Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It
COVID-19 By the Numbers (as of 09/11/20):

Poor Air Quality and Smoke
Alameda and Contra Costa Counties continue to experience unhealthy air quality levels due to wildfire smoke, causing testing events and other activities to be postponed. Visit county testing sites for Alameda and Contra Costa for latest updates.

The Air District extended the Spare the Air Alert for wildfire smoke through Friday, September 11, and possibly the weekend. Spare the Air Alerts are issued when ozone or particulate matter pollution is forecast to reach unhealthy levels.

If the smell of smoke is present or visible, it is important that Bay Area residents protect their health by avoiding exposure. If possible, stay inside with windows and doors closed until smoke levels subside. If temperatures are too hot indoors, visit an air-cooling center or other building that provides filtered air. It is also recommended that Bay Area residents set air conditioning units and car vent systems to re-circulate to prevent outside air from moving inside.

Click here for more guidance on fires/smoke during the pandemic. To check your local air quality rating, please visit AirNow.
DMHC Tells Payors They Must Continue Telehealth Payment Parity
The California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) issued an all plan letter (APL) reminding health plans of the continued requirement to reimburse providers at the same rate for telehealth services, including telephonic visits, as they would for services provided in person and may not subject enrollees to cost-sharing greater than the same cost-sharing if the services were provided in person.
In Other News

This week the public was invited to comment on a National Academy of Medicine committee report on the national SARS-CoV2 vaccination policy, commissioned by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Institute of Health (NIH). The Draft of the Preliminary Framework for Equitable Allocation of COVID-19 Vaccine recommends a phased-in approach to vaccine distribution based on availability.
In addition, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Assistant Secretary for Health, issued guidance under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) to expand access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines when they are made available.

On Thursday, the CDC released updated information on reinfection based on studies showing a person who has had and recovered from COVID-19 may have low levels of virus in their bodies for up to 3 months after diagnosis. This means that if the person who has recovered from COVID-19 is retested within 3 months of initial infection, they may continue to have a positive test result, even though they are not spreading COVID-19.

The California Medical Association (CMA) is seeking physicians to volunteer their time and expertise towards creating new competency standards, supporting educational loan repayment and expanding graduate medical education (GME). Each effort supports California’s physician workforce while further improving patient care. We currently have three opportunities:

Lastly, the California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) has extended two waivers that give physicians flexibility with expiring licenses. With the new waiver extension, physicians with licenses that expire between March 31, 2020, and October 31, 2020, will have six months after the public health emergency is lifted to complete their required CME. Also, residents who were enrolled in an approved postgraduate training program in California on January 1, 2020, have until October 31, 2020, to obtain their postgraduate training license.
What We're Reading - COVID-19 Resources and Guidance

ACCMA is pleased to partner with Santa Clara Medical Association, in collaboration with four other Bay Area medical associations, to promote the following FREE CME Diversity and Inclusion Webinar Series aimed at arming you with the skills to facilitate better, more inclusive patient outcomes. This week, Dr. Keith Carter, who teaches ophthalmology at the University of Iowa medical school, will speak on Minorities in Medicine

FREE Webinar | Tuesday, September 22 | 6:30 - 7:30 PM (PST)

As women physicians, we face unique challenges over the course of our careers: from frequent microaggressions to overt differences in salaries, promotions, and leadership roles.

Join the ACCMA and RechargedMD for an interactive introduction to the RechargedMD Women Physician Peer group! We’ll explore our experiences as women physicians, discuss how to overcome these barriers together, and make use of tools to make strides in our personal and professional development. 

FREE | CME Available | Thursday, September 24 | 6:00 - 7:00 PM (PST)

Do coping strategies and self-care interventions seem to be failing you? Are you finding yourself with more work, but feeling less productive? This session will introduce you to the core concepts behind the Stress Continuum Model, a model first developed by the military (Navy/Marine Corps) as a way to acknowledge stress responses that occur on a continuum and ways to assess the level of your own, and others', stress response.

CME Available | Eight Evening Sessions | 6:00 - 8:00 PM

Sessions Begin October 6. Early Bird Discount Ends September 15!

ACCMA's Physician Leadership Program is an innovative program developed in 2016 by physician leaders in collaboration with faculty from the UC Berkeley School of Public Health and Haas School of Business. It addresses the fact that physicians are, and should be, placed in roles with organizational responsibility, but have limited formal opportunities to learn the concepts, skills, and tools of leadership. 

Each virtual session provides an intense, experiential learning experience led by nationally recognized faculty using a dynamic interactive online format. The new format provides additional opportunities: 
  • Enjoy collaborating and networking with colleagues in breakout rooms
  • Earn additional CME opportunities with supplemental materials in each session
  • Interact during sessions with digital collaboration tools
  • Apply new practices and share in discussion boards with your peers
  • Attend online office hours with the Course Director for Q & A

Saturday & Sunday, November 7 & 8 | 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Presented by UCDavis Health: Center for Advancing Pain Relief

This two-day event will feature expert presentations, 20-minute hot topic talks, and engaging panel discussions on the latest issues in pain management. Primary care clinicians and all other health sciences professionals with an interest in pain management are encouraged to attend. This event will be held exclusively online. Zoom information will be provided closer to the date.

Registration coming soon!
ACCMA's On-Demand Library

FREE | Available On-Demand | CME Available
This one-hour, on-demand webinar led by Angela Trapp  MSW, ACC, focuses on self-care and understanding self-preservation. Most of us were taught that being self-centered is an undesirable trait. What if the opposite was true? Could being a little more self-centered improve your well- being and restore resiliency? This presentation identifies the importance of putting SELF first and practicing the 3S Model: Self-Compassion, Self- Awareness and Self Care to continue on the pathway to well-being.

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 oraccma@accma.orgwith any questions or concerns you have.