Weekly Roundup: In Case You Missed It
January 7, 2022
COVID-19 Updates

  • Indoor masking requirements extended until at least February 15

  • FDA authorizes COVID booster for adolescents ages 12-15, as well as some immunocompromised children as young as 5 

  • CDC announces that Omicron variant accounted for 95% of all COVID-19 cases during the week ending on Jan. 1 

  • CDC now recommends booster after 5 months instead of 6

  • Solano County reports that 68% of the total population is fully vaccinated as of January 3.  

  • Napa County reports that 72.3% of the total population is fully vaccinated as of January 4. 
Guidance on Health Care Staff Vaccination Requirements

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released guidance on the Omnibus COVID-19 Health Care Staff Vaccination Interim Final Rule. The emergency regulation requires vaccinations for eligible staff at health care facilities participating in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. Facilities covered by this regulation must establish a policy ensuring all eligible staff have received at least one dose of the COVID vaccine by January 27, and received the necessary shots to be fully vaccinated by February 28. Click here to access the FAQs. 
Updated Guidance for Managing COVID Infections for Health Care Workers, the General Public

On Dec. 23rd, the CDC updated its interim guidance for managing health care workers (HCW) with an infection or exposure to COVID-19. The guidance includes updates on when an HCW can return to work following an infection. Additionally, the California Department of Public Health has provided updated guidance to local health jurisdictions on isolation and quarantine recommendations for the general public. 
Solano Doctor Receives Volunteer Service Award from White House
Dr. Ted O'Connell, the Chief of the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Kaiser Permanente Vallejo and the treasurer of NSMS, has been honored with the President's Volunteer Service Award from the White House. Dr. O'Connell received the award for his part in creating an open source solution to the pandemic's oxygen supply shortage. Read more here, and congratulations to Dr. O'Connell! 
MBC Licensure Fee Increases and Enforcement Changes

SB 806 went into effect on January 1. All Medical Board applicants and licensees will be impacted by increases in all application, initial licensure, and renewal fees. Enforcement changes include cost recovery for investigation and prosecution costs, and malpractice settlement disclosures in cases with judgments greater than $30,000. Read more here
Preparing for Implementation of the No Surprises Act

Many of the provisions of the No Surprises Act (NSA) took effect January 1st. The American Medical Association has developed a toolkit to help providers prepare for implementation of the NSA. The toolkit will be updated as additional guidance becomes available. Register for the CMA hosted webinar on January 19 from 12:15 - 1:15 pm to learn more.
EDD will Require Identity Verification for Physicians Certifying SDI Claims
In an effort to combat disability insurance fraud, the California Employment Development Department (EDD) will begin requiring medical providers to verify their identities through ID.me before certifying State Disability Insurance (SDI) claims. Beginning January 10, you may be contacted by EDD via email if you have a certified SDI claim. 
Sunday, January 9 | 10:15 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. 
$20 (no CME) or $185 (with CME) | Presented by Touro University 
Touro University California has announced that its 4th annual Integrative Medicine Symposium will be held on Jan. 9, 2022. Participants may join virtually for “seminars, workshops, meditation, yoga, community and connection.” CME is available at a cost. 
Register here
Tuesday, January 11 | 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM    

Register for this one-hour webinar to hear California Medical Association (CMA) Senior Counsel and Director of Legal Advocacy Joey Cachuela and Legal Counsel Lance Martin discuss the new 2022 laws that are affecting physicians and their practices, highlight pending health legislation and explain CMA’s legal resources available to members. 

Joseph Cachuela, Senior Legal Counsel, California Medical Association 
Lance Martin, Legal Counsel, California Medical Association 
Register on CMA Website here.
Tuesday, January 11 | noon – 1:00 PM  
Free | CME Available | Presented by CMA  
Hear from experts who will discuss the evolving landscape of COVID–19 therapeutics and prepare us for the potential oral medications in the pipeline. Speakers include Erica Pan, MD, California State Epidemiologist, and Sarah Doernberg, MD, UCSF Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine. 
Register here.
Wednesday, January 26 | 12:15 – 1:15 PM  
Free | Presented by CMA  
CMS Regional Chief Medical Officer, Ashby Wolfe, MD, will provide an overview of current CMS policy as outlined in the 2022 Physician Fee Schedule. She will focus on key updates related to telemedicine, evaluation and management services, and the agency COVID-19 response. 
Register here.
On Demand Webinar  
Free | CME Available | Presented by CMA and California Department of Public Health 
This one hour and 50-minute virtual program features experts sharing how to advance health equity by screening patients for prediabetes and referring them to the National Diabetes Prevention Program. Participants will also learn how to identify and overcome barriers to screening and referral. 
Register here.
NSMS's On-Demand Library

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

Please contact NSMS at grogers@napasolanodocs.org or (707) 255-3622with any questions or concerns you have.