Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It
May 28, 2021
COVID-19 Updates

The CDC Vaccine Safety Technical (VaST) Work Group released a statement on reports of myocarditis following mRNA vaccines. There are relatively few reports of myocarditis and these cases seem to occur predominantly in adolescents and young adults, more often in males than females, more often following dose 2 than dose 1, and typically within 4 days after vaccination. Clinicians are asked to
  • Inquire about recent COVID-19 vaccination AND COVID-19 exposure in any patient presenting with signs or symptoms consistent with myocarditis or pericarditis (i.e., chest pain or pressure, arrhythmias/palpitations, shortness of breath, EKG abnormalities, or elevated cardiac biomarkers).
  • Test these patients for COVID-19 infection using a PCR test.
  • Report cases of myocarditis or pericarditis after vaccination promptly to the U.S. Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS).
  • Continue to encourage COVID-19 vaccination in your patients, as the benefits far outweigh the risks.

Moderna is expected to submit data to the FDA next month to approve its COVID vaccine for children as young as 12. The Pfizer vaccine was approved by the US in early May for use in patients starting at age 12. 

Alameda County is developing a list of homebound patients who require COVID-19 vaccinations in their homes. If you know of a homebound individual or have a list of homebound individuals, please call 510‑208‑4VAX.
 
The Association of Bay Area Health Officials, which represents 12 Bay Area Health Officers and their jurisdictions, including Alameda County, Contra Costa County, and the City of Berkeley, released a statement supporting the California Department of Public Health’s strategy to continue with the existing masking guidance until June 15, at which point the State will align with the CDC’s masking guidance.
 
Contra Costa County reported on Thursday that 74% of residents 12 years and older have received at least one vaccine dose and 64% have been fully vaccinated.
 
On Thursday, Alameda County reported that 77% of residents 16 years and older have received at least one vaccine dose, and 63% have been fully vaccinated.

Alameda County reports that it has administered more than 1,868,000 doses as of May 28. As of May 26, ICU capacity in the county is at 36% with 14 confirmed COVID patients hospitalized.

Contra Costa reports that it has administered more than 1,299,000 doses as of May 28. As of May 27, ICU capacity in the county is at 27% with 8 confirmed COVID patients hospitalized.

Statewide ICU capacity is at 88%. Alameda and Contra Costa remain in the orange tier.

The #ThisIsOurShot campaign has launched a private Facebook group that has up-to-date information. The campaign also holds weekly Zoom calls to discuss digital engagement campaigns, hear from guest speakers, and have breakout sessions to plan for future campaigns. These calls are held on Tuesdays at 5:30 PM.

CDPH is holding weekly “office hours” to provide an update on COVID-19 vaccination planning and allow providers in the state to ask questions, on Fridays from 9-10 AM. The June 4 session can be accessed through this link or by calling (415) 655-0001. The event number is: 145 305 3168. The password is: Immunize2021!

CMA's COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Center can be accessed here.

The ACCMA and the California Medical Association (CMA) are continuing to provide PPE directly to medical practices in Alameda and Contra Costa counties, by going to this link. N95 masks, surgical masks, isolation gowns, face shields, goggles, coveralls, and hand sanitizers may be ordered. Vinyl gloves are available only to solo and small practices. If approved, orders are shipped directly to medical offices. Only shipping and handling fees are charged for each individual case shipped. For groups with multiple offices, a separate order must be completed for each location. Please contact the ACCMA at accma@accma.org or (510) 654-5383 for more information.
Support for Physicians Who Screen/Treat Patients for ACEs
 
The California Medical Association (CMA) is launching engagement groups in July to help physicians who screen/treat patients for adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) learn best practices, protect their personal wellness, and share experiences, facilitated by trained, volunteer physicians. To register or learn more, click here.
Advocacy to Stop Insurer from Overturning Mental Health Claims Ruling

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has joined with the American Medical Association (AMA) and other medical societies to oppose United Behavioral Health's (UBH) request that a court throw out a ruling that found the insurer unfairly denied tens of thousands of claims for mental health and substance use disorder services. The California Medical Association (CMA) submitted a friend of the court (amicus curiae) brief. To learn more, click here.
CMA Urges Congress to Focus on Immediate Patient Needs and Protecting the Affordable Care Act

