Posts

CMS Updates

P3Care and Trump Administration Encourage Practices to Reopen

America should adopt smarter ways to counter COVID-19 as it reopens for patients and clinicians. In the meanwhile, CMS has come up with a guide for patients and beneficiaries as they decide to visit providers for in-person care.

As a result of the surge in COVID-19 patients, many providers were left with no option except to restrict care at their facility. They had to do that for the essential treatment of COVID-19 patients.

However, with a much-improved situation now, the government encourages private practices and clinics to resume their normal operations. They are to continue with their postponed non-emergency treatments and carry out in-person patient visits as we speak.

The patient guide ensures the safe reopening of healthcare facilities with patients receiving the much needed in-person care. National public health emergency took over, causing this delay in normal appointments, procedures, and treatments.

We can’t thank President Trump enough for his vision, the expansion of telehealth, to be specific, in a very short time. In this way, all this time when America was closed, patients were able to talk to their clinicians from the safety of their homes.

Ms. Seema Verma, Administrator of CMS, reinforces the vitality of in-person care and refers to it as a gold level of care. Such steps by the government are in favor of patients who have long been waiting at homes for procedures, vaccinations, operations, and evaluation of chronic conditions.

She further explained healthcare is the right of every American and our healthcare heroes are working day in and day out to deliver it safely. We should all feel confident when going for in-person care recommended by our providers.

On April 19, CMS issued the first part of recommendations to safely start in-person care activity in areas with a low occurrence or relatively low and constant number of COVID-19 cases. Hence, we move ahead with another set of recommendations.

CMS leaves no stone unturned when it comes to patient and clinician safety as healthcare systems, practices and clinics further enhance in-person care standards. Recommendations include a list of topics to ensure safety regulations are in place for patients and providers including facility measures; testing and sanitation levels; personal protective equipment and stock of supplies; and workforce presence.

As it was with part 1 of recommendations, decisions to reopen should be in line with federal, state, and local rules, CDC’s guidance, and association with the state and local public health authorities.

As the country continues to move on the path of reopening, patients have concerns about when to check-in with their providers for in-person visits.

CMS also acts as a guide with empathy for patients to make the right decisions as they prepare to meet their providers in person. Ultimately, it is in their best interest to follow the new rules.

Find guidelines for patients for in-person visits in English here: https://cms.gov/files/document/covid-what-patients-should-know-about-seeking-health-care.pdf and in Spanish here: https://www.cms.gov/files/document/covid-what-patients-should-know-about-seeking-health-care-spanish.pdf

To read one of the previous updates, go here – P3 investigates: Trump Administration plans to reopen nursing homes

To read about the work of the White House Coronavirus Task Force reaction to COVID-19, go to www.coronavirus.gov. For specific information about CMS, keep reading our blog updates.

Medical billing services, medical billing companies

CMS Issues Guidelines for the Nonessential Medical Procedures

COVID-19 has taken over the world. The coronavirus emergency has become so big that the regular medical procedures have taken a back seat until the situation gets any better.

CMS – The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid has announced that all the nonessential surgical, diagnostic, and dental procedures should be delayed during the novel corona outbreak.

The reason for it is that the number of corona affected patients are increasing and so is the demand for more doctors. As the physicians are participating in the fight against the pandemic, it is difficult for them to continue with the regular procedures. Moreover, they can also save on their personal safety equipment, tools, ventilators, and beds.

On the other hand, amidst the coronavirus lockdown, it would be difficult for medical billing services to compile claims when their resources can be used to document hundreds of cases of COVID-19.

CMS admits that this step will be helpful to treat those, who are more in need of quality healthcare. The coronavirus spread can only be limited when everybody takes charge of his safety and others around him. A conclusive step towards a corona-free nation would be that clinicians advise their patients to stay at home unless absolutely necessary to minimize their risk of virus exposure.

They should encourage patients to follow the government guidelines to slow down or contain the risks of COVID-19.

The Impact of Limiting Regular Medical Procedures

Medical billing services, medical billing companies

The CMS-issued recommendations already come with an implementable plan for hospitals and medical practices for immediate COVID-19 response action.  The organization has also touched upon factors in which physicians may postpone nonessential surgeries.

The factors include:

  • Patient risk factor leading to the urgency of medical procedure
  • Availability of equipment/ beds/ staff

The recommendations will be compliant to assist emergency patients and save resources for corona effects. The decision to proceed with the dental, medical, and surgical procedures will be taken by the local clinician, patient, hospital, state, and local health departments.

All of these actions taken to assist medical billing services and clinicians are part of the White House Task Force efforts.

What the Bigger Picture Looks Like?

Medical billing services, medical billing companies

Doctors and other healthcare staff are under great threat of having COVID-19. They are acting as front liners due to their nature of jobs. The recommendations will also be a step towards their safety. Ultimately, every healthcare organization has to implement these strategies so that, we don’t face handling the worsening situation with limited resources.

American Medical Association (AMA) also appreciates this step by CMS. In this way, healthcare organizations will be preparing for COVID-19 patients efficiently. Whereas, healthcare leaders will be strategizing to better support physicians and patients.

CMS offers much flexibility in its program for healthcare providers to consider the benefits of this suggestion. Medical billing companies can also manage their duties accordingly.