CMS ESRD Telehealth Toolkit

CMS has released a new 6-page ESRD Provider Telehealth and Telemedicine Tool Kit.  Contents include:

  • 1135 Waiver Information
  • CMS Telemedicine General Policy Guidance
  • Telehealth Implementation Guide
  • State Statute Guidance
  • Basics on Setting up Telehealth
  • Telehealth Technical Assistance
  • Selecting a Vendor
  • Articles
  • Patient and Community Resource

Find the new Toolkit at https://www.cms.gov/files/document/esrd-provider-telehealth-telemedicine-toolkit.pdf.

AAKP Coronavirus Survey

AAKP is asking dialysis patients to take a survey on their experience with and concerns about COVID-19.  AAKP’s introduction follows:

“AAKP works closely and constructively with Federal and state officials on health issues of concern to both the general public and those who are immunocompromised – like kidney patients.  As we have in the past with flu and vaccines, we are interested in relaying your insights about the Coronavirus to relevant officials so that their actions and communications are better informed and responsive to your concerns.  As a dialysis patient, has the Coronavirus impacted your thinking or behavior?  What communication, if any, have you, as a dialysis patient, received with your healthcare team and/or dialysis facility?  TAKE A FEW MINUTES, TELL US YOUR THOUGHTS!  AAKP will share insights gleaned from you with the brave medical and scientific professionals fighting the Coronavirus! … Answers and any comments provided will not be attributed to any individual – the FLASH SURVEY is completely anonymous.”

Find the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DialysisandCoronavirus.  They do not indicate how long the survey will be available.

New CDC Guidance on COVID-19 PPE and Recovery

CDC has released a number of new Guidance protocols today on:

Medicare and Medicaid Telehealth Expansion

CMS has announced expansion of payment for Medicare and Medicaid Telehealth services to help deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.  For more information see:

COVID-19 Testing Protocols by State

NBC News has published an article on Coronavirus testing: Information on COVID-19 tests according to state health departments.  The article includes:

  • Idaho: “Call your health care provider if you believe you need to be tested.  Any provider can request a test from the state, as long as they meet CDC infection control requirements for collection.  However, not all providers in the state are set up to meet those requirements, according to the Department of Health.  Test results are usually available 24 hours after they are sent to the state lab.  There are four private labs conducting tests in the state that may have different response times.  For more information, call 2-1-1 or your local public health district [see https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/contact/], or visit Idaho’s coronavirus website [at https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/].”
  • Washington: “Call your health care provider to discuss whether you should be evaluated in person and considered for testing.  Currently, there are no restrictions on who can be tested, however, it’s up to the provider to decide.  Sample collection is done at the provider’s office.  Samples are then sent to facilities such as the Washington State Public Health Lab or the University of Washington Virology Lab for analysis.  Results are generally available within 24 to 48 hours.  Turnaround time can be affected by demand.  For more information, read the Washington State Department of Health’s medium article on testing [at https://medium.com/wadepthealth/covid-19-testing-process-what-you-need-to-know-ad741ed1a806] or visit the department’s coronavirus website [at https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/Coronavirus].”

Find the NBC News article at https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/coronavirus-testing-information-covid-19-tests-according-state-health-departments-n1158041?.