Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It
May 14, 2021
COVID-19 Updates

The FDA authorized emergency use of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds on Monday. It also updated the fact sheets for Healthcare Providers Administering the Vaccine and for Recipients and Caregivers with information to reflect the use of the vaccine in the adolescent population, including the benefits and risks of the Pfizer vaccine.
 
CMA hosted a webinar on Tuesday with the California Department of Public Health for providers of pediatric services to learn how to enroll in the California COVID-19 Vaccination Program. The recorded webinar is available to view and the slides are available for download (you might need to log into the CMA website to download the slides). All providers who have patient populations ages 12 to 18 years old are now eligible to enroll in the COVID-19 Vaccination Program.
 
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is requiring long-term care facilities to report weekly data on the COVID-19 vaccination status of their residents and staff to the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network. This interim final rule, which was published on Tuesday, also requires these facilities to educate their residents and staff about COVID-19 vaccines and offer such vaccines to them when available.
 
California has released new Cal/OSHA Interim Guidelines on Protecting Workers from COVID-19. While the guidelines do not impose new legal obligations, they do provide employers and employees with information for preventing exposure to SARS-CoV-2. 

Contra Costa County is now offering no-appointment service at all its COVID-19 vaccination sites. Individuals can walk up to any COVID-19 vaccination site, with or without an appointment, to get vaccinated.
 
Contra Costa County reported on Thursday that 60% of its population 16 years and older have been fully vaccinated, and 73% have received at least one dose.
 
On Thursday, Alameda County reported that 53% of its population 16 years and older have been fully vaccinated, and 74% have received at least one dose. 

Alameda County reports that it has administered more than 1,690,000 doses as of May 14. As of May 12, ICU capacity in the county is at 40% with 19 confirmed COVID patients hospitalized.

Contra Costa Health Services reports that it has administered more than 1,200,000 doses as of May 14. As of May 13, ICU capacity in the county is at 30% with 8 confirmed COVID patients hospitalized.

Alameda and Contra Costa remain in the orange tier. Statewide ICU capacity is at 30%.

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 May 21 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.
UnitedHealthcare Restores Free Access to Payment Remittances
 
In response to advocacy by CMA and AMA, UnitedHealthcare announced that effective May 22, the Optum Pay basic service would restore access to claim payment and reconciliation activities for an unlimited number of users, provide detailed remittance information, and deliver up to 13 months of payment data. CMA had received numerous complaints from physicians regarding these issues and escalated their concerns with UnitedHealthcare. 
ACCMA Membership Survey Closes, Random Drawing Winner Announced
 
The ACCMA thanks the many members who completed a survey to help inform and shape the future of the ACCMA. All respondents received a $5 Starbucks card and were entered into a drawing for a pair of Apple AirPods Pro. The winner is Doctor Megan Heeney, who writes, “I am an Emergency Medicine Intern at Highland Hospital. I grew up in Omaha, NE and prior to this year spent my life in the Midwest. I love working in Alameda County and am particularly glad I get to work with our amazing patients and my passionate co-workers. I am excited about ways we can work as a community to advance health equity and harm reduction efforts.” Congratulations to Doctor Heeney! 
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. 
May 18June 15, Tuesday evenings, 6:308:00 PM 
FREE | Presented by Bay Area Medical Societies and the Ethnic Health Institute 
Join us for two keynote sessions featuring Rishi Manchanda, MD (President and CEO, HealthBegins) and 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.
May 18: Linkage Between Social Inequity and Health Disparities, Rishi Manchanda, MD, MPH 
May 25: Health Equity in Our Own Backyard, Anthony Iton, MD, JD, MPH 
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. 
Wednesday, May 19 | 10 AM – 2:30 PM
FREE to attend | CME Available
 
This will be a four-hour online training for qualified prescribers (including physicians, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants) to receive half of the 8 hours of training required to obtain a Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) waiver for treatment of Opioid Use Disorder (OUD). Open to members and non-members. Counts for 4 CME credits.
 
Click here to register.
Wednesday, May 19 | 6–7 PM
FREE| Presented by CMA and CA-AAP
 
Learn how the federal Information Blocking rule, which took effect April 5, 2021, affects pediatric practices. While the rule holds many benefits for patients and physicians, it raises some specific considerations for pediatric practices. Those practices may hold confidential data related to, for example, teen reproductive health, sensitive family situations, or adolescent mental health treatment. The rule, however, allows for physicians to keep this information confidential, provided that practices take the proper steps to implement their compliance efforts.
 
Presenters:
Susan J. Kressly, MD, FAAP
David Ford, VP of Health Information Technology, CMA
Jessica Rubenstein, Associate Director of Health Policy, MCA
 
Register here
Thursday, May 20 | noon1:30 pm
CME Available | Presented by CPPPH/CSAM
 
This webinar focuses on cases of physicians who were referred for evaluation because of apparent cognitive difficulties they exhibited. The case examples will review the results from the neuropsychological tests that were administered, and the recommendations based on such test results.
 
Presenters:
Lauren Drag, PhD, Stanford University School of Medicine
John G. Rosenberg, MD, MPH, Berkeley Therapy Institute
 
Register here
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
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.