Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It

December 16, 2022

**Note: There will be no newsletter for the next two weeks. We hope you enjoy the holidays. See you in the new year! 

East Bay Moves to Medium CDC COVID-19 Community Level

Alameda and Contra Costa Counties moved from CDC’s “Low” (Green) COVID-19 Community Level to “Medium” (Yellow). To comply with California’s face masking guidance, homeless shelters, emergency shelters, and cooling and heating centers must now reinstate universal masking requirements for all staff and residents. Indoor masking continues to be required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, in health care settings and long-term care facilities. Also, in alignment with state and CDC guidance, residents who are at risk for severe illness and their household members are recommended to wear a mask in crowded indoor public places.

Free COVID-19 Tests Available to Order Online

The Biden administration is again making some free coronavirus tests available to all U.S. households as it unveils contingency plans for potential COVID-19 surges this winter. After a three-month hiatus, the administration is making four rapid tests available to all American households through covidtests.gov. 

Solo Physicians: Register for Retention Bonus by Wednesday 12/21

The application is now live for the health care worker retention bonuses administered by DHCS. Apply now! If you are an independent/solo physician, remember to register first. If you work in group practice, please be aware that your group should be registering and applying on your behalf. The application portal will close on December 30th. For more information, access CMA’s on demand webinar or view the presentation slides.

Deadline to Sign Data Sharing Agreement is Approaching


CalHHS has opened its new online portal to allow practices to sign California’s Data Sharing Agreement (as part of the state’s new Data Exchange Framework). Under state law, physician practices and medical groups are required to sign a template Data Sharing Agreement by January 31, 2023. Signing the agreement is the first step in complying with the new framework. Click here to access a fact sheet and an on demand webinar on the Data Exchange Framework. 

Physicians Must Notify Patients of the Open Payments Database

A new California law (AB 1278) that takes effect January 1, 2023, requires California physicians to provide patients with a written or electronic notice about the availability of the federal Open Payments database. It also requires physicians to post in their offices and on their websites a notice informing visitors about the Open Payments database, which can be used to search payments made by drug and medical device companies to physicians, physician assistants, advanced practice nurses and teaching hospitals.

Download a sample notice for distribution
Download a sample notice to post in your office

Dual Eligible Beneficiaries Transition to Medi-Cal Managed Care

As part of CalAIM, California’s broad Medi-Cal managed care delivery system and payment reforms, the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will transition 325,000 dual eligible beneficiaries in 31 counties to Medi-Cal managed care effective January 1, 2023. Per the DHCS Medi-Cal Managed Care Provider Fact Sheet, Medi-Cal plans are responsible for reimbursement of applicable Medicare deductibles for dual-eligible individuals up to the Medi-Cal fee-for-service rate, even if the physician is out-of-network with the Medi-Cal managed care plan.

Immunization Registry Requirement Begins January 1

Effective January 1, 2023, a new state law requires California health care providers who administer vaccines to enter the immunizations they administer into a California immunization registry. You will also be required to include race and ethnicity information for each patient in the immunization registry to support assessment of health disparities in immunization coverage. Physicians who are not already participating in an immunization registry should start the enrollment process as soon as possible. For more information about CAIR or to start the enrollment process, visit the CAIR website.

Quality Payment Program Exceptions: Applications Close January 3


The deadline to submit a 2022 MIPS Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances (EUC) Exception application is Jan. 3, 2023. Physicians that are interested in requesting a 2022 MIPS EUC and avoid a 2024 payment adjustment may do so by going to the CMS MIPS EUC Exception application page. If you believe you’ve been affected by an extreme and uncontrollable circumstance (such as the PHE triggered by the pandemic), you can apply whether reporting traditional MIPS or the APM Performance Pathway (APP).

PHC’s Medical Student Grant Application Closes January 6

The MedStudentsServe application cycle opened on October 24, 2022, with a deadline of January 6, 2023. This grant awards medical student groups and organizations up to $2,500 to support projects across the state that will enhance the health and well-being of California’s communities. Medical student groups and clubs are welcome to apply for funds to support their community service projects. In the last cycle, 10 student groups received over $16,000 to support projects such as community health fairs, vision screenings, and even a mobile app to increase food access. 

November/December ACCMA Bulletin

You can access the digital version of the ACCMA Bulletin online now. Find highlights from 2022 including legislative wins, the ACCMA Annual Meeting, and CMA House of Delegates, as well as what the new year has in store: HIPAA updates, ways to get involved, and importantly, Medicare cuts and what we can do to protect physicians and patients together.


AMA Federation Health Equity Exchange 

Thursday, January 5 | 12:00 pm 

Free | Hosted by the American Medical Association 


Participants will learn how the Medical Association of the State of Alabama has long been a champion for greater health care access for disadvantaged and underserved communities. Hear how MASA has partnered with other associations and agencies in the Cover Alabama Coalition, a group specifically formed to promote expansion of Medicaid in Alabama and has championed legislative actions to provide incentives for physicians who open and maintain clinics in underserved areas. The Medical Association has encouraged diversity and inclusion within its membership and the medical community as a whole by awarding minority medical school scholarships and they will share that information as well. 


Register here

Virtual Grand Rounds: Updates on RSV and COVID-19 

Tuesday, January 10 | 12:00 to 1:00 pm 

Free | Hosted by CMA 


Receive an epidemiology update regarding respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and COVID-19 from Erica Pan, MD, MPH, California State Epidemiologist and Deputy Director, CDPH Center of Infectious Diseases, and Michael Vollmer, MD, Regional Hospital Epidemiologist and Co-chair of Infection Prevention Committee for Kaiser Permanente, Northern California. 


Register here

2023 Health Care Transitions for Patients with Medicare and Medi-Cal

Thursday, January 12 | 12:15 to 1:15 pm 

Free for all | Hosted by CMA 


According to DHCS, the transition to Medi-Cal managed care will increase the level of care coordination and support offered to dual eligibles, while maintaining beneficiary choice for Medicare providers and plans. The transition will only impact dual eligible beneficiaries – individuals with both Medicare and Medi-Cal – not already enrolled in Medi-Cal managed care. Learn more in this webinar, where DHCS staff will provide an overview and answer questions about the dual eligible beneficiaries transition to Medi-Cal managed care. 


Register here

The Future of Telehealth 

Tuesday, January 17 | 12:15 to 1:15 pm 

Free for members | Hosted by CMA 


During the COVID-19 pandemic, many practices implemented telehealth for the first time. Now, physicians and their patients are starting to think about what happens to telehealth if and when the public health emergency comes to an end. Recent developments at the state and federal level are bringing the future into focus. Join David Ford, CMA Vice President of Health Information Technology, to hear more about the future of telehealth. David is a nationally recognized health information technology expert. He develops CMA's thought leadership in all aspects of health IT, including electronic health records, health information exchange and telehealth. 


Register here

ACCMA's On-Demand Library

To access all on-demand programs, go to https://www.pathlms.com/medical-society/courses 



Please contact ACCMA at 510-654-5383 or accma@accma.orgwith any questions or concerns you have.