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COVID-19 in the News May 18th through May 24th, 2021

Published on 

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

 | Coding 
 | Quality 

This week, as we highlight key updates spanning from May 18h through May 24th, 2021, will be our last weekly COVID-19 update. While COVID-19 remains a serious issue, the availability of COVID-19 vaccinations and the significant decrease in new cases being reported are positive reasons to end this weekly addition to our newsletter. MMP is thankful to all front line workers who have worked tirelessly and continue to care for patient’s diagnosed with COVID-19.

Resource Spotlight: CDC Clinical Outreach Call – Underlying Medical Conditions and Severe COVID-19: Evidence-based Information for Healthcare Providers

The CDC is offering this call on Thursday May 27, 2021 from 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET. They note that clinicians will be updated “on the underlying medical conditions associated with severe COVID-19, describe methods used to rate the evidence linking conditions to severe COVID-19, review the evidence on risk for conditions included, and provide resources for healthcare providers caring for patients with underlying medical conditions.” If you are interested in this information but unable to attend, call materials will be posted on this CDC webpage after the call. (link)

May 17, 2021: U.S. Attorney’s Office and OIG Advise Providers Not to Charge Individuals Seeking COVID-19 Vaccines

The U.S. Department of Justice issued a notice for immediate release (link) advising the public that they should not be asked to pay to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and warned COVID-19 vaccination providers to not seek payments from people who received a vaccine.

May 19, 2021: HHS Issues Request for Information (RFI) regarding the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) Program

The American Rescue Plan provides $100 million to the MRC Program. HHS issued an RFI (link) to “solicit specific input regarding current strengths and needs of MRC units and stakeholders, resource gaps highlighted during the COVID-19 response and recommendations for short- and long-term priorities for the MRC.

May 19, 2021: FDA Reminder – Antibody Testing Not for Assessing Immunity after COVID-19 Vaccination
The FDA issued a reminder (link) to the public and health care providers that the currently authorized antibody test should not be used to assess “immunity or protection from COVID-19 at any time, and especially after the person received a COVID-19 vaccination.”

May 20, 2021: Medicare COVID-19 Data Snapshot Updated

This most recent release of Preliminary COVID-19 Data (link) includes Medicare claims and encounter data from January 1, 2020 to March 20, 2021 and were received by April 16, 2021. As of April 16, 2021 there have been 691,077 Medicare Fee-for-Service COVID-19 hospitalizations with a total Medicare payment for these hospitalizations of $16.6 billion and the average payment for a beneficiary hospitalized with COVID-19 being $24,033.

Article Author: Beth Cobb, RN, BSN, ACM, CCDS
Beth Cobb, RN, BSN, ACM, CCDS, is the Manager of Clinical Analytics at Medical Management Plus, Inc. Beth has over twenty-five years of experience in healthcare including eleven years in Case Management at a large multi-facility health system. In her current position, Beth is a principle writer for MMP’s Wednesday@One weekly e-newsletter, an active member of our HIPAA Compliance Committee, MMP’s Education Department Program Director and co-developer of MMP’s proprietary Compliance Protection Assessment Tool.

This material was compiled to share information.  MMP, Inc. is not offering legal advice. Every reasonable effort has been taken to ensure the information is accurate and useful.