April 28, 2020 — COVID-19 News, Updates and Resources
Join us for an unconventional
Spring Scientific Convention
 June 13 & 14, 2020 
16+ AOA Category 1-A Credits 

The Michigan Osteopathic Association will host an online CME event June 13 and 14. The program will feature speakers originally planned for the cancelled, in-person event. The two-day schedule of online sessions will be held Saturday and Sunday, 8:00 am - 5:30 pm, with breaks for lunch and between sessions. Attendees will be able to ask questions and interact with speakers via Zoom.

Register for Saturday and Sunday sessions for 16 AOA Category 1-A Credits, or select a single day to attend for 8 credits. We appreciate all of the support from our members and we look forward to creating a positive online experience in these challenging times.
Amid confusion in managing a practice, MOA provides answers with weekly COVID-19 Webinar Series

WHAT:  The  MOA has partnered with HCPM and Practice Transformation Institute to present weekly webinars on topics surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on your practice.
WHEN:  The next webinar in the series will be held on  Thursday, April 30, 2020, at 7:00 pm
Subsequent webinars in the series will be held every Thursday, from 7:00pm – 8:00pm
HOW:  You may register for the entire series now and attend as many as you can. A recording of each webinar along with handouts will be made available after the scheduled event.
WHO SHOULD ATTEND:  Physicians, Advance Practice Providers, RNs, medical assistants, coders/billers, office managers and any members of your practice's care team.

WHY:  As COVID-19 continues to spread, the MOA, HCPM and PTI are focusing on the health and safety of our physician and care team community by developing and offering guidance on various topics. These organizations are committed to providing you and your practice team with current information and resources during these uncertain times.
WHAT ELSE : The first webinar will cover issues around personal protective equipment (PPE); behavioral health support; the CMS Accelerated and Advance Payment Program; and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Subsequent webinars will cover issues such as:
  • Telehealth reminders and tips
  • ICD-10 and CPT information
  • Coding and billing for telehealth services
  • Engaging your care team
  • Preparing for the next wave of COVID-19
CME for hours worked responding to COVID-19

A State of Michigan Executive Order is allowing clinicians to submit for Continuing Medical Education for hours worked responding directly to the COVID-19 emergency between March 17, 2020 - May 12, 2020.
Executive Order:
Executive Order 2020-49  provides that LARA may recognize hours worked responding to the COVID-19 pandemic as hours toward continuing education courses or programs required for licensure. The Order is effective immediately and continues through May 12, 2020 at 11:59 pm.

All hours must be submitted by May 15, 2020.

For questions, please contact: Melissa Budd at mbudd@domoa.org
COVID-19 Materials and Business Impact Survey
How has COVID-19 Impacted your practice?

As the MOA is attempting to fill the needs of our members, we are trying to get a better grasp of what those needs are and what changes the COVID-19 crisis has caused for our membership. Please take a moment to complete the short survey to share your insight on how the COVID-19 outbreak has impacted your practice.
CMS announces changes to Accelerated Payment Program, launches telehealth toolkit

CMS no longer accepting applications for Medicare Accelerated Payment Program

On April 26, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it is reevaluating the amounts that will be paid under its  Accelerated Payment Program  to Part B providers and suppliers. Effective immediately, CMS will not accept any new applications for the Advance Payment Program in light of the recently appropriated $100 billion authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the $75 billion through the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act for healthcare providers. The Department of Health and Human Services is distributing this money through the Provider Relief Fund, and unlike the Accelerated Payment Program, the payments allocated under the CARES Act and the Paycheck Protection Program do not need to be repaid.

New toolkit to accelerate state use of telehealth in Medicaid and CHIP

Since states have broad flexibility to expand telehealth services during the COVID-19 pandemic, CMS has created a  toolkit  to guide Medicaid and CHIP plans in making policy decisions. Coverage and payment policies vary by state within federal parameters, and this toolkit will help states identify policies that may impede the rapid deployment of telehealth when providing care.
2020 Outstanding Graduating Senior Awarded— Virtually

Each year the Michigan Osteopathic Association (MOA) presents the Outstanding Graduating Senior award. The honor is usually awarded at the House of Delegates meeting at the Annual Spring Scientific Convention. Unfortunately, this year the award ceremony was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This year's winner of the outstanding graduating senior award, Sarah Harris-Kober, was also unable to participate in any commencement ceremony as the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MSUCOM) was forced to cancel their graduation events as well.

While Harris-Kober was denied being acknowledged at the two events, her mother quickly adapted and planned a surprise, teleconference graduation party. Donna L. Harris, an Associate Professor at M.S.U. College of Veterinary Medicine, reached out to the MOA and asked if the Outstanding Graduating Senior honor could be awarded via Zoom. The President of the MOA, Craig Glines, DO, MSBA, FACOOG, was delighted to oblige.