California Medical Association (CMA) President Peter N. Bretan, MD, released a statement in response to the Public Option announcement by Senator Patty Murray (D-Washington) and Representative Frank Pallone (D-New Jersey): "The California Medical Association appreciates efforts by Senator Murray and Congressman Pallone to expand health care choices for the uninsured. But we strongly believe that we must first rebuild our health care infrastructure in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and take other important steps before we can have a meaningful discussion over a public option.” To view the full statement, please click here.
CMA Supports Bill to Allow CME for Practice Management Education
 
The California Medical Association (CMA) is sponsoring Assembly Bill (AB) 359 (Cooper), which expands the definition of CME qualifying content to include practice management education, which aligns with other state and national guidelines and results in better services to patients. To learn more about AB 359, click here.
Nominations Wanted for the Royer Award in Neurology
 
The ACCMA has been asked to send nominations for the 2020 J. Elliott Royer Award in Neurology. Each year, this award recognizes two psychiatrists or two neurologists, one academic and one community, active in the medical field in San Francisco, Alameda or Contra Costa counties who, during the year, have made the most significant contribution to the advancement of psychiatry or neurology. The award alternates each year between the specialties of Neurology and Psychiatry. This year, two recipients will be selected for this cash award, one to an academic neurologist and the other to a community-based practitioner. Please submit your nomination requests to Joe Greaves, ACCMA Executive Director, at jgreaves@accma.org or (510) 654-5383, ext. 6301, as soon as possible, so nominating and supporting letters can be submitted by June 30.
WEBINARS & EVENTS
Available on demand
Member $29.00 | Non-member $79.00

Now available! Current and new staff can receive on-demand training on HIPAA, OSHA, and customer service. Intended for all staff encountering patients in person or by telephone, this course covers customer service techniques, the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). For questions, contact Jenn Mullins, Education and Event Associate, at jmullins@accma.org.
 
Click here to register. 
FREE | Through June 15, Tuesday evenings, 6:308:00 PM 
 
Join us for a keynote session featuring Anthony Iton, MD (SVP, The California Endowment), followed by three panel discussions that examine health equity in the Bay Area and highlight strategies for improvement.

June 1: Community Resilience Case Study: Physician Leaders of the African American Response Circle 
June 8: A Systems Approach Case Study: The Permanente Medical Group (TPMG)  
June 15: Leadership in Action Case Study: Kedran Community Health Center & True Vine Ministries Vaccine Clinic 
 
Click here for details and to register for the series. 
Tuesday, June 8, 2021 | noon to 1:30 pm
FREE | CME Available | Presented by CMA
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought medical ethics to the foreground, as many have had to make complex decisions during this crisis as individuals, health care providers, public health leaders and elected officials. In this Virtual Grand Rounds, we will hear from experts on medical ethics and how these ethics relate to the individual and collective experience of the COVID-19 pandemic. Key questions will include: How do we evaluate our response to the pandemic as a nation? As a global community? What issues are emerging as a partially vaccinated society that is trying to re-open? What have we learned from this crisis and how can we codify those learnings to be better prepared in the future?
 
Erica Pan, MD will also give updates on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic nationally and in California, as well as the evolving public health guidelines as the state moves toward fully reopening. In addition, she will review the progress of the vaccine rollout and the evolving story of COVID-19 variants.
 
Presenters:
Arthur L. Caplan, PhD, New York University Langone Medical Center and School of Medicine
Erica Pan, MD, California state epidemiologist
Kimberly Newell Green, MD, Associate Clinical Professor, UCSF (moderator)
 
Click here to register. 
Friday, July 16 | 8 AM –12:15 PM
CME Available | Presented by the Riverside County Medical Association
 
Topics to be covered at this year’s virtual conference include aging physicians, safe and legal monitoring of physicians in a treatment program, physician well-being committee roles and responsibilities, and more. The conference is open to anyone involved or interested in improving the health and well-being of physicians.
 
Speakers: David Bazzo, MD; Kai McDonald, MD; Ajeet Singhvi, MD; and Elizabeth Snelson, Esq.
 
Register here
Thursday, August 26 | 6:15–7:30 PM
FREE | CME Available
 
Using data and stories, together in conversation, we will focus on yourself, as well as your potential new directions and skills, and your “team,” whether at home or professionally.
 
Speaker: Linda Clever, MD, MACP
 
Click here to register.
ACCMA's On-Demand Library

To access all on-demand programs, go to learning.accma.org.

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