Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It
COVID-19 By the Numbers (as of 7/17/20):

  • Alameda County: 8,858 confirmed cases, 161 deaths (including City of Berkeley data)
  • Contra Costa County: 5,233 confirmed cases, 93 deaths
  • California: 356,178 confirmed cases, 7,345 deaths (as of 7/15/20)
  • US: 3,555,877 cases; 137,864 deaths
ACCMA & CMA At Work for You

The ACCMA has partnered with the California Medical Association and the State of California to provide physician practices with FREE medical-grade personal protective equipment (PPE) kits , including N95 and surgical masks, gowns, gloves, and face shields. Small and medium sized practices must apply for the free PPE kits by July 21 – both member and non-member practices are eligible to apply. PPE will be available for local pickup on July 29 and August 3; the Alameda County distribution will be on July 29 in the Oakland Hills, and the Contra Costa County distribution will be on August 3 in the Pleasant Hill/Concord area. Details regarding the pickup event will be provided as the date nears.  

There will be hundreds of cars coming on each date to pick up these PPE kits. All ACCMA staff will be on location to help distribute the boxes, but we are in need of additional volunteers.  If you would like to support this effort,  please complete the form linked here by Monday, July 20. If you have questions about volunteering, please contact Mae Lum, ACCMA Deputy Director, by emailing   mlum@accma.org  or calling 510-654-5383.
The ACCMA has also launched the new ACCMA Clinician Wellness Program . To help successfully navigate these challenging times, the ACCMA has been addressing how physicians can best care for themselves while they care for others.  The Clinician Wellness Program includes sponsored small group psychotherapy sessions , a list of vetted mental health clinicians , immediate peer support through the ACCMA Advisory Committee on Physician Wellbeing , wellness resources , and more.
County News

Alameda County was recently approved as a variance county, allowing the county to move forward with the re-opening of the Oakland Zoo. The variance from certain state health guidelines during the pandemic also means that outdoor dining will be allowed to continue. However, other restrictions were imposed by the state because Alameda County was placed on the County Monitoring List for COVID-19 , which meant immediate closure of all indoor malls and halting indoor worship services.

In Contra Costa, local data is currently showing that 8.04% of COVID-19 tests administered over the past week were positive, demonstrating that COVID-19 is spreading rapidly in the county. As such, the county revised its social distancing orders to temporarily prohibit indoor worship services, require that all staff and customers wear face coverings at all times in outdoor dining settings, except when putting food or drink in the mouth, as well as increased guidance for businesses that serve alcohol with meals.
COVID-19 Testing and Guidelines

The State of California has released an update to the interim COVID-19 testing guidance , which had originally been issued by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) back on May 1, 2020. The updated guidance aims to help clarify who should be tested for COVID-19, given the current rate of spread across California. The guidance provides a list of tiers, arranged according to testing priority, with hospitalized symptomatic individuals listed as the highest priority, along with close contacts of confirmed cases and other contact tracing.

Early this week, the CDPH also released guidance for counties on the County Monitoring List (which now includes Alameda County and already included Contra Costa County). This includes the closing of a majority of indoor activities, as well as certain outdoor activities and businesses.
In Other News

California health officials have also been urging physicians to increase the rate of suicide screening in their patients. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased strain on many, including social isolation, financial insecurity, and unemployment. These strains disproportionately affect communities of color, who may be at greater risk of suicide, overdose, and illness.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has updated its Provider Relief Fund FAQ to specify that payments received from the Provider Relief Fund are taxable. Provider Relief Fund payments do qualify as disaster relief payments under section 139 of the Internal Revenue Code.

The Physicians Foundation is surveying physicians across the nation to understand how COVID-19 is affecting physician practices and perspectives.

The Trump Administration recently rescinded a rule that would have required international students to leave the country if they are not enrolled in in-person classes. The proposed rule faced significant backlash from states and universities.
What We're Reading - COVID-19 Resources and Guidance
FREE | Tuesday, July 28 | 12:15 - 1:15 PM
Presented by the California Medical Association

CMA Physician Services has partnered with Aledade, to help  independent primary care physicians  and  health centers  successfully pursue value-based care. Adelade does this by working with independent primary care physicians and health centers to build and lead Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) that allow them to remain independent and thrive financially by keeping people healthy. Through value-based care, practices can diversify their revenue streams while improving patient outcomes. By way of example in the 2019 Medicare Shared Savings performance year, physicians practices that partnered with Aledade are projected to receive an average of $380,237 in shared savings bonuses. In this interactive webinar, CMA Physician Services and Aledade will give and overview of value-based care and Aledade's partner services. Participants will also hear from a physician who has partnered with Aledade and transitioned into value-based care.  Register online .
FREE | Wednesday, July 29 | 12:00 - 1:00 PM
Presented by the California Medical Assoc iation

Panelists will discuss the components of screening adult patients for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and toxic stress and developing comprehensive treatment plans. With distinct clinical viewpoints and a case-based format, this webinar will cover:

  • The value of screening adults for ACEs and toxic stress and responding with evidence-based interventions and trauma-informed care.

  • An overview of the ACEs Aware online training for providers, ACE Screening Clinical Workflow, and the ACEs and Toxic Stress Risk Assessment Algorithm.

  • On-the-ground examples of how adult medicine providers are screening for and responding to ACEs and toxic stress.
ACCMA's On-Demand Library

FREE | Available On-Demand
On June 13, the ACCMA hosted its first Virtual Telehealth Vendor Fair. Telehealth vendors from across California and the Nation showcased their products and services so members can evaluate what solutions will work best in their practice. Vendors include Decoded Health, Doctorgram, TigerConnect, Updox, and VSee.

FREE | Available On-Demand | CME Available
This one-hour, on-demand webinar led by Linda Hawes Clever, MD, MACP, offers practical, creative, and effective remedies to deal with the crush on personal and professional lives during the COVID-19 pandemic. It contains strategies, resources, and suggestions for handling physician wellness, as well as addressing questions and answers, as we listen and see the ingenuity, guts, and devotion with which we are addressing the harrowing challenges we all face as a profession, community, and nation. Discover how to reduce personal stress and learn healthy ways to contend with the impact of COVID-19. 

FREE | Available On-Demand | CME Available
Telehealth services are expanding rapidly during the COVID-19 crisis. In partnership with Bay Area medical associations, the ACCMA teamed up with experts to develop a comprehensive webinar series to help physicians swiftly ramp up their telemedicine capabilities, from technology to practice implementation to coding. Experts discuss choosing a telemedicine platform; compliance; privacy and security considerations; billing and payment; policies, procedures, and workflow; informing your patients; and malpractice. Physicians who have experience practicing telemedicine share their practical reflections.

FREE | Available On-Demand
Medical offices and practices are essential businesses and were not required to close, but many physicians have faced difficulties with staffing, incorporating Telemedicine into their practices, ensuring waiting rooms are safe, etc. Sessions include "Getting Back Up and Running Safely," "HR and Employment Issues," and "Telemedicine and Reimbursement."
CMA On-Demand Library
FREE | Available On-Demand
Please contact ACCMA at 510-654-5383 or accma@accma.org with any questions or concerns you have.
This information will also be posted online at www.accma.org/COVID-19 and will be updated frequently. Please check the ACCMA website regularly for updates.