While Dr. Glines apologized for not being "on camera," he quickly assured the over 30 "attendees" that if they could picture Brad Pitt that would suffice. "I saw in the letter from your C3 Director at Spectrum Health Lakeland describes your personality. He said 'Her calm attitude will help manage the stressful situations that can arise.' Well Sarah, perfect timing. We can certainly use some of that these days," said Glines.

“I was shocked and brought to tears by the people who took the time to attend my virtual graduation party," said Harris-Kober. "It was an honor to receive this award and an even bigger honor that Dr. Glines was willing to take time to present this award in front of my friends and family.“

The MOA would like to thank Sarah for being an exemplary Student Liaison for the MOA and congratulate her on being honored as the Outstanding Graduating Senior for the year 2020.
MHA Job Board - Connecting Hospitals

The Michigan Health and Hospital Association (MHA) has launched a free, online job website in response to Michigan hospitals’ need to share staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. As COVID-19 has spread it has stretched the staffing needs for hospitals in some areas while some employees have been displaced or sidelined due to the halting of elective surgeries or other factors.

The goal of the site is to support the communication of available workforce between hospitals. The website offers a very simple platform for hospitals to post what kinds of providers they need and the required skill sets. Hospitals with staff that have been displaced are encouraged to check the website for potential temporary assignments and directly contact the person identified in the post to discuss any relevant details.
What to know about Telehealth billing and coding during COVID-19

Learn more about the changes to telemedicine billing and coding procedures brought on by CMS’ Waiver 1135

In March, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) signed  Waiver 1135 , which brought on significant changes to telemedicine service qualifications, and billing and coding procedures, while the nation battles the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Some insurance companies are following CMS’ lead, but each has its own unique policies. Jill Young, CPC, CEDC, discussed these changes and reviewed what codes are now available for Medicare telehealth/telemedicine services in an April 9 AOA/AOIA webinar.

The world is adapting to life during a pandemic and leaders are looking for a clear path forward. What do recent developments mean for your organization?

Each of their weekly virtual discussions will feature a brief presentation and 30 minutes of open dialog with participants. As legislation changes and business challenges evolve, the topics will adjust to ensure we’re providing relevant and helpful content during these uncertain times.
April 29 @ 1:00 p.m.     | Maner Costerisan's panel of experts will answer questions and discuss the latest developments with the Paycheck Protection Program. Bring your questions for our expert panel!  Click here to register .
May 6 @ 1:00 p.m.     |  Looking ahead to the next 12 months, the Maner Costerisan expert panel will discuss how to manage planning, cash flow, and projections during these changing times. Bring your questions for our expert panel!  Click here to register .
May 13 @ 1:00 p.m.     |  What is your plan to reestablish or reengage your workforce after the stay-at-home order is lifted? Maner Costerisan's panel of experts will answer questions and discuss best practices and considerations for returning to your office or business. Bring your questions for our expert panel!  Click here to register .
Blue Cross And BCN Announce Temporary Sequestration Relief And DRG Enhancement For Medicare Advantage Providers Treating Inpatient Covid-19 Patients

In accordance with our provider agreements and changes to Original Medicare payments under the federal CARES Act, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are implementing temporary sequestration relief and DRG enhancement for in-network Medicare Advantage providers. Both of these changes will be implemented by Blue Cross and BCN as noted below.

These changes will offer financial relief to health care providers during the COVID-19 pandemic and apply to services provided to members with Medicare Plus BlueSM PPO and BCN AdvantageSM coverage.
Healthcare Data Security in the COVID-19 Era

Jeffrey A. May, Attorney at Kerr Russell
Over the last few weeks, Google alone has blocked an average of 18,000,000 COVID-19-related malware and phishing emails every day. Ransomware attacks are on the rise. Now, more than ever, healthcare operations are vital, so would-be attackers know that ransom payments are more likely to be made. Adding fuel to the fire, hospitals are pushed to (or beyond) their limits system, and administrators and service providers are tasked with protecting a substantially larger (uncontrolled) data environment. Nevertheless, providers must still use care in protecting patient data.

Two potential vulnerability points are particularly noteworthy: temporary medical facilities, and remote workers. While necessary, the rush to provide patients with access to care has naturally resulted in a lack of proper IT infrastructure. And unsecured IoT devices – smart beds, wireless monitoring devices, etc. – along with unsecured home networks only exacerbate the problem. Where two months ago, a nefarious actor had to navigate a sophisticated security environment to access a hospital network, the same access may now be available through an unpatched wireless access point in a physician’s home office or through an unsecured computer in a temporary medical facility.
PPEforMI: Medical Students organize to collect donations and deliver much needed supplies

As healthcare workers continue to scramble for Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) supplies, medical students have taken action. PPEforMI is a volunteer driven effort led by medical students throughout Michigan working to facilitate personal protective equipment (PPE) donations from community members to healthcare workers in need. The group was founded by medical students from the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MSUCOM) and collaborates with students across the state.

