winkler, Illinois Health and Hospital Association
Free to All
 
April 22, 2020
1:15 p.m.- 2:15 p.m.
Faculty: Donna Cutting, Red-Carpet Learning Systems
Free to LeadingAge Illinois provider members
$158 for non- members.