“As medical students, it is in our nature to want to serve those in need. With our rotations temporarily on hold, this PPE drive allows us the ability to help our fellow medical professionals treat those infected by this pandemic,“ said co-founder Rebecca Gorz, MSUCOM Class of 2021.

The MOA applauds the amazing effort these future leaders are making and we urge those who can to please donate and add yourself to their list of followers on the various social media platforms.

For more information, please contact PPE for MI on the following platforms:
Website:   PPEforMI.com
Facebook:   PPEforMI
Instagram: @PPEforMI
Twitter: @PPEforMI
MHA MiCareMatters:
Now more than ever

The Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA) has launched a statewide #COVID19Heroes campaign to thank and highlight the healthcare workers and others who are on the front lines in the battle against the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
To support this campaign, MHA is looking for stories of real #COVID19Heroes across the state that celebrate the successes in this battle on the association’s social media channels. The campaign complements the #MiCareMatters statewide campaign launched in 2017 that urges Michiganders to become a MiCare Champion and engage in advocacy efforts on behalf of Michigan’s hospitals.
All Michiganders can engage in the #COVID19Heroes campaign by thanking healthcare workers, sharing and tagging them on social media, displaying your support with signs right at home, using a new Facebook Profile Photo Frame, and more. Visit  MiCareMatters.org  to see the additional ways to support the heroes in your life.

To submit a story and photo, please email Todd Ross: tross@domoa.org
With your submitted photo or video, please include names, titles, where they work and any comments about their current experience.
COVID-19 Treatment: An Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment Approach

Mary Goldman, DO
April, 2020

Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) was the only effective treatment known to physicians during the most virulent influenza, H1N1 Spanish flu pandemic of 1918. Like this pandemic, COVID-19 causes Cytokine storm. Research regarding the effectiveness of OMT in treatment of COVID-19 is underway. REMEMBER YOUR Protective Equipment! Until further information is available, these approaches may be of value:
Tell Congress to Protect Physicians and Patients During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Protecting the interests of the osteopathic profession and the patients you serve is of the utmost importance to the AOA. We know you are on the front lines combatting this pandemic and saving lives. As Congress attempts to craft legislation addressing Coronavirus (COVID-19), lawmakers need to hear from you on how COVID-19 is impacting your ability to care for your patients.
As COVID-19 continues to spread, osteopathic medical students, postdoctoral trainees and physicians across the nation are experiencing a host of challenges that impact their practice and the patients they serve:

  • Shortages in medical supplies such as surgical masks and personal protective equipment;
  • Limited guidance on safety and treatment protocols, as well as information on the availability of COVID-19 testing and changing telehealth rules;
  • Potential liability exposure for physicians who want to help by providing care to patients out-of-state; and
  • Impending funding deadlines for critical programs such as the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program, that help strengthen our public health system and ensure that patients in rural and underserved areas are able to access timely medical care.
Send your lawmakers a letter and provide them with a clear picture of what's happening on the ground and the gaps in coverage or resources that need to be filled.
Resources for COVID-19

As information on the Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) from around the world is shared, the MOA is aggregating data, announcements and changes in requirements. The MOA participates in daily meetings to study updates to the situation in Michigan and stay informed on how other states are responding to the outbreak of COVID-19. The MOA will share updates and announcements from various health organizations and state agencies and post on: www.domoa.org/covid-19

COVID-19 Hotlines
MDHHS COVID-19 Emergency Lab Network Hotline: 888-277-9894  
Clinicians should call this number to have the patient’s symptoms and risk factors assessed against the prioritization criteria. If the patient meets criteria, MDHHS will provide instructions for obtaining laboratory testing.

MDHHS Coronavirus COVID-19 Information Hotline:  888-535-6136  
(7 days a week, 8am- 5pm)
For general information on COVID-19 and how the state is working to lessen the risks and limit the spread of COVID-19.  

Centers for Disease Control:  800-232-4636
For general information on COVID-19 on a national and worldwide level. 
COVID-19 Volunteers

The MOA has received a number of calls from members looking for ways to volunteer their skills. Michigan.gov has created a webpage with links for volunteers and donations. The   www.michigan.gov/fightcovid19  site has options for Healthcare Providers, Public Health & Community volunteers. The site also links for donating PPE materials and a link to the Red Cross for blood donations.

February 18, 2020, saw the passing of Rowland W. Hinds, DO

December 5, 2019, saw the passing of Jack Quarters, DO

November 24, 2019, saw the passing of Augutine L. Perrotta, DO

Michigan Osteopathic Association | 517/347-1555 | www.domoa.org